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Only two facilities in world hold deadly smallpox virus. An explosion just ripped through one.


The facility also holds Ebola & HIV

Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Only two facilities in the world hold active strains of the deadly smallpox virus that was declared eradicated in 1980. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have one in their Atlanta facility and Russia has one at the State Centre for Research on Virology and Biotechnology in Siberia.

On Monday, an explosion ripped through the Siberian facility, which is located outside the city of Novosibirsk.

Russia's state-news agency, TASS, reported that a gas container on the fifth floor of the six-story building ignited, shattering windows and triggering a fire, according to CNN.

There was no serious structural damage reported, and only one person was injured in the blast. Russian officials say there were no biohazards material where the explosion and fire occurred.

City officials also urge there is no biological threat, the BBC reported.

The research facility, which also houses the HIV and Ebola viruses, was opened in 1974 during the Cold War for Soviet scientist to research biological weapons. Today, the facility is one of the world's leading medical facilities developing vaccines and medical tools to better treat infectious diseases.

The facility recently completed successful clinical trials for an Ebola vaccine, which has no vaccine or cure.

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