Books such as Richard Preston's The Hot Zone thrust the deadly Ebola virus into the spotlight, but they can't match the first-person perspective of Virus Hunter. Author C. J. Peters is an ex-army colonel who has spent his professional life studying deadly pathogens in the lab and in the wild. He spins a drama- and adrenaline-filled true tale of virus hunters, which is gripping despite its occasional tendency to grow verbose and detour into personal history. Peters offers a look at crippling diseases not only through the eyes of a scientist, but also with the perspective of an insider in the defense establishment, painting a chilling picture of the potential of biological terrorism or outright warfare. Science Editor's Recommended Book
Ever since Richard Preston's startling book The
Hot Zone, killer viruses like Ebola, Lassa, Marburg and the hanta viruses have been huge
at the box office--replacing bigger monsters as the scariest of horrors. Regis tells the
story of how the Center for Disease Control (CDC) dealt efficiently with the most recent
real-life outbreak of Ebola in Kikwit, Zaire in 1995. Although they never found the source
of the outbreak, CDC scientists stopped it completely within a month. Initial panic by
local medical authorities was stemmed with swift isolation of the infected and the
training of staff to deal with this incurable horror using the latest technology:
"rubber gloves, plastic gowns and face masks." Regis suggests that the threat
from viruses has been overblown; his account of the CDC's heroic efficiency is certainly
In this acclaimed book, updated with a new chapter, Radetsky takes readers inside the fascinating, high-stakes world of viral research -- the frontline in the war against colds, flu . . . and the scourge of AIDS. "Engrossing reading for scientists and nonscientists alike." -- New York Times Book Review.
I am NOT a medical professional.
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