Leidos has been awarded a contract by the US Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) for a worldwide Scientific & Technical Engagement Partnership (STEP) valued at approx. U$170 million if all options are exercised. The programme, with a one-year base period of performance and four one-year options, will support DTRA’s Cooperative Biological Engagement (CBEP) and Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) Programmes.

DTRA provides The US Department of Defense's (DoD) core intellectual, technical, and operational support expertise for countering threats posed by weapons of mass destruction and high-yield explosives. The CTR Program promotes collaboration with international and non-governmental partners to advance regional engagement and multilateral cooperation in the area of biological warfare non-proliferation. The STEP programme will build long-term partnerships between strong research and technical centres and CBEP partner-country institutions to reduce biological threats through enhanced biological safety and security, awareness of biological risks, and knowledge related to biological pathogen research in foreign countries.

Under this new contract, Leidos will partner with industry, research institutions, non-governmental organisations and local scientists to develop collaborative overseas research programmes and provide specialised training in laboratory research and containment facilities engineering, public health preparedness and emergency response, and disease outbreak field surveillance and response.

Non-proliferation of biological warfare continues to be an issue of considerable concern to the US Defense Threat Reduction Agency. (Image: US DoD).

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