This book guides readers through the fascinating world of viruses and makes them enjoy science in an accessible way. Virologist and author Professor Van Wilson imparts knowledge about what viruses are, how they work, and how much they impact life on Earth. Viruses: Intimate Invaders equips the reader with the scientific basics behind virus function and presents the historic milestones of virus research and discovery. Well-known viruses such as HIV or Influenza are tackled alongside novel pathogens like coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Professor Wilson explores where they come from and how they impact our society.
Last but not least the book provides exciting insights into how our immune system reacts to different viruses and how vaccines contribute to conquering pandemics. While scientifically informative, this book makes the field of virology understandable to a lay audience and encourages readers to further thinking. And more importantly, it conveys the wonder, beauty, and mystery of these ubiquitous, microscopic marvels.
This book addresses anyone interested in understanding the principles of virology, viral diseases, or the impact of viruses on human societies.
Van G. Wilson is a Full Professor in the Department of Microbial and Molecular Pathogenesis in the College of Medicine at Texas A&M University Health Science Center since 1999 and also served 12 years as the college's Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies. Van's scientific career focused on viruses of the papovavirus group, including SV40, polyomaviruses, and papillomaviruses with funding from the NIH, the National Science Foundation, the American Cancer Society, and several other agencies. During that period Van published 71 scientific papers, 22 book chapters, 130 abstracts, and has edited 4 scientific books. Van has taught medical and graduate students for over 35 years and has lectured on his science around the world. Through these experiences, he has accumulated a broad, yet detailed, perspective about human-viruses interactions, from the molecular to the societal level. Van believes there are exciting, important, and interesting aspects of viral biology that would be appealing and accessible to a general audience, and therefore he decided to create a book that is both educational and entertaining.