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University at Buffalo art professor Steven Kurtz, facing a possible prison term for his use of bacterial agents in his art, "wants to push forward and be vindicated" despite his ailing co-defendant's worsening medical problem, his lawyer said today.

U.S. Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder Jr. on Wednesday indefinitely delayed the arraignment of Robert E. Ferrell, 60, of Pittsburgh, who suffers from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and was deemed too ill to travel to Buffalo for court proceedings.

A federal grand jury last month indicted Kurtz and Ferrell, chairman of the University of Pittsburgh's human genetics department, on mail fraud and wire fraud charges linked to two bacterial agents found in Kurtz's home laboratory. Kurtz and Ferrell are accused of illegally using Ferrell's position with the Pittsburgh university to obtain the agents.

Attorney Paul J. Cambria got Schroeder to schedule pretrial hearings for Kurtz, 46, in mid-December. Kurtz, who was allowed to remain free without bail after his July 8 arraignment, declined to comment. He will resume his UB teaching schedule in September.

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