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Fictional Diseases

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Plague ship 4

Pandemics terrify not only because they may weaken and kill individuals but also because the large numbers weakened and killed, and the fear of contagion, can undermine the social fabric and public order. How could science fiction writers possibly ignore them as subject matter?

Science FictionEdit

MicrobialEdit

AEdit
BEdit
  • Black Oil, a.k.a.Black Cancer, a.k.a. Purity (alien virus living underground in oil deposits) - X-Files universe
  • Blister Fever - Kameron Hurley's novel God's War, p. 86
  • Blueskin plague - Murray Leinster's novel This World is Taboo full text
  • Boneitis - Futurama
CEdit
DEdit
  • Dorian Gray syndrome - Kim Stanley Robinson's novel 2312, p. 361
  • Dragons' Plague - Dragons of Pern
EEdit
  • Ebola B - Johnny Fincham's novel While the God's Sleep
  • Evolve (virus) - Tim Lebbon's novel London's Eye (Toxic City series)
FEdit
  • Fansel Grass Fever (bovine) - Andre Norton's novel Plague Ship
  • Fleischman's Disease - Frederick Pohl and C.M. Kornbluth's novel The Space Merchants
  • Flood - Greg Bear's Cryptum: The Forernner Saga (Halo universe)
  • the Fear - Robert Holdstock's novel Eye Among the Blind
GEdit
HEdit
  • Haden's syndrome - John Scalzi's novel Lock In
  • Hand of God - Jerry Oltion's short story "The Last of Lust in Analog, October 2011
  • Helico Virus - Brian W. Aldiss's Helliconia Trilogy, Helliconia Winter, p. 76
  • Hypersomic Plague (virus) - Spider Robinson's novel Telempath
IEdit
  • Intestinal Bodyguard (genetically engineering organism goes rogue) - Mira Grant's novel Parasite (Parasitology Volume 1)
JEdit
  • Jakarta Pandemic - Steven Konkoly's novel The Jakarta Pandemic
  • Juedenvirus - John C. Wright's novel Count to a Trillion
  • JUVE virus - Margaret Atwood's novel Oryx and Crake
KEdit
LEdit
  • Ledgerton Virus - David Gerrold's short story "How We Saved the Human Race" in his collection With a Finger in My I
  • Lebruachuanarrhea - Zapp Dingbat episode of Futurama. July 11, 2012
  • Leninger's Disease - David Brin's novel Existence , p. 346
MEdit
  • Marburg Red - Ramez Naam's novel Nexus, pp. 75-76
  • Martian Fever - Arthur C. Clarke's novel The Sands of Mars, p. 111
  • Merovian Plague - John Scalzi's novel Redshirts
  • mutAIDS - John Barnes's novel The Sky So Big and Black
NEdit
  • N5S-virus - Nihei Tsutomu's Biomega manga
  • NARVIK (strains A and B) - Helix (Syfy)
  • Newpox - Katy Stauber's novel Revolution World
  • Noakes Syndrome - David Brin's novel Existence, p. 346
OEdit
PEdit
  • Pavirus, a.k.a. D-Pav vurus - Charles E. Gannon's novel Fire With Fire, p. 210.
  • Pestilence of the Jihad - John C. Wright's novel Count to a Trillion, p. 4
  • Phoebe bug - James S.A. Corey's novel Leviathan Awakes
  • plague four - Johnny Fincham's novel While the God's Sleep
  • plague five - Johnny Fincham's novel While the God's Sleep
  • pseudo-polio - M. John Harrison's novel Empty Space: A Haunting, brief reference, p. 187
REdit
SEdit
  • Scarlet Plague - Jack London's novel The Scarlet Plague
  • St. Mary's - V for Vendetta 2006 film
  • Strep Five Virus - Johnny Fincham's novel While the God's Sleep
  • Silent Untreated Disease Syndrome, a.k.a. SUDS - Brian W. Aldiss's Helliconia Trilogy, Helliconia Winter, p.99
TEdit
  • Transcription Divergence Syndrome - Daryl Gregory's novel The Devil's Alphabet
  • Tritonian Hypermalaria - "Dr. John Zoidberg, "M"D*" episode of Futurama August 19, 2011
VEdit
  • Venus Particle - Douglas Preston's novel Tyrannosaur Canyon
  • Venusian flu - Kim Stanley Robinson's novel 2312, p. 203
  • Virus QQ - Larry Niven's novel Protector
WEdit
  • Waterless Flood - Margaret Atwood's novel The Year of the Flood
  • White Disease - Karel Capek's play The White Plague
  • White Plague - Frank Herbert's novel The White Plague
  • White Plague - Dale Pendell's novel The Great Bay: Chronicles of the Collapse
XEdit
  • Xavier's Plague - James Morrow's 1990 novel City of Truth, p. 25
YEdit
ZEdit
  • Zeta-Three (bacteria) - Larry Niven's novel Protector

FungalEdit

  • Gill Blight - James L. Cambias's novel A Darkling Sea, p. 314
  • Tailored Rice Blast - John Barnes's novel The Sky So Big and Black

GeneticEdit

  • Golem (fibrodysplasia variant caused by an intentionally dispersed single point retroviral) - Peter Watts' novel Blindsight, pp. 291-292
  • Gorman's Syndrome (genetic) - David Marusek's novel Mind Over Ship, p. 304
  • Z-Factor Deficiency - Katy Stauber's novel Revolution World

PsychiatricEdit

  • Denver Madness - John Brunner's novel The Sheep look Up, (caused by leaks of dumped military chemical warfare agents), p. 443
  • line-sickness (caused by crowding in queues) - John Hersey's novel My Petition For More Space
  • Rip van Winkle's Disease (depression caused by extreme longevity) - Kim Stanley Robinson's novel Icehenge, pp. 139-140
  • rock-happy - Robert A. Heinlein's novel The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
  • Solitosis - Hallucination Orbit X-Minus radio program
  • space-whirly or whirlies - Andre Norton's novel Plague Ship
  • The Disease - Robert Sheckley's "Carrier" in William F. Nolan's short story collection A Wilderness of Stars
  • Wendigo Psychosis

UncertainEdit

  • Chronic Worry Syndrome - Sealab 2021 animated telelvision series
  • Garfield Syndrome - "Dr. John Zoidberg, "M"D*" episode of Futurama August 19, 2011
  • Gulf Syndrome - Matt Ruff's novel The Mirage, pp, 270-271
  • the Lassitude - Matthew Hughes's novel Black Brillion, Archonate universe
  • Yetiism - "Dr. John Zoidberg, "M"D*" episode of Futurama August 19, 2011

UnnamedEdit

  • Unnamed bird flu mutation in Contagion 2011 film
  • Unnamed combat virus - The Crazies 1973 film
  • Unnamed computer/biological virus described as an "artifact outbreak" - "Lovesick" episode of Warehoue 13 July 25, 2011
  • Unnamed infection in Apollo 18
  • Unnamed virus in Carnosaur 1993 film
  • Unnamed virus that causes premature aging and intellectual deterioration - David Dvorkin's novel Budspy, p. 253
  • Unnamed genetically engineered mutation of rabies - Ben Bova's novel Leviathans of Jupiter, p. 100
  • Unnamed microbe in Twelve Monkeys 1995 film
  • The Diary of Juhzoh Okita, Exobiologist (extraterrestrial microbe accidentally released from the Hayabusa asteroid-sample capsule]
  • Unnamed biological warfare agent that kills men but not women - Marcel Theroux's novel Far North
  • Unnamed wasting disease - Mike Resnick's A Miracle of Rare Resign, p. 229

Non-Science Fiction or Not Quite Science Fiction FictionEdit

  • Andromeda Strain - Michael Crichton's novel The Andromeda Strain
  • Ass Rabies - "Bully For Steve" episode of American Dad televisions series
  • Benghazi Flu - defeated Republican former U.S. Representative from Florida Allen West
  • Back Mumps - First Chang Dynasty episode of Community television series, May 17, 2012.
  • Brain Cloud - Joe and the Volcano 1990 film
  • Brain Pox - Richard Preston's novel The Cobra Event
  • Black Trump Virus - George R. R. Martin's novel Wild Cards
  • Canasyphilaids - High Risk Behavior Brickleberry premiere
  • Chatterton Syndrome - 30 Rock Live TV episode, April 26, 2012
  • Captain Trips (a.k.a. superflu, the rales, Tube Neck, Project Blue and A-Prime) -Stephen King's novel The Stand
  • Emysphilia - prank by John Behan
  • Gastric Flu - "Frozen Yoghurt", episode 2, season 1 of Veep HBO comedy television series
  • Heinsbergen Syndrome - The Royal Tannenbaums 2001 film, Facebook Page for disease
  • Hepatitis E - Episode 308 of New Rules Real Time with Bill Maher February 21, 2014.
  • Hyperactive Libido Syndrome - The People vs. Martin Sugar episode of American Dad, Season 7, Episode 7, December 5, 2010.
  • Hypernarcissosis - "Celebrity Impressionists" episode of Community
  • ill wind (a.k.a. October project; a.k.a. Sera-Flu vaccine) - James Lilliefors's novel Viral
  • Morbid Halitosis - Halitosis Kidz South Park episode, Season 16
  • Morgollons - Internet borne myth
  • Motaba - Outbreak 1995 film
  • NAM37 - The Patriot 1998 film
  • October project (a.k.a. ill wind; a.k.a. Sera-Flu vaccine) - James Lilliefors's novel Viral
  • O.L.D. - 30 Rock Live TV episode, April 26, 2012
  • Plague of Insomnia - Gabriel Garcia Marquez's novel One Hundred Years of Solitude
  • Sera-Flue vaccine (a.k.a. October project; a.k.a. ill wind) - James Lilliefors's novel Viral, p. 217
  • Skittles Pox - Skittles advertisement
  • Streppneuomia - ""Abby's Christmas Spirit episode of crime drama NCIS, December 18, 2013
  • white sickness (epidemic blindness) - José Saramago's novels Blindness and Seeing
  • X-T Virus - Beavis and Butthead Do America 1996 film

Popular ScienceEdit

  • ManeM aeslinger (moon measles) - Influenza fra universet, unlabeled magazine clipping dated 24 June 1960, Box 26, Lederberg Papers, cited in Audra J. Wolfe Germs in Space: Joshua Lederberg, Exobiology, and the Public Imagination, 1958-1964. Isis, vol. 93, no. 2 (Jun., 2002), pp. 183-205
  • Marts Influenza (Mars flu) - Influenza fra universet, unlabeled magazine clipping dated 24 June 1960, Box 26, Lederberg Papers, cited in Audra J. Wolfe Germs in Space: Joshua Lederberg, Exobiology, and the Public Imagination, 1958-1964. Isis, vol. 93, no. 2 (Jun., 2002), pp. 183-205
  • Venus Vorter (Venus warts) - Influenza fra universet, unlabeled magazine clipping dated 24 June 1960, Box 26, Lederberg Papers, cited in Audra J. Wolfe Germs in Space: Joshua Lederberg, Exobiology, and the Public Imagination, 1958-1964. Isis, vol. 93, no. 2 (Jun., 2002), pp. 183-205

OtherEdit

April FoolsEdit

Disease Revealed as False Within the StoryEdit

LinksEdit

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