The Ebola Virus. In Depth Research Paper About The Ebola Virus. Disscusses Infection, Spread, Mortality Rates, Different Strains And Outbreaks.

1337 words - 5 pages

The ebola virus is a very complex level four virus. Level four viruses are extremely lethal, and there is no cure for them yet, not does there seem to be a cure for them or ebola in the near future. To give you an example of just how lethal level four viruses like ebola are, AIDS is only a level three virus, and requires minimal protection when working with it. The protection required for working with the ebola virus consists of wearing three layers of gloves, and giant space suits. Only people with top government security are allowed into these airtight rooms where this all takes place. The virus is a member of the family filoviridae. In this family, there are only three viruses that apply, and they are all practically identical, with only one thing that distinguishes them from each other. This is "that their enzyme sequences, are slightly different"(Murphy, 2). While there are three different viruses that fit in this family, there are also three different strains of the ebola virus: Sudan, Zaire, and Reston. Reston has its own classification in the filoviridae family, because it is not as lethal as the other two, and because it has mutated to become airborne. Out of the three strains of ebola, Reston is the only one that is not lethal to humans. It is only lethal to monkeys. It tends to give humans flu like symptoms, and disappears within a couple of days. "The very first known outbreak of ebola, occurred in 1976, in both Sudan, and Zaire. The last known outbreak occurred in May of 1999, in a region of the Congo"(Sgro & Spencer, 8).The ebola virus is transmitted only through the contact of infected bodily fluids. Although, the virus is transmitted through only bodily fluids, the virus was believed to originate in monkeys. For monkeys have been the culprits in the two outbreaks that have occurred in the United States. An associated press writer stated "the first outbreaks of ebola began when some local natives found a monkey in the forest, and began eating the raw flesh from it"(Johnson, 1). The monkeys, who seemed to have contained the virus, then passed it on to the humans, through the monkey's blood. The only strain of ebola that can be spread otherwise is ebola Reston. This strain is an airborne strain of ebola, but since it is not lethal to humans, it is not that big of a threat to us. Once you have contracted the virus, it invades your cells, and multiplies very rapidly. It quickly moves from cell to cell, multiplying and destroying as it goes. Your cells become so destroyed and mangled that they eventually explode. Soon after this, you begin to show the symptoms of the virus. This includes headaches, backaches, fever, vomiting, hemorrhaging both internally and externally, your skin is jaundice, with pink lesions all over it and your face seems comatose. Internally, you bleed into yourself. The patient usually dies within ten days of the first symptoms. The final stage of the virus, is the crash and bleeding out stage. This is the...

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