Lyle Najita najital at rockvax.rockefeller.edu
Wed Nov 2 09:13:43 EST 1994

In article
<Pine.SGI.3.91.941101094059.8381A-100000 at lonestar.jpl.utsa.edu>, "Justin
W. Moore" <jwmoore at lonestar.jpl.utsa.edu> wrote:

> On 1 Nov 1994, chatski carl wrote:
> > There is no animal host for Ebola.  Ebola is not found in nature.
> I take it you mean no animal reservoir.  Ebola does infect hosts.....and 
> disease has been indicated in humans, guinea pigs, and monkeys just to 
> name a few.......

Unfortunately, I do believe that Mr. Chatski was referring to the fact
that Ebola "suddenly appeared" as if it were released. Futhermore, I
believe that Mr. Chatski is of the opinion that many such biological
agents are laboratory creations, aberrations, or mutations that have
escaped, either accidentally or by design. As a molecular biologist who
has worked on four different viral systems for a little over a decade, I
have to say that I find such theorizing dangerous. 1) It implies that we
have much greater knowledge about such biological agents than we actually
do (and you, yourself have stated how much we don't know). 2) What follows
is that such knowledge should logically mean that we also could cure or
counteract any diseases caused by these artificial agents. 3) That "we" as
the creators and holders of the "cure" are merely holding out for the
public to "pay" us to cure the disease. Not only are such delusions
nonsense, they are dangerous when they start to affect public health
policy. If you followed the plague outbreak in Surat, India, just imagine
what would happen if some infectious disease of that nature (plague,
Ebola, Hantaan, etc.) broke out in one of the major metropolitan centers
anywhere in the world. IMHO, it would make Stephen King's The Stand look
like a child's campfire ghost story.

More information about the Virology mailing list