Chapter 9

Viral Outbreaks and Blood Clots

9.1 Background

The setting is a crowded schoolroom in winter where one child after another comes down with a rash and fever, a case of measles. From time to time, epidemics of childhood diseases such as measles arise in cities around the country, most recently during the late 1980s. Susceptible individuals fall victim to a contagious disease when they encounter others who are already infected. There is a whole class of problems in which two or more species interact that can be formulated mathematically in quite similar ways. Grim warfare, territorial disputes, the hide-and-seek behavior of predators and their victims, and even chemical reactions are all manifestations of species that affect each other ...

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