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Panic in Level 4: Cannibals, Killer Viruses, and Other Journeys to the Edge of Science - 08 edition

Panic in Level 4: Cannibals, Killer Viruses, and Other Journeys to the Edge of Science (ISBN10: 1400064902; ISBN13: 9781400064908)
ISBN13: 978-1400064908
ISBN10: 1400064902

Summary: PANIC IN LEVEL 4 by Richard Preston INTRODUCTION- Adventures in Nonfiction Writing Oliver Heaviside, the English mathematician and physicist, once said, ''In order to know soup, it is not necessary to climb into a pot and be boiled.'' Unfortunately, this statement is not true for journalists. As a writer of what's called ''literary nonfiction'' or ''creative nonfiction''- narrative that is said to read like a novel but is factually verifiable- it has often been my practice to clim moreb into the soup. Getting boiled with your characters is a good way to get to know them, but it has occasionally led me into frightening situations. Some years ago, while I was researchingThe Hot Zone,a book that focuses on the Ebola virus, I may have had a meeting with an unknown strain of Ebola. (A virus is an exceedingly small life-form, an infectious parasite that replicates inside living cells, using the cell's own machinery to make more copies of itself.) Ebola has now been classified into seven different known types. Though it has been studied for more than thirty years, Ebola is one of the least-understood viruses in nature. Scientists have been understandably reluctant to study Ebola too closely because it has on occasion killed those who tried to do so. The virus was first was noticed in 1976, when it surfaced in Yambuku, Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo), near the Ebola River, where it sacked a Catholic mission hospital, killing most of the medical staff along with a number of patients and people the patients had came into contact with. Ebola spreads from one person to the next by direct contact with blood or secretions, including sweat. There is no evidence that it can spread among humans through the air, although there is some evidence that it may spread among monkeys this way. As a parasite, Ebola carries on its life cycle in some unidentified type of animal-Ebola's natural host-that lives less

Edition/Copyright: 08
Cover: Hardcover
Publisher: Random House, Inc.
Year Published: 2008
International: No

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