The Hot Zone Essay

The Hot Zone Essay

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In 1980 a man named Charles Monet went on a trip with a girlfriend up to Mountain Elgon in West Kenya. They spent the night there and went to a large cave called Kitcum cave. Three days after his return home, Charles began to have a headache. A few days later he went to the doctors and they told him he should go to a bigger/better hospital in Nairobi. So Charles flew to Nairobi.
During the flight to Nairobi Charles found himself vomiting blood with a black liquid. Charles finally reached the hospital only to wait. While he was waiting and he lost all sense of balance. Charles started to go into shock. He started to throw up even more blood. The people who were there said the only sound was the choking in his throat from his constant vomiting. Then the horrid sound of his bowels opening up was also heard by the witnesses. Blood mixed with his intestinal lining then leaked out of his body. This was a dying process which happens to nine out of ten people who come in contact with the deadly disease is called “crashing and bleeding”.
Samples of his blood were flown to all the major disease labs in the world. The disease was identified as Marburg Strain. In Sudan the same type of virus was wiping out whole tribes. So Gene Johnson (the one in charge of the Reston operation, and
discoverer of Ebola Sudan) flew over there and worked with the sick members of the tribes to try and find a cure. This strain of Marburg was called Ebola Sudan because of where it was found. Later on in Zaire, missionaries would give vaccine shots and penicillin to local tribes to help reduce the number of outbreaks. One of the nuns whose name was unknown there became sick with a similar disease. She had the very first recorded case of Ebola Zaire which is the most dangerous of the three strains. She died and her blood was sent to disease labs all over the world as well. The strain was called Ebola Zaire since it was discovered in Zaire.
In Reston, Maryland there was a monkey house that would ship monkeys all over the United States to labs for medical experiments. Suddenly the monkeys started dying. Peter JahlringHe was a disease expert at Fort Detrick from fort Detrick came and took a look at the monkeys and took some blood samples. Jahlring and Tom Geisbert then looked the samples, thinking it was just a monkey virus and accidentally exposed themselves to the virus. They looked at it un...


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...tely be a very large panic. The virus would also spread so quickly and do so much damage in a very short period of time. The virus would basically wipe out our population if it weren’t contained/controlled properly.
     The book presented this problem, with the virus being dormant for a while, and then starting to contaminate a population. The book also has the virus being spread within a lab holding monkeys (used for experiments) that was located in the United States. This creates fear in the reader’s mind, because one would think it is just a matter of time before the virus gets out into the “real” world. The book deals with the problem by locking up the lab and getting rid of the virus by placing chemicals into the building with the monkeys. Because this is a true story, I believe that this would be the most logical solution to the problem.
     Overall, I felt this was a very interesting book to read. It was able to keep my attention and kept me from putting the book down. Some of the parts seemed to be a little graphic and were gross. I would recommend this book to anyone who wanted to read a good true story about viruses.

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