Ebola: An Evolving Story (World Scientific, 2015)


Download a sample chapter (Chapter 1: Origins of the Epidemic) from the Publisher’s website.




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NewCover1_5 inches high 300 DPIExcerpts from Ebola: An Evolving Story:

“I had grave concerns given Dr. Frieden’s  testimony, that Ebola 2014 had already evolved, or was evolving, away from the available molecular diagnostic assays, and that false negatives could result. False negatives could cause people to let down their guard, leading to transmissions.”

“Consider the case of Dr. Martin Salia from Sierra Leone (d. 2014). Upon hearing that his test was negative for Ebola, his colleagues embraced him. Unfortunately, the test was negative within the 21 day watch period. The testing protocol failed this doctor, and his colleagues, because it was not sensitive enough, and was not able to detect the virus in an asymptomatic infected person.”

“Even as I was writing this book, events seemed to provide data that contradicted public statements, and increased my suspicions that we were medically, scientifically, and politically off track.”

“A study in ‘Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology’ in 2009… supports the concern that people will not adhere to self-quarantine conditions… Twenty-seven percent of people in the study violated their self-monitored quarantine.”

“Her name was Katiada. She lived in Port Loko, Sierra Leone. Her doctors, including Dr. Martin Deahl, are already balancing, for patients not enrolled in clinical trials, the needs for medical care, palliative care, and their own humanity. The disease is devastating families and entire villages.”

“That day was the day I decided to enter into a relationship with ebolavirus.”

“Available data seem to indicate that more people are vomiting, and fewer people are experiencing abdominal pain and bleeding with this Ebola from Guinea (2014) than from the Ebola in Zaire (2012).”

“Truth in science matters, and even if it is an unfortunate or uncomfortable truth, it must be told.”

“Cultural and institutional amnesia are certain to recur as our society becomes more reliant upon and trusting in technology, and we forget to respect the awesome power of biology and Nature.”

“It is in evolutionary biology that we find the correct, albeit imperfect, set of lenses through which to view emerging infectious, and other, diseases.”

“Our priorities for death, pain and suffering should not be parochial. We are all members of the same human family.”

“I have never been afraid to speak the truth to authority. I have suffered the consequences. Whether this trait has provided a net benefit or cost to me remains to be seen.”

“But there are mutations, plenty of them, and in many ways, despite reassurances, we do not really know this 2014 strain as well as might be hoped. Instead, there is ample evidence that there is something different with this strain of Ebolavirus from Guinea.”

“Evolution is Real.”Evolution_is_Real

“A study in ‘Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology’ in 2009… supports the concern that people will not adhere to self-quarantine conditions… Twenty-seven percent of people in the study violated their self-monitored quarantine.”

“I found myself confused. For a few months, when both Ebola and fear circulated on US soil, there was a great deal of conflicting information.”

“Lest anyone suggest that this perspective is fear mongering, let us examine what this would mean in terms of other diseases with similar levels of communicability.”

“If you know of the suffering in Africa, you know there is never enough raw emotion. But this project demanded hard logic.”

NewCover1_5 inches high 300 DPI“It’s funny how conservative politicians are, all of sudden, so concerned about evolution.”

“This is a book about humanity’s intrinsic capacity to adapt in the face of crisis, examined from all perspectives: biological, psychological, sociological, and political. It is a condensation of everything I’ve learned about what we know, and what we do not know, about the strain of the ebolavirus behind the 2014 outbreak. In the broadest sense, it is a call for a new era in progressive science. It is also a call for institutional reform, and an appeal for a broader appreciation of the importance of using what we have, stating clearly the limits of our knowledge, for the consistent use of logic and self-examined thinking in the face of a crisis, and in our everyday lives. It provides a framework, I hope, for necessary, open, in-depth discussions about the science of infectious diseases, like ebolavirus diseases, and the effects that the practices of society and our institutions have on our ability to adapt to the challenges that face us.”

 Other Book by Dr. Lyons-Weiler

Cures vs. Profits: Successes in Translational Research (World Scientific) Due out in May (2016).

Genetic and Environmental Causes of Autism. Published by Skyhorse. Due out sometime in 2016.

Last updated:2/29/2016