An infectious disease researcher at UT Health Medical School says experiments with the Spanish flu are done under strict security protocols.  Dr. Luis Ostrosky says the results could make us safer in the future.

“We definitely need to know viruses better, to create better diagnostics, to create immune-therapies,” says Dr. Ostrosky, “and the only way to do so is to really work with the viruses.”

The Spanish flu pandemic killed 50 million people worldwide in the early 20th century.  Ostrosky says there are things that worry him more than the risk of somebody smuggling the virus out of the lab and exposing the public.

“It's highly regulated and I'm more concerned about somebody getting infected inadvertently,” he says, “rather than somebody who takes the virus out.”

The research is being done at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.