US: Six at Harvard poisoned by tainted coffee

Six medical researchers at Harvard University were poisoned in August after drinking coffee tainted with a chemical preservative, university officials say, reports The Associated Press. In an internal memorandum, the university said the coffee came from a machine near the researchers' laboratory that later tested positive for sodium azide, a common preservative used in laboratories.

After drinking the coffee on 26 August, the six researchers reported symptoms like dizziness and ringing in the ears, and one passed out. They were treated at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and were later released.

The memorandum did not say whether officials believed the poisoning was intentional."As always, we are mindful of the need to be diligent about laboratory safety and security and the importance of proper management of laboratory chemicals," the memorandum said. "We are in the process of installing additional security cameras throughout our buildings, and we are strengthening the security systems that manage access to the laboratories."
Full report on The Associated Press site