Press Release

HEARING: #SubOversight to Get Update on Federal Oversight of Select Agent Program


WASHINGTON, DC – The House Energy and Commerce Committee today announced a hearing before the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee for Thursday, November 2, 2017, at 10:15 a.m. in room 2322 of the Rayburn House Office Building. The hearing is entitled, “Concerns over Federal Select Agent Program Oversight of Dangerous Pathogens.”

#SubOversight will examine continued safety lapses at some of our laboratories that conduct research on select agents, dangerous pathogens such as the Ebola virus and anthrax bacteria, that may cause serious or deadly infection in humans, animals, or plants. These lapses continue to raise concerns about whether federal oversight of these laboratories is effective.

Subcommittee members will have the opportunity to see if the Federal Select Agent Program, jointly managed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is meeting all key elements of effective oversight and how the program’s oversight approach compares with oversight approaches in other countries.

Confirmed witnesses include:

  • Mary Denigan-Macauley, Acting Director, Health Care, Government Accountability Office;
  • Samuel S. Edwin, Ph.D., Director, Division of Select Agents and Toxins, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and,
  • Freeda E. Isaac, DVM, Director, Agriculture Select Agent Services, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Energy and Commerce has a long history of conducting oversight of the Federal Select Agent Program and its management of dangerous pathogens, conducting hearings and pressing the agencies for more information about past laboratory incidents.

The Majority Memorandum, witness list, and witness testimony for the hearing will be available here as they are posted.


Press Release