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The Hot Zone

  • Date Submitted: 03/31/2011 07:32 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 58.8 
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Amelia Liberati

The Hot Zone

Richard Preston

There is something in the world more terrifying, more severe, and more hostile then a gun.   Though it does not kill in the same fashion, the job gets done.   In the book The Hot Zone, the reader encounters the gruesome story of a virus that travels across the planet and transforms its seven proteins, panicking people across the United States while magnifying its vengeance in the suburbs of Washington, D.C.
Through reading this story, the reader becomes engrossed in biological concepts that largely affect each human being’s life.   All living things can reproduce and viruses are no exception to this rule.   As long as the virus’ host is alive, it will multiply at a feverish rate.   Once the host dies, its remains begin to decompose and liquefy waiting for its next victim to latch onto.   When a living cell comes into contact with a virus, it becomes the new host and the cycle repeats itself.   Eventually the virus goes into hiding, waiting to resurface again.   In The Hot Zone, cells are magnified 17,000 times under a microscope so scientists can see their particles.   They realize the cells are extremely “hot” when huge bricks and crystalloids are visible.   This means that these cells are a “biological time bomb” waiting to explode with extreme amounts of “hot virus”.   Depending on the kind of virus, its contents may be powerful enough to knock out the entire human population or just a building full of monkeys.
      In The Hot Zone, there are four major viruses that breakout on Earth.   The first is the Marburg Virus.   It attacks humans with a 25% morality rate.   Some symptoms that victims exhibit are sunken red eyes, fever, headaches, black vomit, and total body hemorrhages.   Ebola Sudan, Ebola Zaire, and Ebola Reston are the next three viruses talked about in the book.   They are closely related to Marburg and thought to be its “sisters”.   These four viruses are in the family called Filovirus...

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