The second of two controversial papers on the bird flu (avian influenza A/H5N1 virus) was published on June 22 in Science. There was a lot of controversy whether these studies should be made public.
Both studies provide important information about mutations that make the bird flu more infectious and more deadly. However, while contributing to knowledge of how to combat this and other flu viruses, this information could also conceivably be used to design a more pathogenic version of bird flu.
For more perspective on the issue and a little background on the studies, please see the recently posted article, "Making the Bird Flu More Pathogenic to Humans."