Hello :3

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Re: Hello :3

Post by Zon3r » Wed 30. Jul 2014, 23:11

What happened now?


Re: Hello :3

Post by [P]etya » Mon 13. Oct 2014, 19:00

Since so many ppl are worried about Ebola (not the river, the disease) I'm going to do a short description about the disease, which hopefully will relieve most ppl who are worried about it.

Ebola is caused by a filovirus and is a cousin of the Marburg, another virus which causes the so called hemorrhagic fever. A little interesting fact: filoviruses were thought to be dead, until they disvovered Marburg. Ebola was identified in 1976 when it caused a mysterious outbreak in Zaire, which claimed the life of many. First scientists and doctors thought that it was caused by the Marburg virus, however all of the tests was negative for that virus, but soon they discovered that the disease was caused by another virus, and they named it Ebola. Actually the Ebola virus is quite ancient because it caused its first outbreak in the sncient Athens.

Ebola is a disease which is hard to identify, because the first symptoms are rather unspecific. The victim of the disease experiences muscle and joint pain, abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhea, and of course fever of 38.6°C or higher. The disease becomes obvious when the patient experiences unexplained bleeding (don't imagine this bleeding like that a river of blood will flow out your eyes or your nose, the bleeding isn't heavy, but it won't go away). In this stage the patient has internal bleeding, however external bleeding may not occur (some survivors told that they didn't experience external bleeding at all). Another specific symptom of this disease is the hiccuping, which occurs at the late stage of the disease. That stage is the one where most ppl die. Other symptoms include bloody diarrhea, blood vomit and purple stains on the skin (which are the result of the bleeding).

A little about the mechanism of the disease. Ebola attacks the immune system in a similar fashion as the HIV does: destroying the T-lymphocite cells which are responsible for maintaining the immune response. The virus is capable of evading the immune system long enough and multiple viruses can infect one cell and since they can evade the immune system, it won't create anti-bodies against the pathogen. But instead of compromising the immune system, the Ebola virus triggers a potentially lethal immune response, called the cytokine storm. This is the peak of the illness. When the cytokine storm happens, the immune system falls out of control and turns on the body, attacking organs and rupturing the blood vessels. So shortly it's the immune system which kills the people, not the virus.

While many ppl claim that Ebola is a highly contagious disease, it isn't entirely true. The virus can only infect via direct contact of the infected fluids and the virus can get through the mucous membranes and wounds. So in a well developed country it is unlikely to cause big outbreak in modern cities. When an Ebola outbreak happens, mostly it happens in Africa. Why? First the suspected host of the virus lives in Africa, which is the fruit bat. Africans are known to hunt and eat bats, so it is quite easy for them to get the nasty virus. The funeral ceremonies also include kissing the dead, washing the dead, so they contact the contaminated body fluids without knowing that the loved one died to a deadly pathogen. The health care isn't very well developed so caretakers, nurses and doctors may also get the disease. While Ebola has the mortality rate of 50%-90% and it is considered a biohazard level 4 disease, it is rather unlikely to cause outbreaks and eventually a big pandemic. The survivors will remain infectious for rather long time and it takes rather long time for the body to finally get rid of the viruses.

There is a cure for the disease: the Zmapp. It contains monoclonal anti-bodies which will eliminate the virus, however this cure still needs to be tested and currently there isn't enough of it to do the tests. The Achilles heel of the disease is that it relies on a cholesterol transporting protein, the Niemann Pick C1 protein. Ppl who lack this protein are immune to the disease, however at the moment it isn't possible to use this weakness, because it would require gene-engineering which isn't so developed. Survivors are known to be immune to the disease for 10 years, but many scientists suspect that this protection is a lifetime one. Treating the disease: the most important things are to maintain the oxygen supply of the body, to prevent the severe loss of electrolytes and to prevent the severe lack of blood via transfusion.

I hope some ppl will find these information satisfying. :P