Viruses, Plagues, and History: Past, Present and Future

Viruses, Plagues, and History: Past, Present and Future

by Michael B. A. Oldstone
     
 

The story of viruses and humanity is a story of fear and ignorance, of grief and heartbreak, and of great bravery and sacrifice. Michael Oldstone tells all these stories as he illuminates the history of the devastating diseases that have tormented humanity, focusing mostly on the most famous viruses.
Oldstone begins with smallpox, polio, and measles. Nearly

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Overview

The story of viruses and humanity is a story of fear and ignorance, of grief and heartbreak, and of great bravery and sacrifice. Michael Oldstone tells all these stories as he illuminates the history of the devastating diseases that have tormented humanity, focusing mostly on the most famous viruses.
Oldstone begins with smallpox, polio, and measles. Nearly 300 million people were killed by smallpox in this century alone and the author presents a vivid account of the long campaign to eradicate this lethal killer. Oldstone then describes the fascinating viruses that have captured headlines in more recent years: Ebola, Hantavirus, mad cow disease (a frightening illness made worse by government mishandling and secrecy), and, of course, AIDS. And he tells us of the many scientists watching and waiting even now for the next great plague, monitoring influenza strains to see whether the deadly variant from 1918—a viral strain that killed over 20 million people in 1918-1919—will make a comeback. For this revised edition, Oldstone includes discussions of new viruses like SARS, bird flu, virally caused cancers, chronic wasting disease, and West Nile, and fully updates the original text with new findings on particular viruses.
Viruses, Plagues, and History paints a sweeping portrait of humanity's long-standing conflict with our unseen viral enemies. Oldstone's book is a vivid history of a fascinating field, and a highly reliable dispatch from an eminent researcher on the front line of this ongoing campaign.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195327311
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
11/02/2009
Edition description:
Revised
Pages:
400
Sales rank:
365,589
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

Michael B. A. Oldstone is Professor and Head of the Viral-Immunobiology Laboratory at The Scripps Research Institute. A leader in the field, he has been the recipient of numerous awards and honors and has served or serves on several national and international committees charged with understanding, treating and eliminating viral diseases. He was a consultant to the World Health Organization for the eradication of poliomyelitis and measles, and was a member of the SAGE Executive Board. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

Table of Contents

Pt. 1 Viruses, Plagues, and History

Ch. 1 A General Introduction 3

Ch. 2 Introduction to the Principles of Virology 10

Ch. 3 Introduction to the Principles of Immunology 41

Pt. 2 Success Stories

Ch. 4 Smallpox 53

Ch. 5 Yellow Fever 102

Ch. 6 Measles Virus 135

Ch. 7 Poliomyelitis 159

Pt. 3 Present and Future Challenges

Ch. 8 An Overview of Newly Emerging Viral Plagues: The Hemorrhagic Fevers 199

Ch. 9 Lassa Fever 207

Ch. 10 Ebola 214

Ch. 11 Hantavirus 221

Ch. 12 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS): The First Pandemic of the Twenty-First Century 226

Ch. 13 West Nile Virus: Deaths of Crows and Humans 234

Ch. 14 Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV): AIDS, the Current Plague 251

Ch. 15 Mad Cow Disease and Englishmen: Spongiform Encephalopathies - Prion Disease 284

Ch. 16 Influenza Virus, the Plague That May Return 305

Ch. 17 Conclusions and Future Predictions 332

References 343

Index 371\

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