The Basics (Science is Awesome)
What is the basic difference between an epidemic and a pandemic? In an epidemic, an infectious disease spreads quickly between people; however, this will be relatively confined to a geographic area, country, or even a continent. The Ebola epidemic in West Africa is an example. On the other hand, a pandemic means that this infectious disease spreads quickly to other continents, basically causing disease globally, most likely resulting in high fatality rates.
Examples of infections that can potentially cause a pandemic are the bird flu (avian influenza), SARS or MERS like infections that are caused by viruses in the coronavirus family, and of course Ebola and similar so-called hemorrhagic viruses.
Viruses More Likely to Cause a Pandemic
Why are these viruses more likely to cause a pandemic?
All of these viruses are so-called RNA (not DNA) viruses. This means there are more mutations happening … Continue reading →
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