What If a Deadly New Virus Jumped from Animals to Humans? 

In a rapidly interconnected world, the dangers and threats posed by virulent strains of terrifying infectious diseases has only multiplied. On the watch for deadly pandemics is Nathan Wolfe, acclaimed virus hunter. Wolfe spoke to the World Economic Forum about future pandemics on the horizon.
TIME: http://goo.gl/bYZDf
See: Hunting for the Next Pandemic: http://goo.gl/s1KT4

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One Response to What If a Deadly New Virus Jumped from Animals to Humans? 

  1. Dr. RH Bennett says:

    Sometimes titles of topics are unnecessarily alarmist. The word IF creates a binary of confusion. If and event will occur or if it will not will appear on face value to be equally probable. I can recall similar titles about If a large meteor should strike the earth. The fact of the matter is the probability is very low on an annual basis but very high if the measure is all time. Pandemics have occurred and will occur again yet the probability of a new pathogenic virus jumping across species is very low and at the same time have extreme virulence and communicability is also very low. This little model I created only has three assumptions in it and in the real situation there is far more than three. The likelihood is the product of those probabilities driving it even lower. An illustration that could help ally fear is to ask the question what is the probability of a women having 5 children of the same sex. Yes its wise and prudent to learn the ecology of pathogens in this modern world, but on my list of priorities its low. Rather slowing the progression of antimicrobial resistance in our society deserves far more attention and research. In the US alone 70 K people die from nosicomial and untreatable infections every year. No if about it and we were warned many times over the last decade to no avail.

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