Texas A&M Heads Center for Biological Threats

Friday, October 12, 2018 @ 05:10 PM gHale

Texas A&M University was named to lead a consortium of U.S. academic institutions and other partners for a new Center of Excellence (CoE) for Cross-Border Threat Screening and Supply Chain Defense (CBTS).

As a result, CBTS garnered a $3.85 million grant for its first operating year of a 10-year grant period, said officials at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T).

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“This Center’s work will assist DHS operations that protect the global supply chain and reduce the risk of exposing people and infrastructures to new and evolving biological threats,” said William N. Bryan, the senior official performing the duties of the Under Secretary for Science and Technology. “We anticipate this new Center will work closely with industry and other partners to develop solutions that minimize risks.”

The CBTS CoE will work closely with DHS components such as U.S. Customs and Border Protection to research and develop solutions to counter known and unknown biological threats to the nation’s people, agriculture, and economy.

“This Center will deliver relevant technology and analytics to support CBP in securing the trillions of dollars of trade and millions of travelers that enter the United States each year,” said CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan. “We look forward to working with Texas A&M and the Center of Excellence as we explore new technologies to better facilitate safe and secure trade and travel.”

As lead institution, Texas A&M University will spearhead a consortium of academic, industry, government, and laboratory partners throughout the country to help fulfill S&T’s commitment to provide continuous access to high-quality, university-led research and education resources to the Department’s Components and the broader homeland security enterprise.

CBTS’ research portfolio will focus on three major topic areas: Technologies detecting biological threats moving through global supply chains, data integration and analytics to support threat detection, and novel methods to minimize risks to DHS operations.

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