Biological weapons are microorganisms like virus, bacteria, fungi, or other toxins that are produced and released deliberately to cause disease and death in humans, animals or plants.
Biological agents, like anthrax, botulinum toxin and plague can pose a difficult public health challenge causing large numbers of deaths in a short amount of time while being difficult to contain.
Bioterrorism attacks could also result in an epidemic, for example if Ebola or Lassa viruses were used as the biological agents.
Biological weapons is a subset of a larger class of weapons referred to as weapons of mass destruction, which also includes chemical, nuclear and radiological weapons.
To quote the World Health Organisation, the use of biological agents is a serious problem, and the risk of using these agents in a bioterrorist attack is increasing.