Download Virus Hunter (Weird Careers in Science) by Rick Emmer PDF

By Rick Emmer

This sequence investigates strange careers in science-related fields and unearths out approximately in most cases thought of ways that technology should be placed to exploit. With complete color phtographs and illustrations. a while 12-16 years.

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Extra info for Virus Hunter (Weird Careers in Science)

Example text

AIDS was no longer just an American epidemic; it was turning into a pandemic. VIRUS HUNTERS SET THEIR SIGHTS ON HIV Research into the cause of AIDS took a while to “get into gear,” because the federal government did not want to make the unpopular decision to spend millions of dollars studying a disease that at first appeared to affect only homosexuals and drug addicts. Fortunately, the government’s attitude changed as the disease began to infect people from all walks of life, including newborn babies and people who received blood transfusions.

This resulted in a lack of communication that slowed down the investigation. Finally, some people speculate that there may have been a “gender factor” involved. It appears that the concerns voiced by officials at Flushing Hospital and the Bronx Zoo may not have been taken seriously at first because these people were all women, while the CDC scientists in charge of the investigation were all men. This may have resulted in a lack of cooperation that slowed down the investigation. One would hope that officials at the CDC and elsewhere learned a valuable lesson from this experience: When dealing with emerging viruses, don’t let competition and unrelated factors get in the way of clear communication and cooperation.

Dr. Smith also collected blood samples from patients at the hospitals in Nzara and Maridi and tissue samples from the livers of some of the dead victims. The samples were carefully packaged, frozen, and shipped to a special virology laboratory in England. Some of the samples were sent to Dr. S. national public health agency. Johnson sent the samples to researcher Patricia Webb, who was able to grow the killer virus in cell cultures. She then gave a small sample of virus-infected cells to virologist Fred Murphy, chief of the branch of viral pathology at the CDC.

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