The Hot Zone

My Thoughts about The Hot Zone by Richard Preston

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

The Hot Zone by Richard Preston is a fascinating book that goes through various dangerous viral biological outbreaks occurring mainly between the 1970s and the 1980s. The Hot Zone is not a fictitious work, rather, it is documentation of a series of dangerous virus outbreaks located primarily in Africa. It begins with information regarding an outbreak of the rare and extremely deadly Marburg virus. Frenchman Charles Monet is in Kenya in 1979, working at a sugar factory. He decides to visit Kitum cave with a friend, and later contracts the Marburg virus. The Marburg virus behaves almost identically to the Ebola virus, its symptoms including fever, red spots, swelling, low blood pressure, internal bleeding, muscle pain, vomiting, diarrhea, headache hemorrhage, and shock. Charles Monet takes a plane and then a taxi to Nairobi hospital, where he loses consciousness and collapses bleeding onto the Emergency Room floor. He is treated by Dr. Shem Musoke but unfortunately infects Dr. Musoke before dying in the Intensive Care Unit. Dr. Musoke’s case is picked up by another doctor, Dr. Silverstein. Preston goes through different Marburg virus outbreaks before shifting to multiple strains of Ebola. He outlines the extraordinary danger that comes with handling the viruses and describes in graphic detail all the precautions that Major Nancy Jaax took when she worked with viruses in the “hot zone” (the areas of a laboratory contaminated with a virus) of the United States Army Medical Research Insitute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID). Preston does a fantastic job outlining the handling of each outbreak as well as the dangers of each virus and the significant threat they each pose to humanity.

Anyone interested in the medical field, biology, or taking/planning to take Honors Biology should read The Hot Zone by Richard Preston, which details horrifyingly dangerous viral agents in addition to their treatments and the extreme threat they pose. Preston does a great job describing the viruses. When a new strain of Ebola is discovered, he details its shape, saying the viruses look like “snakes, pigtails, branchy, forked things that looked like the letter Y… a classic shape… Shepherd’s crook” (Preston 72). He uses virologists as sources in his book, such as Karl Johnson, who helped discover Ebola (Preston 72). Preston does not just talk about the shape and discovery of viruses but also talks about their effects. He states that Monet’s liver “had ceased functioning several days before he died… It was yellow, and parts of it had liquified… It was as if Monet had become a corpse before his death” (Preston 18). The great detail he provides to readers would be especially interesting to those studying or interested in studying biology or biological agents, as he provides far more detail about the real-world impacts of these viruses than the biology textbooks currently used do. After Preston gives plenty of background on a virus, he describes their treatments. When detailing Dr. Musoke’s time with the Marburg virus, he describes how difficult it is to care for Marburg patients. Dr. Silverstein, who treated Dr. Musoke, told Preston that he “tried to give him nutrition, and tried to lower his fevers when they were high… was basically taking care of somebody without a gameplan” (Preston 21). Preston makes it a point to show where treatments fail as well. He points out that “even in the best modern hospitals, where patients are hooked up to life-support machines, Marburg kills a quarter of the patients who are infected with it” (Preston 23). He shows the real danger of these viruses not only with their effects but also with the effectiveness of their treatments, which can be alarmingly minimal. As Preston discusses the treatments for viral agents like Marburg, he shows the lack of knowledge regarding the topic as well as how deadly these viruses could be. Finally, Preston shows how threatened even trained and suited up experts are by viruses like Ebola and Marburg, which capitalizes on the risk they pose to humanity. He explains that the “doctors in the city thought the world was coming to an end” and even includes a letter from Karl Johnson, a former CDC virologist, who said that “unless you include the feeling generated by gazing into the eyes of a waving confrontational cobra, ‘fascination’ is not what I feel about Ebola. How about shit scared?” (Preston 23, 72). The fact that trained medical professionals are terrified of viruses that are halfway around the world from where the doctors live, and that medical professionals remain terrified when handling the viruses despite wearing many, many layers of protection provided by what is literally considered a “biological spacesuit,” is proof that these viral agents pose a serious threat to all of mankind (Preston 44).

One could argue that this book is overdramatic or exaggerated and that that takes away from its validity, but that (unfortunately for humanity) simply is not the case. Preston does not make up viruses, outbreaks, or experts in his book. Instead, he contacts experts involved in them. Preston has relentlessly pursued truth and accurate information, stating that “my fax was received [by an expert he contacted], but there was no reply. So I waited a day and then sent him another fax” (Preston 72). Preston followed similar determined pursuits of information with his multitudes of other sources, such as Major Nancy Jaax, Dr. David Silverstein, Dr. Musoke, and USAMRIID (Preston 30, 20, 16, 36). The fact that Preston has gone to such great efforts for accurate information, and that he has described these efforts so as to ensure his audience understands that he is not overstating anything is proof that Preston is writing to raise awareness and caution rather than creating exaggerations for causing panic. If Preston was interested in publishing overly dramatized books on viral outbreaks, he could do that easily with a fictitious book and far less time spent researching. But he did not do that. Instead, he involved every expert he could.

To conclude, The Hot Zone by Richard Preston is a phenomenal book detailing the characteristics, treatments, and tremendous risks associated with the world’s deadliest viruses, and should be read by anyone interested in the medical field so they know exactly what kind of world they are getting involved with.

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Biological Principles in The Hot Zone by Richard Preston

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

The Hot Zone is a non-fiction book surrounding the horrors of Ebola. Richard Preston begins the novel, In Africa, 1980, speaking about the Marburg virus, and how it ultimately led to the gory and brutal death of Charles Monet. Preston continues, now talking about the initial Marburg outbreak in Germany. The outbreak started at the vaccine factory in Marburg, Germany, hence the namesake of the virus. In Sudan, the narrative continues, recounting the tale of Yu G, a storekeeper who contracted the brutal virus, eventually spreading to and throughout his village, and ultimately the general area. Medical clinics all over the country have now caused the outbreak of strain Ebola Zaire, as well as Ngalemia Hospital, leading to the story of Mayinga, a nurse who contracted the virus because of medical negligence at the facility. Shifting to the American influence, Preston then focuses the story to scientists in the U.S, one being Nancy Jaax. Her speciality in medicine led to Jaax taking part in the race to find a cure for Ebola. As the novel begins to focus on the Ebola strain discovered by Jaax in the1980’s in the Reston, Virginia monkey facility, it delves into the biological side of the research and findings of the strains, explaining the details of the virus. Nearing the end of the book, Preston then describes the SWAT mission to break into the monkey facility and euthanize them, as well as take samples, not without risk of exposure, though. Their findings concluded that the strain is extremely deadly in the primates but is undetectable in humans. Finally, Preston recounts his experience in the origin Hot Zone, where the Marburg was first contracted, in Kitum Caveat. Five passages in this book utilizing biological principles are:

As seen on page 135 (pictured in back few pages), the book uses biological lingo to communicate the dangers of the virus. “That many particles of airborne Ebola could easily hatch out of a single cell. A tiny amount of airborne Ebola could nuke a building full of people if it got into the air conditioning system.” (Preston, 135). This quote shows how deadly the virus is because of how contagious it is. This also portrays how effectively their DNA is transmitted to other beings, leading to an outbreak in a community.

Another example of the addition of biology in the novel is on page 155, “It was not multiplying or doing anything, since the monkey’s cells were dead. But if the agent touched living cells, Nancy’s cells, it would come alive and begin to amplify itself. In theory, it could amplify itself around the world in the human species. ” (155, Preston). This passage shows again the maliciousness of the virus and how it functions. Preston likely included this for the scare-factor, and the biology makes the reader realize that yes, this is reality even though it is not unlike a horror story. It has real science to back up its existence.

Preston again utilizes biology in page 156, “In biology, nothing is clear, everything is too complicated, everything is a mess, and just when you think you understand something, you peel off a layer and find deeper complications beneath.” (Preston, 156). This quotation sums up biology as an incredible and complex science, and how important it is, albeit frightening. In this Ebola case, biology is where the virus exists, in the miniscule cells and nuclei. Preston included this quote because it effectively portrays how complicated biology is, and the amount of work that goes into researching strains, like Ebola.

On page 160, I noticed an amusing mix of humor and biological principles “He rested that day in a hut, and gave himself a transfusion of two bags of blood serum that supposedly contained antibodies that might protect him from Ebola virus – he had carried the bags with him, chilled on ice, and now he hoped they would save his life.” (Preston, 160). This passage shows again how paranoid doctors would be around their patients, and how careless accidents can ruin a life. The physician here poked himself with a needle that was previously in a woman who was suspected to have Ebola. The antibodies spoken here were a person’s blood who is immune to the virus, which shows the resolution many believed would work in this time of panic.

Lastly, Preston uses this obvious allusion to biology “That sloughing of the gut was a class sign. The intestine was blitzed, completely full of uncoagulated, runny blood, and at the same time the monkey had massive blood clotting in the intestinal muscles. The clotting had shut off blood circulation to the gut, and the cells in the gut subsequently died” (Preston, 183). This paragraph gives graphic imagery of the insides of the monkey and how the virus was wreaking havoc on the cells and internal organs of the animals. The description of blood and tissue portrays how brutal the virus is to the primates. This was likely included for the shock value we all felt as we witnessed the bloody aftermath of the virus. It is also useful in giving the novel scientific credibility, as using less scientific words would lead to a large misconception as to how serious the damage is.

This book impacted me because I remember a few years ago, that many people were in a panic over the Ebola outbreak in Africa, and that it was brought over by some travelers. The frenzy it sent people into was terrifying, and the topic of Ebola made me think of the time that it was suspected someone in Humble, down the street from my old school contracted the virus. H1N1 was also prevalent in my younger years, as both my cousin contracted it, and my childhood friend. They both lived, but had mild cases and thankfully caught it early because of the panic everyone felt when they got sick around those times. Epidemics such as these are scary to us because of how contagious they are.

I believe College Board thought this book would be beneficial to Biology students because it is a useful application to biology and it is relatable and easy to comprehend. It is very effective in scaring the reader into fascination with viruses and how they are as powerful as they are.

I think this book is a great one for biology students because it is very easy to read but also somewhat in depth in biology without going over the reader’s head. It is very useful fro applying and understanding concepts learned in AP Biology.

I liked this book a lot because of how interesting it was that the novel was almost suspenseful, although it was non-fiction. The book kept me extremely interested as to how the vaccine would be found, if it would be, and how many lives the virus would take. The symptoms and results of the virus was a very scary thing to read, and it makes the reader very paranoid about viruses, as we should be.

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The Carelessness of Humans in The Hot Zone by Richard Preston

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

The Hot Zone is a book written by Richard Preston. Richard Preston is an American writer that has written over a dozen books both fiction and non-fiction. The Hot Zone is a book of non-fiction based off of interviews and extensive research. The primary focus of The Hot Zone is the filoviruses Marburg and Ebola and their origins.

The book is about the filoviruses marburg and ebola and the effect they had on primates in Africa, Asia and North America. The theme of the book is the carelessness of humans. Examples of this are the dirty needles being used in hospitals and the sick monkeys not being examined properly. Page 102 “At the beginning of each day, the nuns at Yambuku.

Hospital would lay out five hypodermic syringes on a table, and they would use them to give shots to patients all day long.” If the nuns were not being so careless they virus may have stayed with the first one to contract it. Page 166 “He had counted twenty-nine deaths out of a shipment of 100 monkeys. That is, nearly a third of the monkeys had died.” If the company in the philippines that distributed the monkeys to the monkey house weren’t so careless and examined the monkeys properly the whole incident could have been avoided. Human carelessness is not the only theme however there is plenty more such as the selfishness of the doctors that could have been infected but chose to keep it a secret to avoid the slammer. The message I received from the book is that humans are to blame for their own mistakes, if dirty needles were not used then people would not have gotten sick. The book did a good job teaching that humans are not perfect and can make mistakes very easily, but with caution disasters can be prevented.

Richard Preston makes his book come alive with vivid imagery and characters that the reader can relate to. The book starts with Charles Monet a simple laborer working at a sugar factory in Kenya when he suddenly gets sick after visiting a cave. The next characters introduced are Nancy and Jerry Jaax. They are husband and wife veterinarians that work for the military. They are portrayed as a good family that can balance work and family. The next character introduced is Eugene Johnson. He is a virus specialist that leads an expedition to kitum cave to search for marburg. The reason he goes to kitum cave is because of Peter Cardinal and Charles Monet’s illnesses after going there. Next up is Peter Jahrling, he is a virologist and co discovered the reston ebola virus. The other co discoverer of the virus is Tom Geisbert, he was an intern at USAMRIID. Other main characters include Clarence James Peters the leader of the reston biohazard operation, Philip Russell who gave the order to dispatch military units to reston and Dr. Joseph B. Mccormick the chief of the special pathogens branch of the C.D.C. he was the doctor that accidently stuck a needle in him when treating Ebola patients. He chose to stay and help the people and later found out that the needle was not ebola but possibly malaria.

The book takes place primarily in the 1980s around Washington D.C and Kenya. It starts in Kenya with Charles Monet living their and then Peter Cardinal visiting and getting sick. Then it goes to Reston, Virginia where the monkey house is and Reston Ebola is discovered.

The story was well written and held my attention throughout. I liked the imagery such as when Nancy cut her hand and it though described it in flawless detail and when she he suit was breached but she was just bleeding from the previous wound.

The Hot Zone was an interesting read that kept me entertained and educated me with facts. I learned a lot more about viruses and diseases and realized just how deadly they can be. It also taught me how humans are the top of the food chain but with one mistake they can all be wiped out from a small virus.

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The Main Themes of The Hot Zone

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

Books, stories, etc.offer alternate insights to someone’s writing, by providinga wide perception of a given topic for viewers. Writers allow readers to have a chance to dig into a problem’s past. Richard Preston’s The Hot Zone is one of suchbooks. A book on the origin of a deadly virus, Ebola, both in the human body and in the outside world. The book is a synthesis of the author’s facts, scientific knowledge, and personal experiences. There are a number of medical issues in this novel. Two of these medical issues will be discussed in this report which include the bravery and teamwork presented by almost everyone in The Hot Zone of it, and human error in the lab and the clinic.

While most of the Hot Zone’s content is disturbing, one of its few high points is the clear courage and coordination demonstrated by the Ebola researchers, particularly USAMRIID’s military soldiers and scientists. Nancy and Jerry Jaaxare excellent examples of researchers who jeopardize their life and sacrifice certain parts of their lifeto make sure others are protected from a possible Ebola epidemic. Jerry’s soldiers’ group also reveals how important these abilities are to curb the virus’ distribution.Even though their job is veryfrightening and hellish — killed hundreds of Ebola-carrying monkeys — they do so with devotion, knowing that they might haveto sacrifice oneself for the sake of the wider public. Several scientists and doctors with these principles exist in the Hot Zone (like Dr. Shem Musoke, who catches Ebola whilst treating patients, also Gene Johnson, who actively works to combat Ebola while being frightened by it), and it is attributable to them, Preston suggests, that the majority of us can live our lives without being conscious of the hostile world of viruses surrounding all of us.

Using research — to support her statements — and horrifying details, Preston clearly indicates that perhaps the spread of viruses such as Ebola (and other viral diseases, such as HIV) is often caused as a result of human error. Either consuming tainted animal meat, transmitting pathogens by sexual intercourse, constructing roads that become plague routes, or using contaminated needles, individuals are regularly exposed to debilitating and destructive diseases.

By fixating onto the Ebola epidemic in Reston — a calm and peaceful neighborhood — Preston clearly states how delicate daily life already is, and also how readily any numberof evolving ailments can wipe it all out. Also, taking precautions, like using spacesuits or other protective garments, donot provide a reliable disease preventative defense. Spacesuits can betorn, oxygen runs low, and syringes (or angry monkeys, or test subjects) will puncture the gloves. Blood is also a grea timage of human vulnerability in this scope. While blood usually transports energy and nutrition, the blood from an infected individual is also a disease-carrying system, and exposure to one bit can lead to contamination, eventuallyresulting in death.With the use of infected/contaminated needles in the Yambuku Mission Hospital as well as the Maridi hospital, to the incompetence of Hazelton Research Products in intentionally buying contaminated monkeys from Philippines, human negligence can be attributed to most of the outbreak incidents depicted in the book. Preston often mentions many cases where neglect may potentially have contributed to an epidemic in varying conditions, including when contaminated needles were left just outside of the Reston plant or even when Dan Dalgard wraps infected monkey specimens in a pure tin foil when presenting the specimens to USAMRIID.

In any case, Preston clearly states that an individual member of the population canassess, and therefore dictate, the risk for a catastrophic epidemic.In summary, Richard Preston’s Hot Zone presents readers with an opportunity to dive into an individual and global experience of the deadly Ebola virus. Several of the topics discussed in this book are vital topics required in the clinic and the laboratory. The book characters’ encounter when interacting/copingwith thedeadly Ebola virus made them fear for their lives, but they also wanted to help others not to be infected with the same lethal virus. Ebola reflects a destructive and lethal power at its purest level, no matter how very much technological advancement develops, and no matter how very much people try to protect themselves, Ebola still finds an infection, and after which, a disease pathway.

As a matter of fact, Ebola is also using human advancement, innovation and globalizationto disperse faster and much further than ever. Ebola does thisin the form of quicker and more efficient modes of transportation, such as highways and aircraft. Therefore,when dealing with medical problems, it isn’t just about treating a disease. It is also the prevention of the spreading of the disease.

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Analysis of the Deadly Virus in Richard Preston’s The Hot Zone

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

The Hot Zone

This non-fiction book was written in 1994. It covers the time period between 1967 and 1963. It’s about deadly viruses, particularly strains of the Ebola virus and the Marburg virus, and tells how easily they can be spread and how quickly and violently they can kill. It’s a disturbing book because there is no known cure for Ebola.

The book started by telling the story of Charles Monet, a worker in a sugar factory that lived in Africa near Mount Elgon. He contracted the Marburg virus and died. It’s believed that he may have somehow gotten in contact with the virus when he was in a cave called Kitum cave on Mount Elgon-but no one seems to be certain.

Monet visited Kitum cave (which is a petrified forest) on New Year’s Day in 1980. He got a headache the seventh day after he visited the cave. Then he got a severe backache. The third day after his headache started, he began to vomit-eventually got the dry heaves. Over the course of the next several days he got progressively more ill and his personality changed. He became resentful, sullen, and didn’t always remember where he was. By the time he went to the local hospital, his head was turning black and blue. The local hospital didn’t know how to treat him so they told him to get on a plane and go to the hospital in Nairobi hospital, which he did.

Charles Monet became very ill on the plane ride. By the time he got to Nairobi, his face muscles were drooping because the connective tissue in his face was dissolving. The Marburg virus was basically eating him alive. When Monet got to the Nairobi Hospital, he was not even treated right away. He had to sit in the waiting room, where he eventually went into shock.

Dr. Shem Musoke tried to save Charles Monet’s life, but it was too late. The virus had already destroyed his body. While Dr. Musoke was trying to save Charles Monet, he was infected with the virus, but Dr. Musoke survived. Dr. David Silverstein was the doctor who took care of Dr. Musoke. Dr. Silverstein sent samples of Dr. Musoke’s serum to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta Georgia. The center discovered that Dr. Musoke had the Marburg virus.

Marburg is thought to be an African virus that first erupted in Germany in 1967. It erupted in a factory that produced vaccines using kidney cells from African monkeys. The virus was in at least one of the monkeys shipped to Germany. The virus spread through the monkeys and then jumped species, erupting in the human population. Thirty-one people caught the virus-seven of them died in pools of their own blood.

Marburg is a virus that is in a family of viruses called filovirus. The Ebola viruses are also filovirus, but with the exception of Ebola Reston virus (which hasn’t killed any humans), the other Ebola viruses are even more deadly than the Marburg virus. One strain of Ebola, Ebola Zaire, has a death rate of 90%. It could virtually wipe out most of the earth’s population if it was able to amplify itself in humans. It was pointed out in the book that with today’s global environment and the ease of getting around the world, a virus could be spread throughout the whole world in as little as seven days. Seven to nine days is the incubation period for the Ebola viruses. The virus could be on every continent of the world before the first person that got it becomes sick. That’s because Ebola Zaire, is a level 4 hot agent, that travels from host to host very quickly. That is a very, very scary prospect. We are so lucky this hasn’t happened yet, but the threat it there.

These viruses are thought to have come from the African rain forests, just like AIDS. As the ecological balance of the rain forests becomes more and more unbalanced due to humans destroying it, who knows how many viruses or other deadly diseases that are dormant in the rain forest could infect the human race. It’s like Richard Preston said in the book. He said it seemed like the rain forests are declaring war on the species that is trying to destroy them. The rain forests are fighting back by trying to destroy the human race before the human race destroys them.

After the book tells the stories of Charles Monet and Dr Musoke, and how Ebola first jumped into the human species in Germany, the book goes on to talk about more virus outbreaks in Africa where people died tortuous and gruesome deaths. This isn’t a book to read if a person has a weak stomach. The descriptions of what the virus does to people are very graphic. I wouldn’t recommend reading this book right after eating.

A large part of the book is devoted to an outbreak of Ebola at a company located in Reston, Virginia that imported African monkeys. The book describes how the military and the Centers for Disease Control got involved with trying to isolate what was killing the monkeys in the monkey house and discovering that it was a strain of Ebola that was eventually called Reston. Luckily, Reston is not fatal to humans. No one who came in contact with the infected monkeys ever developed Ebola.

The book goes into the political fighting that happened between the military and the Centers for De Control because they both wanted control over the situation at the monkey house in Virginia. The author also delves into the personal lives of some of the people that were involved in various aspects of this situation.

Nancy Jaax was one of those people. She was a veterinary pathologist with the military. She worked with the deadly Ebola viruses, handling the hot agents and doing autopsies on monkeys that had been infected with it. During the time that Nancy was right in the middle of dealing with the fact that her father was dying. Instead of going to see her dying father, even after he called her asking her to come see him, she thought it was more important to work on the monkeys-monkeys who were already dead. It’s sad that she thought no one else could handle her job for a few days while she paid a last visit to her dad. I don’t think she understood how important human relationships are.

All the monkeys at the monkey house in Virginia were eventually destroyed because no one was able to stop the virus and since there is no known cure for Ebola and no vaccine to prevent it. As of the writing of the book, the building where the infected monkeys lived was vacant and abandoned.

This book was so scary because everything described in this book really happened. When I think about what could happened to humans if one of the deadly viruses was able to amplify itself in humans, I get the shivers. Experts believe that the viruses are dormant somewhere in Africa, and maybe other places too, just waiting to find a host to amplify itself in-a host that could be human.

Another thing that scares me is that there are tubes of this virus preserved at military institutions and the Centers for Disease Control, and also at other research facilities around the world. I shudder to think what would happened if some of that virus got into the hands of the wrong people. Someone evil could wipe out entire populations with that virus.

Ebola is a threat to the entire human race. Just like we don’t know what the full effect of AIDS will be on the human population, we don’t know what the Ebola viruses may someday do to us if they are able to infect us. On top of that, we don’t know what other evils lurk in the rainforests. We continue to harvest and raze the rainforests without thinking about what we might be bringing into the human race. To me, this makes the preservation of what is left of the rain forests even more important. I think it’s incredibly dangerous to upset the ecological balance any more than it already is, especially if we want to preserve human life as we know it.

I recommend this book to adult readers who are able to stomach graphic descriptions of some pretty horrifying events. The story it tells is one the people should be aware of. They should know about the dangers lurking on this planet.

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The Hot Zone by Richard Preston: Style Critique

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

“Style Critique on The Hot Zone”

“Lassa is a Level 4 virus from West Africa, and it was one of Peter Jahrling’s favorite life forms-he thought it was fascinating and beautiful, in certain ways. He had held in his gloved hands virtually every hot agent known, except for Ebola and Marburg. When people asked him why he didn’t work with them, he replied, “I don’t particularly feel like dying.”

Richard Preston traces the known paths of Ebola and Marburg in The Hot Zone. He tells of their discovery, effects, and the outbreaks. Level 4 scientists for the Army, the CDC, and several civilian scientists track down the viruses in order to conduct tests and find the secret hiding place of the viruses. The height of the story occurs when Ebola Zaire is discovered in a monkey house near Washington, D.C. and the Army has to decontaminate the entire facility. Luckily, the airborne strain only affected monkeys and didn’t infect humans. Preston concludes with his own trip to Africa to look at a possible reservoir of the viruses.

Preston’s style is sensational journalism. He uses graphic detail when describing the effects of the viruses to make it sensational. Doctors would be brief and scientific in their reports on the symptoms. Preston description’s are not brief and are graphic. ” His face lost all appearance of life and set itself into and expressionless make…the eyeballs themselves seemed almost frozen in their sockets, and they turned bright red. He began to look like a zombie…and then you see that his lips are smeared with something slippery and red, mixed with black specks, as if he has been chewing coffee grounds. …. He is going into shock. He leans over, head on his knees, and brings up an incredible quantity of blood from his stomach and spills it onto the floor with a gasping groan. The only sound is a choking in his throat as he continues to vomit while unconscious. Then comes a sound like a bedsheet being torn in half, which is the sound of his bowels opening and venting blood. The blood is mixed with intestinal lining.” No doctor would ever describe the effects like Preston did. He is graphic to make it more interesting and exciting. He “spices” it up to attract and draw the attention of the reader, to get his point across.

Preston occasionally adds the character’s thoughts as they recalled them during their interviews with him. Preston states that ” if you ask a person, “What were you thinking?” you may get an answer that is richer and more revealing of the human condition that any stream of thoughts a novelist could invent.” He’s right; fact is stranger than fiction. ” Aw, crap! They’ll put me into the Slammer. And Tony will be filling out accident reports while I’m breaking with Ebola. And a week later, I’ll be in the Submarine. Shit! Jerry’s in Texas. And I didn’t go to the bank today. There’s no money in the house. The kids are home with Mrs. Trapane, and she needs to be paid. I didn’t go the market today. There’s no food in the house. How are the kids going to eat if I’m in the Slammer?” Preston used their thoughts to make it more realistic and to give the human perspective. Their thoughts showed that some were “*censored* scared” and didn’t want to touch it while others were fascinated with the virus and wanted to work in Level 4.

Preston tries to develop the characters, make them more reals. He gives background information, physical description, and occasionally talks about some personal habits or what others thought of them. “Some of the officers at Fort Detrick had noticed a certain abrupt quality in her hand motions and had accused her of having hands that were “too quick” to handle delicate work in dangerous situations. Nancy had begun martial-arts training partly because she hoped to make her gestures cool and smooth and powerful, and also because she had felt the frustrations of a woman officer trying to advance her career in the Army.” Preston’s outline of the characters makes it easier to understand their actions and why they were involved with the viruses. It makes them more of a human, not just a character in some story.

The story narrated by Preston. He is the omniscient narrator; he comments and acts like he knows their thoughts. “First Nancy inspected the monkey, looking through the bars. It was a large male, and he looked as if her was really dead. She saw that he still had his canine fangs, and that made her nervous.” Periodically he tells about his interviews in the 1st person, “Are you worried about a species-threatening event?” He stared at me. “What the hell do you mean by that?” “I mean a virus that wipes us out.” The final chapter, when he visits Kitum Cave in Africa, is also told in the 1st person. Preston uses the 1st person to make it more personal. He also uses it at the end in order to portray his feelings toward the subject.

” Ebola had risen in these rooms, flashed its colors, fed, and subsided into the forest. It will be back.”

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The Critical Review of the Style and Narration of The Hot Zone

December 10, 2020 by Essay Writer

“Style Critique on The Hot Zone”

“Lassa is a Level 4 virus from West Africa, and it was one of Peter Jahrling’s favorite life forms-he thought it was fascinating and beautiful, in certain ways. He had held in his gloved hands virtually every hot agent known, except for Ebola and Marburg. When people asked him why he didn’t work with them, he replied, “I don’t particularly feel like dying.”

Richard Preston traces the known paths of Ebola and Marburg in The Hot Zone. He tells of their discovery, effects, and the outbreaks. Level 4 scientists for the Army, the CDC, and several civilian scientists track down the viruses in order to conduct tests and find the secret hiding place of the viruses. The height of the story occurs when Ebola Zaire is discovered in a monkey house near Washington, D.C. and the Army has to decontaminate the entire facility. Luckily, the airborne strain only affected monkeys and didn’t infect humans. Preston concludes with his own trip to Africa to look at a possible reservoir of the viruses.

Preston’s style is sensational journalism. He uses graphic detail when describing the effects of the viruses to make it sensational. Doctors would be brief and scientific in their reports on the symptoms. Preston description’s are not brief and are graphic. ” His face lost all appearance of life and set itself into and expressionless make…the eyeballs themselves seemed almost frozen in their sockets, and they turned bright red. He began to look like a zombie…and then you see that his lips are smeared with something slippery and red, mixed with black specks, as if he has been chewing coffee grounds. …. He is going into shock. He leans over, head on his knees, and brings up an incredible quantity of blood from his stomach and spills it onto the floor with a gasping groan. The only sound is a choking in his throat as he continues to vomit while unconscious. Then comes a sound like a bedsheet being torn in half, which is the sound of his bowels opening and venting blood. The blood is mixed with intestinal lining.” No doctor would ever describe the effects like Preston did. He is graphic to make it more interesting and exciting. He “spices” it up to attract and draw the attention of the reader, to get his point across.

Preston occasionally adds the character’s thoughts as they recalled them during their interviews with him. Preston states that ” if you ask a person, “What were you thinking?” you may get an answer that is richer and more revealing of the human condition that any stream of thoughts a novelist could invent.” He’s right; fact is stranger than fiction. ” Aw, crap! They’ll put me into the Slammer. And Tony will be filling out accident reports while I’m breaking with Ebola. And a week later, I’ll be in the Submarine. Shit! Jerry’s in Texas. And I didn’t go to the bank today. There’s no money in the house. The kids are home with Mrs. Trapane, and she needs to be paid. I didn’t go the market today. There’s no food in the house. How are the kids going to eat if I’m in the Slammer?” Preston used their thoughts to make it more realistic and to give the human perspective. Their thoughts showed that some were “*censored* scared” and didn’t want to touch it while others were fascinated with the virus and wanted to work in Level 4.

Preston tries to develop the characters, make them more reals. He gives background information, physical description, and occasionally talks about some personal habits or what others thought of them. “Some of the officers at Fort Detrick had noticed a certain abrupt quality in her hand motions and had accused her of having hands that were “too quick” to handle delicate work in dangerous situations. Nancy had begun martial-arts training partly because she hoped to make her gestures cool and smooth and powerful, and also because she had felt the frustrations of a woman officer trying to advance her career in the Army.” Preston’s outline of the characters makes it easier to understand their actions and why they were involved with the viruses. It makes them more of a human, not just a character in some story.

The story narrated by Preston. He is the omniscient narrator; he comments and acts like he knows their thoughts. “First Nancy inspected the monkey, looking through the bars. It was a large male, and he looked as if her was really dead. She saw that he still had his canine fangs, and that made her nervous.” Periodically he tells about his interviews in the 1st person, “Are you worried about a species-threatening event?” He stared at me. “What the hell do you mean by that?” “I mean a virus that wipes us out.” The final chapter, when he visits Kitum Cave in Africa, is also told in the 1st person. Preston uses the 1st person to make it more personal. He also uses it at the end in order to portray his feelings toward the subject.

” Ebola had risen in these rooms, flashed its colors, fed, and subsided into the forest. It will be back.”

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Literary Analysis of The Hot Zone by Richard Preston

December 10, 2020 by Essay Writer

The Hot Zone

Setting:

The setting g takes place in two major places. Reston Maryland which is a suburb of Washington DC. and the second major area is in Kenya Africa. The story takes place in the 1980’s.

Main Characters:

Since this story is a true story there is no one character that is a main character. The author does not create the story around any one main character so I’ll just list every character I can remember from the book.

  1. Charles Monet: He was the first host to the deadly ebola virus breakout in Africa. He was 56 years old and was kind of a loner according to the authors interviews with people.
  2. Dr. Mosoke: He was Charles Monets doctor when Charles crashed and bled out which means when the host suddenly starts bleeding infectious blood out of every orifice in the body.
  3. Nancy Jaax: She was a veterinary pathologist at a military fort in Maryland..
  4. Jerry Jaax: He was a veterinarian and husband to Nancy Jaax.
  5. Peter Jahrling: He was a disease expert at Fort Detrick
  6. Gene Johnson: He was in charge of the Reston operation. He also was the discoverer of Ebola Sudan.
  7. Nun: The Nun’s name was unknown but she had the very first recorded case of Ebola Zaire which is the most dangerous of the three strains.

Summary:

This is a true story. On New Year’s Day 1980 a man named Charles Monet went on a trip with a girl friend of his up to Mnt. Elgon in West Kenya. They spent the night there and went to a large cave there called Kitcum cave. After his trip to Kitcum cave he went home and three days later had a huge headache that wouldn’t go away. That is the first symptom of this deadly disease. A few days later he went to the doctors and they told him he should go to a bigger hospital in Nairobi. Charles caught a flight to Nairobi an the ninth day after his visit to kitcum cave. All through the flight to Nairobi he was throwing up blood mixed with a black liquid. When he got to the hospital he sat down and waited to be served. Then his spine went limp and nerveless and he lost all sense of balance. he started going into shock. He then started throwing up an incredible amount of blood from his stomach and spilt it on to the floor. The people who were there said the only sound was the choking in his throat from his constant vomiting while he is unconscious. Then came the sound of bed sheets being torn in half which is the sound of his bowels opening up and venting blood from the anus. The blood is mixed with intestinal lining. His gut is sloughed. The linings of his intestines come off and were being expelled from his body along with huge amounts of blood. This dying process which happens to nine out of ten people who come in contact with the deadly disease is called crashing and bleeding. Samples of his blood were flown to all the major disease labs in the world. The disease was a Marburg Strain.

In Sudan the same types of deaths were wiping out whole tribes. So Gene Johnson flew over there and worked with sick members of the tribes to try and find a cure. This strain of Marburg was called Ebola Sudan for were it was found. Later in Zaire there was an out post of missionaries who would give vaccine shots and penicillin to local tribes. One of the nuns there became sick with a similar disease. She died and her blood was sent to disease labs all over the world. The strain was called Ebola Zaire since it was discovered in Zaire.

In Reston Maryland there was a monkey house that would ship monkeys all over the US. to labs for medical experiments. Suddenly all the monkeys started dying in one room. Tom Jahrling from fort Detrick came down and took a look at the monkeys and took some samples. He took back and he and Tom Geisbert looked at it and thought it was just a small monkey virus and try smelled it which is a way to tell what something was. They couldn’t tell what it was so they looked at it under a electron microscope and it looked allot like Marburg. They were scared because they had smelled the container of the marburg. They didn’t tell anyone that they had been exposed.

The Military and the C.D.C. (Center for Disease Control) sealed off the whole building and Nancy Jaax and Jerry Jaax led squads of people inside the building wearing space suits. Two people while working inside the building were cut and their space suits were torn which means they were exposed to the virus. They found out that the virus they were working with was a close relative to Ebola Zaire. They killed all the monkeys in the building and locks their corpses up because they were predicting that if the virus got out it would total the human population. It would be like another Black Plague, but the Black Plague only killed 50% of those infected while this killed 90%. They put a special chemical in the building and let it sit four three days. After the tree days nothing was alive in the entire building not even a tiny microscopic virus could live. But four people had been exposed to the virus and surprisingly they all lived they later realized that the virus must have mutated so it would not harm humans but if it mutated again and could effect humans it would be devastating. This new virus was called Ebola Reston.

Opinion:

I thought the book was really scary. It was scary to see that there are diseases that could completely wipe us out and that we got really lucky at Reston. I thought the book was also very educating. From a scale of one to ten I give it a ten because the author uses great detail. for instance when the author tells the effects of the disease.

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The Critical Overview of Ebola’s Viral Strains based on The Hot Zone by Richard Preston

December 10, 2020 by Essay Writer

Quiet and undetected like a ninja, a virus can quickly attack. Richard Preston describes the stealth behaviors of the different viral strains of Ebola and its development in the non-fiction novel, The Hot Zone. The Hot Zone explains the outbreak of the Ebola virus, demonstrating the danger of exposure to this virus. Several outbreaks and deaths are described in the novel, but through all Preston’s research and writing on the book, he has learned how to keep himself safe during his explorations. Viruses are spread from the lack of resources such as clean medical supplies, funding, and a general lack of medical treatment knowledge.

In the novel, The Hot Zone, the Ebola virus was first discovered in Africa. It was a new type of virus that was unknown to the people there. When the virus started to infect patients in the hospital, it was not only because of the virus itself that caused it, but it was also the lack of clean medical supplies. When nuns were giving patients injections for protection from the Ebola virus, Preston described, “There were five needles a day to give injections to patients” (Preston 102). The nuns at the hospital were reusing dirty needles for hundreds of patients, and as a result, caused an Ebola outbreak. To clarify, when reusing dirty needles it is very dangerous because infected patients can leave behind minuscule traces of infected tissue, which then can be injected into healthy patients’ bloodstreams, therefore making them sick. For this reason, when there is a lack of clean medical supplies the possibility of a virus outbreak is high-risk.

Furthermore, a virus outbreak can arise effortlessly due to no money or an inadequate amount. Poor countries such as Guinea and Liberia, has a bad health infrastructure and young adults with little or none education. According to who.int, “Road systems, transportation services, and telecommunication are weak. These weaknesses greatly delayed the transportation of the patient to treatment centres and samples to laboratories”. With no money to build a hospital, school, or transportation system, the likelihood of a virus spreading is more prone to occur. Compare to other countries that has a lot of money, people have less risk of dying or getting infected because they have educated doctors, special medicine, and good transportation system. Therefore, with no funding to stop the spread of a virus, it is likely for it to continue to infect others.

There are countless ways that a virus outbreak can occur, and another reason why is the lack of knowledge. Western African countries, which had never experienced an Ebola outbreak, were poorly prepared for this unexpected disease at every level. wth.int stated, “…early detection of the first cases to orchestrating an appropriate response. Clinicians had never managed cases. No laboratory had ever diagnosed a patient specimen. No government had ever witnessed the social and economic upheaval that can accompany an outbreak of this disease. Populations could not understand what hit them or why”. With no information about a new virus breakout, doctors do not know the symptoms of the virus as well as finding a vaccine for it. Because of this, the virus can spread even much faster to patients, family, and friends because they don’t know how to keep themselves safe as well as keeping it from spreading. In addition, wth.int presented, “When patients were taken to treatment or transit centres, anxious families often received little information about the patient’s condition, outcome, or even the place of burial”. This article expresses that with no knowledge of the virus, there are no treatments for it and doctors can’t do anything to help the patients. When there is no cure for a virus, victims often have shorter life spans so they die much faster. In brief, information and knowledge are very critical when a virus breaks out. Without an important pieces of information, countless people will fall victim to the virus.

In summary, there are many factors that will lead to a virus outbreak such as, lack of resources which includes clean medical supplies, no funding, and a lack of general medical treatment knowledge. These examples demonstrated different types of situations that would emerge when a virus breaks out. There are many ways to prevent a virus from spreading as well as many other factors that contribute it to infect people. With this in mind with enough resources and knowledge about medical treatment, a virus outbreak can be prevented.

Though Miss Brill and Granny Weatherall seem to lead absolute different lives they are both very observant women. Miss Brill was quite observant on her Sunday afternoons in the park. She sat in her “special” seat and observe everything and everyone. She could notice any slight change from last Sundays afternoon. “Wasn’t the conductor wearing a new coat, too?” (Mansfield, 101).

Granny Weatherall is in touch with reality while Miss Brill fantasizes up a life on her Sunday afternoons to forget about everything else. Miss Brill is lonely while Granny Weatherall is overwhelmed with company. One main characteristic the two protagonists have in common is their observant eye. Ultimately Miss Brill and Granny Weatherall have more differences then similarities.

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