Terrifying-Ebola-outbreak-spreading-fastThe Ebola virus that has killed at least 59 people of the 80 who initially contracted it in Guinea now threatens all of West Africa, as health officials in Liberia try to determine if recent deaths there are connected. Six cases have been reported of which five have already died, including a child, Liberian Health Minister Walter Gwenigale said in a statement, according to Agence France-Presse. There was a suspicion that Ebola had migrated to Canada, with one victim hospitalized this week with a fever and bleeding, but health officials said tests for Ebola were negative. The World Health Organization said the case may be severe malaria. The World Health Organization reports the Ebola virus that causes severe viral hemorrhagic fever, or VHF, can produce outbreaks with a fatality rate of up to 90 percent. The WHO has documented the Ebola virus is transmitted from wild animals to humans, with the capability of spreading through the human population. Fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family are considered to be the natural host of the Ebola virus, and, most alarming, there is no effective medical treatment or preventative vaccine for either animals or human beings. Many Americans first heard about Ebola – including its terrifying symptoms, virulence and communicability – in author Richard Preston’s 1995 No. 1 New York Times bestseller, “The Hot Zone.” The BBC reported Tuesday that Guinea has now banned the sale and consumption of bats to prevent the spread of the disease, according to Rene Lamah, Guinea’s health minister. Lamah explained to the BBC that people who eat the bats often boil them into a spicy pepper soup sold in village stores where people gather to drink alcohol. Other ways of preparing bats to eat include drying them over a fire. More