New Exhibit on Infectious Diseases Opens March 31 at the Koshland Science Museum in Washington , D.C.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The threat of infectious disease can be felt in all corners of the globe, from the rapid spread of HIV/AIDS, to the search for vaccines that can protect against new strains of the flu. Infectious disease is a global burden, affecting policy decisions and personal health choices around the world. On March 31, the MarianKoshlandScienceMuseum will open a new interactive exhibit, Infectious Disease: Evolving Challenges to Human Health. This exhibit provides an in-depth view of the microbes that cause some of the world's most deadly diseases and explores the challenges facing researchers today.

"New threats emerge every day because of microbial evolution, more rapidly changing environments, and the increased movement of people over short and long distances," said Elliott Kieff, chairman of the scientific steering committee that oversaw the creation of the exhibit, and professor of medicine and microbiology and molecular genetics at HarvardUniversity. "Our response to microbes determines the spread of disease."

This major exhibit features interactive displays providing a rarely seen view of our microbial world. Visitors will gain an understanding of how scientists develop tools and strategies to treat diseases. Displays allow visitors to explore the distribution of microbes both in our bodies and around the world, see how vaccines are used to control or eradicate disease, and learn how bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics.

The exhibit will open to the general public on Saturday, March 31, with free admission and hands-on activities from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and a featured discussion from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. with New York Times science reporter Denise Grady.

The MarianKoshlandScienceMuseum is part of the National Academies, a private, nonprofit organization comprised of the NationalAcademy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine, and National Research Council. Located at 6th and E streets, N.W., Washington, D.C., the museum is easily accessible by metro at the Gallery Place/Chinatown and Judiciary Square stops. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, except Tuesdays. For more information, visit http://www.koshland-science.org.

Source: National Academy of Sciences

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