Yehor Lisnyi/Alamy Stock Vector
2018 should be a big year for us disease buffs. It is the 100th anniversary of the 1918 flu epidemic, perhaps humanity’s worst ever disease disaster. And it might be the year we send another disease to join smallpox in the dustbin of history – with luck, maybe even two.
Disease has always ranked with war and famine as humanity’s chief sources of death and misery. But apart from a few things like cancer, many people assume that wealthier countries have pretty much licked disease and famine.
Sadly, a bit more pessimism seems to be in order. No sooner do we beat back a smallpox or a scarlet fever (which staged a comeback in 2017), than another germ emerges from the roiling, global pathogenic gene pool to replace it. What is a disease buff in search of happy holidays to do?
Guinea worm horror
Published at Mon, 01 Jan 2018 17:00:00 +0000