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A fine powder or liquid-droplet mist dispersed into the air. May be natural or a weapon
"Multiplication of a virus. Takes place inside cells of a living host or in cells in a test tube or inside a bioreactor. "
"An antibacterial drug derived from another microbe."
"Defense protein that recognizes invading microbes and helps to kill them."
"Complex foreign molecules on microbes recognized by antibodies."
antigenic drift
"Gradual change in the antigens of influenza virus by mutation." [and in other viruses]
antigenic shift
"Major change in the antigens of influenza virus so no one has a defense against it. Leads to pandemics." [and in other viruses]
"An antibacterial drug either chemically synthesized or antibiotic."
"a virus borne by arthropod vectors"
"locally acquired"
"Literally, bacteria in the bloodstream."
biological weapon (bioweapon)
"A living infectious organism used as a weapon or a nonliving toxin derived from a living organism and used as a weapon."
"A tanklike production device designed for amplification of a virus."
biosafety level
"specific combinations of work practices, safety equipment, and facilities to minimize exposure of workers to infectious agents; these range from level 1 for agents not usually causing human disease to level 4 for agents posing a high risk of life-threatening disease, such as the Ebola virus"
"The use, or threatened use, of biological agents to promote or spread fear or intimidation upon an individual, a specific group, or the population as a whole for religious, political, ideological, financial, or personal purposes." (Source:
blue suit
"A bioprotective full-body space suit, typically blue."
bubble stretcher
"Portable biocontainment pod used for transportation of a hot patient."
chains of transmission
"Chains of infection, which typically branch through a population."
"In Greek mythology, a monster with the head of a lion, the body of a goat, and the tail of a dragon. Also a virus made in the laboratory by the mixing (recombination) of genetic material from other viruses. Normally done for peaceful purposes; has obvious military applicatons."
"Refers to a rash where the spots are so numerous that they run together."
"A recombinant virus made in the laboratory."
crash and bleed out
"(Military slang.) To die of shock, with profuse hemorrhages from the orifices of the body."
"Relating to the skin."
"To spread around the body."
emerging infectious diseases
includes newly identified diseases caused by a previously known organism; newly identified diseases caused by a previously unknown organism; the recognition of a new organism; a familiar organism whose geographic range has extended, whose host has changed, whose incidence has increased, or one that has changed to become more virulent or antibiotic resistant." (F.R. Lashley, Chapt. 3
emerging viruses
"Emerging viruses (or, more generally, emerging diseases) are those that have recently increased their incidence and appear likely to continue increasing. In less formal terms, they are viruses that have newly appeared in the human population or are rapidly expanding their range, with a corresponding increase in cases of disease."
"A disease regularly present in an area."
endemic disease
"one that is consistently present in a population or geographic location at a certain level"
"disease of animals that is consistently present in a certain animal population or locale"
"Usually, a rapid upsurge in cases of diseae in an area."
epidemic disease
"one that occurs suddenly in numbers in excess of what is usually expected"
"The science and art of tracing the origin and spread of diseases in populations with the goal of controlling or stopping them."
"an epidemic in an animal population"
"1. the science and study of the causes of disease and their mode of operation. Cf. pathogenesis."
extrinsic incubation period
"The period of time between infection of a biological vector and acquisition by the vector of the ability to transmit the agent to another susceptible vertebrate host."
genetic engineering
"The science and art of inserting genes into or removing them from the DNA of an organism, changing the organism's inherited characteristics as a life-form."
gray area; gray zone
"Intermediate area or room between a hot zone and the normal world. A place where the two worlds meet."
"Vomiting blood."
"Passing blood in the urine."
"organism on or within which microorganisms live"
"Virulent; infective; lethal."
hot agent
"A lethal biological weapon or naturally lethal infective organism."
hot suite
"A group of Biosafety Level 4 laboratory rooms."
hot zone; hot area; hot side
"Area that contains lethal, infectious organisms."
"a person with a functional immune system"
"a person whose immune system does not function properly"
"measure of frequency with which a new case of a specific condition or disease occurs during a specified time period"
incubation period
"time from exposure to appearance of disease"
index case
"the earliest recognized case of a disease"
infective dose
"that amount of pathogenic microorganisms that will cause infection in susceptible subjects. Abbreviated ID."
intrinsic incubation period
"The period of time between infection of the vertebrate host and the appearance of clinical signs."
live attentuated vaccine
intrinsic incubation period
"Feeling of being generally unwell and lacking energy."
"the display or disclosure of characteristic signs or symptoms of an illness [L. manifestus, caught in the act]"
"microscopic living organisms such as bacteria, protozoa, and fungi"
"the ratio of sick to well in a community." [think of it as the ease at which a disease works through a population]
"a fatal outcome."
"a fatal outcome."
"An estimate of the number of secondary cases that will be caused by one infectious case. Known technically as R-zero."
"Muschle aches and pains."
"The localized death of cells caused by, for example, interruption of the blood supply (and oxygen) to those cells."
nosocomial infection
"one that develops and is recognized in patients and employees in a health care institution"
"(Military slang.) In biology, an attempt to render a place sterile."
"occurrence of an unusually large number of cases of disease in a short period of time"
"An infection that spreads around the world affecting much of the population."
"a microorganism causing disease"
"The process by which a microbe produces disease."
"ability of an infectious agent to produce disease in a susceptible host"
pathogenicity island
"A DNA element integrated into the chromosome of a pathogenic bacterium which carries genes whose products are required for pathogenicity and which shows evidence of carrying, at least originally, genes for its own integration." Note: horizontal gene transfer implied
plaque picking
"Method of using a pipette to suck cells infected with a virus out of a well plate. Technique for purifying a strain of engineered virus."
"number or proportion of persons in a given time period with a specific condition or disease"
"An infectious agent made from protein."
"The person in charge of an autopsy, who does the dissection."
"the return of a disease or condition thought to be in remission"
reservoir for infection
"organism (such as humans, animal, plant, or inanimate material-often called fomite) in which a microbial agent normally lives and multiplies""organism (such as humans, animal, plant, or inanimate material-often called fomite) in which a microbial agent normally lives and multiplies"
ring vaccination
"Prophylactic technique of vaccinating every susceptible person within a ring around an outbreak."
sentinel animal
"Susceptible animal used as an alarm for the presence of a hot agent, since no instrument can detect a hot agent. Used as a canary is in a coal mine."
"The body's reaction to viruses or bacteria in the blood."
"1. a group of bacteria containing a common antigen, used in the classification of certain genera of bacteria."
"a subdivision of a species or subspecies distinguishable from other strains therein on the basis of antigenic character. SYN serotype."
"(Military slang.) The Biosafety Level 4 containment hospital at USAMRIID."
source of infection
"organism or inanimate object or substance from which a microbial agent passes to a host"
"Unequivocal, total destruction of all living organisms. Extremely difficult to achieve in practice, and almost impossible to verify afterward."
strategic weapon
"A weapon capable of destroying an army or a city or a nation."
"(Military slang.) The Biosafety Level 4 morgue at USAMRIID."
"A collection of a number of features associated with a disease."
trans-species jump
"The process whereby a virus changes types of hosts, moving from one species to another."
"A compound or virus that, when introduced into the body, provokes immunity to a disease."
"a living organism, usually an arthropod, that can transfer a microbe from one host to another"
"the presence of virus in the bloodstream."
viral traffic
"transfer of viruses to new host populations"
"Virus particle."
"degree of pathogenicity"
virulence factor
"Property of molecules produced by microbes to cause disease."
"The smallest form of life, a parasite that can replicate only inside cells, using the cell's machinery. Viruses are small particles made of proteins, with a core containing DNA or RNA."
well plate
"A plastic plate divided into cups or wells, where viruses are grown inside living cells; essential tool for virus engineering."
zoonoses [zoonotic]
"animal diseases transmitted from animals to humans; their ongoing reservoir is in nonhuman animals, and arthropods are usually involved in their transmission"
"The Biological Weapons and Toxin Convention, an international treaty, signed by more than one hundred and forty nations, which forbids the development, possession, and use of offensive biological weapons. Signed by the United States in 1972."
"A once-secret Soviet biotechnology organization formerly funded largely by the Soviet Ministry of Defense, and devoted largely but not entirely to the research, development, and production of biological weapons."
"The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in Atlanta"
"Epidemic Intelligence Service (E.I.S.). Part of the Centers for Disease Control [and Prevention] dedicated to investigating outbreaks of disease."
"The Hazardous Materials Response Unit of the FBI. A rapid-response team for incidents of chemical or biological terrorism; stationed at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia."
"Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Shorthand for resistance to every penicillin and cephalosporin available."
"United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, at Fort Detrick, Maryland. Also known as the Institute of Rid."
[World Health Organization] "International body associated with the United Nations; headquartered in Geneva."

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