The Deadly Hanta Virus

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The Deadly Hanta Virus Hanta virus is a dangerous and often deadly disease that must be guarded against. If proper precautions are not taken, hanta virus could lead to a nationwide outbreak causing many deaths. While there are a few cases of hanta virus reported each year, the consequences of coming down with the disease dictates that the U.S. set up certain safeguards to educate the population on how to protect themselves. Even though research is being done on hanta virus and its related illnesses, there persist many unanswered questions. Hanta virus like all other viri are some of the smallest organisms known to man. Their existence as living organisms is debated. Viri perform only the most basic functions of life. They seek out a suitable environment and reproduce (Fraser pg. 9). "Hanta virus belongs to a group of RNA Viri related to the family Bonyaviridae and, depending on its nature, may be the etiological agent for one of two acute illnesses: Hanta virus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) and, Hemorrhagic fever with Renal Syndrome (HFRS)"(info1.html pg. 1). While hanta virus has only recently been discovered, it is by no means a new virus. Having been around for several millennia, hanta virus has found its way into Indian legends. Hanta virus is a very secretive disease, its symptoms are so vague and its occurrence is so low it was viewed as several different illnesses for hundreds of years. The only reason hanta virus was identified was due to a 1993 outbreak that involved many people getting sick within a short time and in the same area. Now hanta virus's presence can be isolated with antibody tests. People who have had the disease, both living and dead, have been identified as far back as thirty years ago (inf... ... middle of paper ... ...s of the hanta virus, there is definitely the chance of a national crisis. By establishing safety codes that require testing for hanta virus in urban areas, and starting a public education program that informs and educates people about the danger of hanta virus, the government can significantly reduce the hanta virus hazard. Bibliography: WORKS CITED What are the Symptoms of HPS? CDC. 11/8/99. http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/diseases/hanta/hps/noframes/symptoms.htm Basic facts About HPS and the Hanta Virus. 9/26/1998. 11/8/99. http://www.hantavirus.net/info1.html Brian Hjelle, MD. Hanta Virus, With Emphasis on Four Corners Hanta Virus. March 14th 1995. University of New Mexico School of Medicine. 11/8/99. http://www.uct.ac.za/microbiology/hanta.html Dean Fraser, Viruses and Molecular Biology. (New York: Macmillan Company, 1967).

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