In Voyager Lifesigns Vidian Danara Pel beamed aboard Voyager with advanced phage. Transporters normally "clean up" organisms before rematerializing then, so bacteria, viri, and even toxins are removed through the transporter biofilters.

How did the phage escape the biofilters?

  • 1
    Why didn't the transporters cure the common cold?
    – user62584
    Sep 28, 2019 at 0:12
  • Another question might be why do they even bother having a doctor at all when they have transporters? someone loses a limb in a woodcutting accident, pass him through the transporter & have the transport buffer record of his most recent previous trip through it replace it, replicators & matter transporters are the self same technology after all, Neelix's lungs getting removed that time is another case where you might expect an option like that to be used.
    – Pelinore
    Sep 28, 2019 at 3:39
  • Ah, having followed some of the related links I see that ^ question's been thoroughly covered.
    – Pelinore
    Sep 28, 2019 at 3:53

1 Answer 1


The transport biofilters are described (in the TNG Technical Manual) as being able to deal with known dangerous bacteriological and viral forms. The Phage appears to be something different, a disease which directly infects the DNA (at birth) and then ravages it from the inside out.

Biofilter. Normally used only in transport to the ship, this image processing device scans the incoming matter stream and looks for patterns corresponding to known dangerous bacteriological and viral forms. Upon detection of such patterns, the biofilter excises these particles from the incoming matter stream.

It seems likely that a condition that is so closely related to the DNA of the Vidiians that the transporter simply reads as part of their normal physiology.

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