Kuru is a neurological disease endemic to the Papua New Guinea region. It is widely passed among the local tribes and is believed to be the cause of the zombie outbreak in Dead Island. Doctor Robert West needs a non-mutated strain of this disease to work on a cure. Doctor West also believes that people with O Negative blood are insusceptible to the infection. The variant of Kuru found on the island of Banoi that created the infection outbreak is actually a stronger and altered variation of the disease, which the members of the Consortium came to name Pathogen HK.
DITexts.scr Description of Disease
Based on cut content of the "Organization" (a.k.a. Consortium), detailing emails between Wong, Andropov, and Goss
Apparently, a strain of some new and, as yet, unclassified virus is tearing through the highland tribes on the island of Banoi. The infected show symptoms similar to the local affliction Kuru, but the incubation period appears to be hours and days rather than years. The symptoms exhibited are analogous to rabies or mad cow, but much more violent and severe. After the carrier’s death, only the most primitive functions of the brain remain active, turning the victim into a violent animal operating on pure instinct. Whether it’s fear or fury, the victim is compelled to attack those who have yet to contract the infection. The disease is transmitted by blood or bodily fluid, most often during a physical attack. Attached photos show an infected individual in each stage of the illness.
Andropov has requested that some of the infected be captured so this virus can be studied more closely. Trace the source of this virus, prepare a report, and judge the feasibility of weaponizing it. Certain questions need to be answered. For instance, what is the most common mode of transmission? Can this transmission be controlled? What is the speed and rate of infection? What is the average incubation period? How long from first visible symptoms until death? Once the feasibility of its use as a weapon can be determined, profit projections can be ascertained.
The bodies of the patients 1 through 3 exhibit indications of clinical asymptomatic Stage 2 HIV as well as Stage 2 Kuru. As is typical with any transmissible spongiform encephalopathy, the cerebral cortex has been eaten away, permeated with thousands of tiny perforations. Researchers believe that this new disease might be a mutation/combination of Kuru and HIV. There appears to be a small percentage of people, all with the blood type O negative, who are resistant to the effects of this virus. Because of this, researchers believe that it might be possible to create a vaccine. This is essential if the virus is to be weaponized and sold to military organizations. Estimates place the profits for such a biological weapon in the billions.
Virus “HK” has been given priority one. The Consortium has assembled an international team to do research into isolating a stable form of the pathogen.
Virus “HK” has spread much more quickly than originally projected. The breakdown of the social fabric and the loss of assigned agents and researchers have made operations in the field problematic. The mission is clearly threatened. The Australian government has a set of protocols in place in the event of such a massive pandemic. The worst case scenario calls for the nuclear annihilation of the entire island of Banoi. If this worst case scenario unfolds, the Consortium will lose the opportunity to create what could be an extremely profitable biological weapon. Attached photographs document the chaos currently engulfing the island.
An emergency video conference is being held at 2 pm GMT. All members of the executive team are required to attend. Please be prompt. Current plans need to be reassessed. Alternatives will be discussed. The successful creation of a weaponized version of Pathogen HK is currently the Consortium’s highest priority.
Summary of decisions made during the video conference. 1) Impede the actions of the BIDF Colonel authorized to activate the nuclear protocol. Distract him from his primary duty by infecting his wife, a doctor in the prison hospital on Banoi, with Pathogen HK. 2) Activate Charon, the covert operative located in the prison. An expert hacker and high-tech operative, he’s currently serving a life sentence for his terrorist activities. Charon will be tasked with neutralizing the Colonel’s actions as well coordinating efforts towards finding a stable specimen of the pathogen. To do this he will use recruited agents. Possible allies include the head of research lab hidden in the jungle, away from the prying eyes of environmentalists and animal activists. 3) Lure Pathogen HK immune individuals to Banoi to aid Charon in his quest for a stable specimen of the pathogen. Myers will organize an international blood drive designed to locate and lure suitable candidates. Attached photographs of Charon, Colonel Ryder White, and Dr. Emily White.
Charon reports that he has contacted the lead scientist at the research lab located in the jungle and that he has agreed to cooperate. Half his fee should be immediately wired to the previously provided bank account in the Cayman Islands. Dr. West’s photograph is attached.
The international blood drive has led to the discovery of 9 individuals immune to Pathogen HK. Attempts are being made to lure them to Banoi by various means. Charon will use whoever arrives in his search and surveillance of the island. Attached are a few of the welcoming emails.
Charon reports that more than half of the immune individuals lured to Banoi perished as a result of the social chaos caused by the pandemic. Charon has, however, made contact with four immune individuals who have managed to survive. They will be used to help locate and secure a stable sample of the pathogen. Attached photographs of Sam B, Xian Mei, Purna, and Logan Carter.
According to Emily White's research prior to her death, she managed to document symptoms of Kuru from patients at the Prison. From what she observed during an autopsy, it is discovered that virus contained strains of HIV as well as the contraction of spongiform encephalopathy (also known as prion diseases). The effects of the transmissible spongiform encephalopathy include the deterioration of physical and mental capabilities. Side effects include gradual memory-loss (which can be seen in the late stages of Roger Howard's transformation) as well as a sensation of intense and indescribable pain. From what was observed from Emily White during her stages of transformation, the disease eventually causes slurred speech and eventually total loss of verbal communication.
From research of the actual disease, Kuru, as well as spongiform encephalopathy, it is possible that the population outside of the jungle areas (Royal Palms Resort, Moresby, etc.) contracted the new strain of the disease from the consumption of livestock that made their way into the mass populations food supply. Thus, explaining how the infection managed to spread into the resort without detection. As for the native tribes, the disease is widely accepted and transmitted via cannibalism.
Kuru is a real disease that is found among the Fore, a tribe native to Papua New Guinea that is known to practice cannibalism. It is also known as "Laughing Sickness", due to the laughter like, painful spasms it causes in its victims.