Journalist Richard Preston is the author of the best seller The Hot Zone, about the ebola virus. His new book, The Demon in the Freezer, is about the smallpox virus and the scientists at the CDC who are working with live smallpox in order to develop a drug that could fight it — should the virus be used in biological warfare. The smallpox virus was eradicated from humans in 1979. Now it can be found — officially — in two high-security freezers: one at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, and at Vector Institute in Siberia.
Writer Richard Preston talks with Barbara Bogaev about the emerging threat of biological weapons. In this week's The New Yorker magazine, Preston writes about the former Soviet Union's research into biological weapons. His new novel "Cobra" (Random House) explores the use of bio-weapons in a civilian setting. Preston also wrote the international bestseller "The Hot Zone." (Interview by Barbara Bogaev)
In 1989, there was a small outbreak of an extremely contagious virus, the Ebola virus, in a lab in Reston, Virginia. The Army was brought in to stop the spread of the disease. The disease causes its victims to bleed to death. Richard Preston has written a new book about the incident, called "The Hot Zone."