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Ebola: a quick question

Michael Osier michael.osier at yale.edu
Tue Apr 29 23:57:15 EST 1997

Nanda Somarajan wrote:
>         You would think that the whole nation would be in an outbreak,
> but for some reason, it is not. 

from what I understand, the virus is so quick to kill its host that it
"burns itself out"...if a virus spreads slowly, undetected, and without
killing the host, it will be easier for the virus to become
widespread...for instance, HIV kills its host relatively slowly (years
vs days)...often it has years of infectivity where it shows no major
effects on the host, and is therefore unable to be detected without
antibody tests...except for the later stages, one can't look at someone
and tell if they are HIV positive...

if a virus rapidly displays symptoms, it loses this protection, as
people stay away from the infected person, etc...

hope this helps

Michael Osier = mosier at moose.uvm.edu | "He is not well rounded who does
http://mole.uvm.edu/~mosier/         | not have an equally keen interest
BS Biochemical Science - UVM         | in all of the things within the
Yale University                      | compass of painting."
Human Genetics             - Og      | Leonardo da Vinci

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