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Ebola Virus explained

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Pandemic Preparedness

In 2009, the H1N1 "swine flu" pandemic struck, infecting millions and killing more than 18,000 worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. Though less severe than initially feared, the pandemic highlighted the potential threat of deadly viruses emerging from animals into humans, and the importance of quick and effective public health intervention.

In a globalized world, the probability of a severe pandemic striking are high, according to Lauren Ancel Meyers, an expert in infectious disease epidemiology at The University of Texas at Austin. A biologist by training, Meyers applies mathematical models and computer programs to understand, analyze and predict the transmission of diseases based on a large number of factors.

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