History Main / SyntheticPlague

20th Jan '16 9:20:05 AM HighCrate
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* The ''Literature/{{Tunnels}}'' series has Dominion, a strain of influenza genetically engineered by the Styx into a super-plague that will kill everyone on the planet's surface, allowing those living BeneathTheEarth to rise up and take their place. * The descolada in OrsonScottCard's ''[[EndersGame Speaker For The Dead]]'' and ''[[EndersGame Xenocide]]'' is an artificially-created supervirus that systematically dismantles and reassembles the DNA of its host. Interesting in that while it's fatal--and nastily so--to Earth life, it is absolutely vital to the ecosystem of Lusitania, necessitating an approach to the disease that ''doesn't'' eradicate the pathogen entirely. [[spoiler: In ''Children of the Mind'', it's discovered that its deadliness is only a side effect; its true purpose is to terraform alien worlds to be more hospitable to its creators.]]
5th Jan '16 10:25:46 AM TheGoodFriar
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** Played straight in "Planet of the Daleks," when the Daleks decide to use this to rid the planet they are enslaving of Thal intruders.
30th Dec '15 7:59:14 PM jormis29
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* In ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' novel ''Death Masks'', creating a magical plague like this is the objective of Nicodemus, using the magical power of [[PublicDomainArtifact the Shroud of Turin]]. Nicodemus isn't doing it for any reason beyond [[ForTheEvulz to cause chaos and death]], which he views as its own end.
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* In ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' novel ''Death Masks'', creating a magical plague like this is the objective of Nicodemus, using the magical power of [[PublicDomainArtifact the Shroud of Turin]].ShroudOfTurin. Nicodemus isn't doing it for any reason beyond [[ForTheEvulz to cause chaos and death]], which he views as its own end.
21st Dec '15 10:38:04 PM Vios
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* In ''Literature/TheEmpressGame'', the Sakien Empire created a [[{{Nanomachines}} nanotech virus]] as a bio-weapon, but it got loose and is doing a lot of damage. This caused the Empire to invade the planet of Ordoch, which had refused to provide a cure on the grounds that the technology involved could have created an even worse weapon, and the Empire had already demonstrated itself unfit to be trusted with that kind of thing. However, the Empire still hasn't managed to compel Ordoch to produce a cure, and can't hold the planet in the long run.
17th Dec '15 9:21:11 AM DarkStarling
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* HIV is often suspected to be one of these; seen under microscope, the virus is an incredibly layered and complex virus, far more than other known viruses. It also has a very low incubation time which would be important for an artificial virus to enhance its spread potential and, even today, no one can be absolutely sure where it originally came from. Naturally, thanks to these facts, conspiracies run rampant.
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* HIV is often falsely suspected to be one of these; seen under microscope, the virus is an incredibly layered and complex virus, far more than other known viruses. virus. It also has a very low incubation time time, which would be important for an artificial virus to enhance its spread potential and, even today, no one can be absolutely sure where potential. And, while it was probably originally came from.contracted by blood contact with apes being harvested for food, actually confirming this beyond a doubt is problematic. Naturally, thanks to these facts, conspiracies run rampant.
17th Dec '15 6:32:03 AM DarkStarling
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* In ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'', of all places, Sauron employed synthetic plagues at various points in the backstory to weaken his enemies before more traditional conquest.
27th Nov '15 8:39:45 PM Doug86
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* The blood plague from ''TwentiethCenturyBoys'' is one of these, as it is continuously strengthened throughout the series to cause ever greater devastation.
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* The blood plague from ''TwentiethCenturyBoys'' ''Manga/TwentiethCenturyBoys'' is one of these, as it is continuously strengthened throughout the series to cause ever greater devastation.

--> ''ďItís a killer virus that is spread through the air. It enters the bloodstream through the respiratory organs and the skin. On top of that, it can break down oil content. Not only can it kill living things, it can also eat holes in respiratory masks and ducts used for defending against biological weapons. Once itís released, it canít be dealt with using ordinary methods...... No effective vaccine for the bacterial wall has been created. It is even highly resistant to heat treatment. There was a report that it can be destroyed with extreme concentrations of ozone, but... you know what would happen to them if it were to be used.Ē''
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--> ''ďItís ''"It's a killer virus that is spread through the air. It enters the bloodstream through the respiratory organs and the skin. On top of that, it can break down oil content. Not only can it kill living things, it can also eat holes in respiratory masks and ducts used for defending against biological weapons. Once itís it's released, it canít can't be dealt with using ordinary methods...... No effective vaccine for the bacterial wall has been created. It is even highly resistant to heat treatment. There was a report that it can be destroyed with extreme concentrations of ozone, but... you know what would happen to them if it were to be used.Ē''"''

* ''TheStand'': The "super flu" which kills 99 percent of the world population nearly overnight was the result of military weapons experiments in the United States, and was released when a lab accident caused it to be spread throughout the military base it was being stored. Later in the book, the demonic Randall Flagg reveals that other man-made viruses such as ''[[ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill super Ebola]]'' are in the works to kill the remaining members of the "good" side of humanity.
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* ''TheStand'': ''Literature/TheStand'': The "super flu" which kills 99 percent of the world population nearly overnight was the result of military weapons experiments in the United States, and was released when a lab accident caused it to be spread throughout the military base it was being stored. Later in the book, the demonic Randall Flagg reveals that other man-made viruses such as ''[[ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill super Ebola]]'' are in the works to kill the remaining members of the "good" side of humanity.

* In the ''StarWars'' ''XWingSeries'', the big plan of the Empire is as horrible as it is brilliant. Knowing they are at a strategic disadvantage and unable to the hold the Capital World Coruscant against the inevitable massed invasion by the Alliance, they develop the Krytos virus, a blend of several of the galaxy's most lethal and infectous diseases. The main requirements were that it be 100% lethal, harmless to humans and Bothans, contagious for a long time before symptoms manifest, and as horribly painful as possible...and that it be easily curable with bacta, an expensive medicine normally used to treat combat injuries. This killed vast numbers of people, massively limited the supply of bacta available to the Alliance and drove it to nigh-bankruptcy (all the more so because the Empire almost-simultaenously took control of the only planet that could produce bacta), and bred resentment and distrust of humans among the alien members of the Alliance (which was further fomented by the Bothans, a [[PlanetOfHats species]] of [[SleazyPolitician Sleazy Politicians]]).
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* In the ''StarWars'' ''XWingSeries'', ''ComicBook/XWingSeries'', the big plan of the Empire is as horrible as it is brilliant. Knowing they are at a strategic disadvantage and unable to the hold the Capital World Coruscant against the inevitable massed invasion by the Alliance, they develop the Krytos virus, a blend of several of the galaxy's most lethal and infectous diseases. The main requirements were that it be 100% lethal, harmless to humans and Bothans, contagious for a long time before symptoms manifest, and as horribly painful as possible...and that it be easily curable with bacta, an expensive medicine normally used to treat combat injuries. This killed vast numbers of people, massively limited the supply of bacta available to the Alliance and drove it to nigh-bankruptcy (all the more so because the Empire almost-simultaenously took control of the only planet that could produce bacta), and bred resentment and distrust of humans among the alien members of the Alliance (which was further fomented by the Bothans, a [[PlanetOfHats species]] of [[SleazyPolitician Sleazy Politicians]]).

* ''StarTrekNewFrontier'' has the Redeemer virus, a plague engineered by the Redeemers and carried in their High Priests' blood, so that any non-natural death wipes out everything on the planet he died on within a few days. Naturally, said High Priests are stationed on newly "redeemed" planets, and occasionally (as in ''Dark Allies'') used as a weapon of influence. * In the ''Double Helix'' series set in the ''Franchise/StarTrek'' universe (primarily during the [[StarTrekTheNextGeneration NextGen]] era), a shadowy malefactor sponsoring medical research appears to be purposely infecting different planets in order to test out the most efficient way to send out viruses to kill off as many Federation citizens as possible.
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* ''StarTrekNewFrontier'' ''Literature/StarTrekNewFrontier'' has the Redeemer virus, a plague engineered by the Redeemers and carried in their High Priests' blood, so that any non-natural death wipes out everything on the planet he died on within a few days. Naturally, said High Priests are stationed on newly "redeemed" planets, and occasionally (as in ''Dark Allies'') used as a weapon of influence. * In the ''Double Helix'' series set in the ''Franchise/StarTrek'' universe (primarily during the [[StarTrekTheNextGeneration [[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration NextGen]] era), a shadowy malefactor sponsoring medical research appears to be purposely infecting different planets in order to test out the most efficient way to send out viruses to kill off as many Federation citizens as possible.

* In SergeyLukyanenko's ''TheStarsAreColdToys'', the [[HumanAliens Geometers]] are masters of genetic engineering. Their current social structure is a direct result of them employing a SyntheticPlague to wipe out another sentient race on their homeworld that was attacking them. It is also discovered that [[spoiler:the plague that devastated the Geometer population at some point in the past was designed by the same scientist who later developed their version of penicillin to fight it at the request of the Mentors who wanted to restructure the society]]. Pyotr realizes that, if the Conclave goes to war with the Geometers, they will probably end up destroying their homeworld, but the surviving Geometers will continue to conduct hit-and-run attacks against Conclave worlds, releasing deadly plagues where they can.
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* In SergeyLukyanenko's ''TheStarsAreColdToys'', ''Literature/TheStarsAreColdToys'', the [[HumanAliens Geometers]] are masters of genetic engineering. Their current social structure is a direct result of them employing a SyntheticPlague to wipe out another sentient race on their homeworld that was attacking them. It is also discovered that [[spoiler:the plague that devastated the Geometer population at some point in the past was designed by the same scientist who later developed their version of penicillin to fight it at the request of the Mentors who wanted to restructure the society]]. Pyotr realizes that, if the Conclave goes to war with the Geometers, they will probably end up destroying their homeworld, but the surviving Geometers will continue to conduct hit-and-run attacks against Conclave worlds, releasing deadly plagues where they can.

* [[spoiler:Inverted]] in the Series/DoctorWho episodes "The Empty Child" and "The Doctor Dances". London has been infected by a virus that turns humans into [[ZombieApocalypse gas mask wearing]] [[OurZombiesAreDifferent zombie creatures]]. As it turns out, it's not a plague at all, but in fact [[spoiler: a cloud of nanogenes that are actually supposed to heal the ill and wounded. But since the nanogenes in question are alien and have never seen humans before, they just turn all the humans they encounter into what they think humans are supposed to look like: a dead boy wearing a gas mask, the first 'human' they've encountered. They end up fixing it by having the nanogenes infect the mother of the dead boy: by recognizing her as the parent, they're able to correct themselves and cure the zombies.]]
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* [[spoiler:Inverted]] in the Series/DoctorWho ''Series/DoctorWho'' episodes "The Empty Child" and "The Doctor Dances". London has been infected by a virus that turns humans into [[ZombieApocalypse gas mask wearing]] [[OurZombiesAreDifferent zombie creatures]]. As it turns out, it's not a plague at all, but in fact [[spoiler: a cloud of nanogenes that are actually supposed to heal the ill and wounded. But since the nanogenes in question are alien and have never seen humans before, they just turn all the humans they encounter into what they think humans are supposed to look like: a dead boy wearing a gas mask, the first 'human' they've encountered. They end up fixing it by having the nanogenes infect the mother of the dead boy: by recognizing her as the parent, they're able to correct themselves and cure the zombies.]]

* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer40000}}'': One form of the world-killing Exterminatus uses a virus that breaks down all living tissue, reducing the biosphere to a mass of extremely flammable matter.
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* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer40000}}'': ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'': One form of the world-killing Exterminatus uses a virus that breaks down all living tissue, reducing the biosphere to a mass of extremely flammable matter.

* ''{{Ever17}}'': The accident in the underwater amusement park is caused by [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Leiblich Pharmeceuticals]] attempting to cover up the fact that a very deadly virus they manufactured, Tief Blau, had been released within the park.
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* ''{{Ever17}}'': ''VisualNovel/{{Ever17}}'': The accident in the underwater amusement park is caused by [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Leiblich Pharmeceuticals]] attempting to cover up the fact that a very deadly virus they manufactured, Tief Blau, had been released within the park.

* Several in ''SwordOfTheStars'' can be deployed by ships with "biowar" modules. Most do damage to planetary populations without destroying infrastructure or terraforming (unlike the [[DeathFromAbove other]] [[ColonyDrop options]]) but vaccines against them are easily researched.
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* Several in ''SwordOfTheStars'' ''VideoGame/SwordOfTheStars'' can be deployed by ships with "biowar" modules. Most do damage to planetary populations without destroying infrastructure or terraforming (unlike the [[DeathFromAbove other]] [[ColonyDrop options]]) but vaccines against them are easily researched.

* The gene plagues you can use to cull the population with in ''FateOfTheWorld'' are this.
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* The gene plagues you can use to cull the population with in ''FateOfTheWorld'' ''VideoGame/FateOfTheWorld'' are this.
22nd Sep '15 1:37:28 AM DarkSoldier
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* In the ''TabletopGame/{{Ravenloft}}'' campaign, a common health problem among citizens of Valachan is white fever; while rarely lethal (fatalities occur now and then) symptoms include weakness, pale skin, chills, night terrors, and sudden loss of weight. In truth, this is not a disease at all. The darklord of Valachan and most of his servants are vampires, and white fever is something they invented to explain the weakness that befalls victims who they feed on, but don't kill. (Which is most of them, actually; they rarely have a need to create more vampires.)
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* In the ''TabletopGame/{{Ravenloft}}'' campaign, a common health problem among citizens of Valachan is white fever; while rarely lethal (fatalities occur now and then) symptoms include weakness, pale skin, chills, night terrors, and sudden loss of weight. In truth, this is not a disease at all. The darklord of Valachan and most of his servants are vampires, and white fever is something they invented to explain the weakness that befalls victims who they feed on, but don't kill. (Which kill (which is most of them, actually; they rarely have a need to create more vampires.)vampires). * In ''TabletopGame/{{Shadowrun}}'', Ares engineered Strain III Flourescing Astral Bacteria to fight the insect spirit infestation of Chicago. Strains I and II merely glow in the presence of mana and dual-natured creatures, while [=FAB3=] actively seeks out and consumes mana. Like all bioweapons, it went after more than just its intended target and devastated the ghouls of Cabrini Green and active mages. Pockets of [=FAB3=] are scattered throughout Chicago, waiting for a nice juicy mage, spirit, or paracritter to walk by and announce its presence to them.
7th Sep '15 11:32:34 AM nombretomado
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** During the ''NewJediOrder'' series , the war against the Yuuzhan Vong goes badly enough that a synthetic plague called "Alpha Red" is created, which specifically targets the Vong and their OrganicTechnology, killing them within days. It is deemed unethical, and condemned by the heroes, but still gets released here and there by certain elements in the Alliance.
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** During the ''NewJediOrder'' ''Literature/NewJediOrder'' series , the war against the Yuuzhan Vong goes badly enough that a synthetic plague called "Alpha Red" is created, which specifically targets the Vong and their OrganicTechnology, killing them within days. It is deemed unethical, and condemned by the heroes, but still gets released here and there by certain elements in the Alliance.
26th Aug '15 3:15:52 PM ClaryD
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** Note that there are far fewer candidates in Real Life then in fiction. Ebola outbreaks and other quick lethal diseases for example "burn out" because people get sick too quickly to spread it around very much. In a pandemic its speculated that after people start locking themselves at home the transmission would stop from quarantine. Slower diseases conversely are more survivable or treatable. There are still dangerous scenarios, but not world ending ones.
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** Note that there are far fewer candidates in Real Life then in fiction. Ebola outbreaks and other quick lethal diseases for example "burn out" because people get sick die too quickly to spread it around very much. In a pandemic its speculated that after people start locking themselves at home the transmission would stop from quarantine. Slower diseases conversely are more survivable or treatable. There are still dangerous scenarios, but not world ending ones.
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