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Ebola followup NEW!

Sun Jan 28 14:24:16 EST 1996

Open letter to Virology Group and Hans Andersson:

Dear Mr. Andersson,

I hope my post to the virology group was not entirely misunderstood.  If 
so, let me tell you that it was written in ignorance of your credentials, and
was not intended to be insulting or facetious.  In your exchanges with Ian
York and Ed Regis, yours seemed the most well-informed and reasoned 
arguments about the threat that Ebola and other infrequent, but emerging, 
viruses pose.  That you cited a scientific journal article leant great weight 
to your opinions IMHO, and we "scientists" still seem to have a hard time 
backing our opinions similarly.  I was sincerely grateful for the "return to 
science" as opposed to speculative debate.  While I appreciate the high 
visibility that _The Hot Zone_ and _The Coming Plague_ brought to the 
field of virology research, I am concerned about the degree of drama and 
sensationalism that they provoked.  I do consider emerging infectious 
diseases to be a major threat to human welfare globally, and the scenarios 
you describe are not unrealistic.  My reference to citing journalists as 
sources pertained to virologists using The Hot Zone as if it were the Journal 
of Virology.  From your latest "follow-up" I can see that, regardless of 
professional credentials, my impression of your opinions as being well-
founded in good research was valid.  Accept my apologies if I left an 
impression to the contrary.

Heidi Hoff
Dept. of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Univ. of Nebraska - Lincoln

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