Outbreak of Ebola

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Ebola was first recognized in 1976 as the cause of outbreaks of disease in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (then known as Zaire) and in Sudan. About three hundred people in each of the two nations were infected with the virus, resulting in a mortality rate of 88% in Zaire, and 53% in Sudan (Bulletin of the WHO 1978). The disease as it was discovered spread through direct contact of unmans to humans, and then thought, from non-human primates to humans. The epidemic was a result of unsafe and unsanitary hospital practices, and non-sterilized medical equipment. The disease was then contained, however sporadic outbreaks of the Zaire and Sudan Ebola subtypes have risen in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Uganda, and Sudan; one of the latest outbreaks was in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in September of 2007. Therefore we ask ourselves, why is it important to discuss the Ebola virus? The answer is simple; because we need to know how the disease infects humans, and how researchers and medical professionals can prevent the virus from entering the organism. It is important to know that humans are not the host organism, or Ebola's natural reservoir; humans simply become infected when they come in contact with the infected host, such as non-human primate, pigs, or even insects. In 2005, it was reported that fruit bats may serve as the natural reservoir of Ebola. Fruit bats live in regions of Africa that include areas where Ebola outbreaks have occurred and

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