The Hot Zone

The Hot Zone

A civilian virologist at USAMRIID, Jahrling is one of the first at the Institute to realize that the monkeys at the Reston Primate Quarantine Unit are infected with Ebola. He is an expert on monkey viruses, and specializes in virus defense. Before the Reston incident, Jahrling has scrupulously avoiding Marburg and Ebola because of how deadly they are. Along with Thomas Geisbert, Jahrling puts his life at great risk by unknowingly sniffing a vial that contains Ebola virus, despite his reputation as a careful man. After this exposure, he works tirelessly to study the strain and to decontaminate the monkey house, and he does not become ill.

Peter Jahrling Quotes in The Hot Zone

The The Hot Zone quotes below are all either spoken by Peter Jahrling or refer to Peter Jahrling. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Anchor Books edition of The Hot Zone published in 1999.
Part 2, Chapter 2 Quotes

[Peter Jahrling] had held in his gloved hands virtually every hot agent known, except for Ebola and Marburg. When people asked him why he didn’t work with those viruses, he replied, “I don’t particularly feel like dying.”

Related Characters: Richard Preston (speaker), Peter Jahrling (speaker)
Related Symbols: Spacesuits and Gloves
Page Number: 132
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa

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A freezer can be as hot as hell. When a place is biologically hot, no sensors, no alarms, no instruments can tell the story. All instruments are silent and register nothing.

Related Characters: Richard Preston (speaker), Peter Jahrling (speaker)
Page Number: 136
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Peter Jahrling Character Timeline in The Hot Zone

The timeline below shows where the character Peter Jahrling appears in The Hot Zone. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 2, Chapter 2: Into Level 3
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Globalization Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
...consult USAMRIID about the illness in the monkey house. He contacts a virologist named Peter Jahrling, an expert on monkey viruses, who becomes curious about the mysterious malady. Jahrling has worked... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
The next day, Peter Jahrling receives frozen samples from O53, wrapped in flimsy aluminum foil. The ice around them is... (full context)
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
...Bill Volt the next day, and learns that no monkeys have died overnight. He calls Jahrling, but is told that they won’t know anything for a few more days. A day... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 3: Exposure
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
...to be spilling out of them. The two decide to show the cells to Peter Jahrling. Since he’s only in Level 3, Geisbert removes his scrub suit and takes a shower... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
When he sees the sample, Jahrling asserts that the cells must have been contaminated in some way—an annoying but common occurrence.... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 4: Thanksgiving
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Dan Dalgard, meanwhile, calls Peter Jahrling to find out further information about the virus. Jahrling tells him once again that it... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 5: Medusa
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
...recalls how similar this sample looks to Peter Cardinal’s, and realizes that he and Peter Jahrling may have smelled a hot Level 4 agent. (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 6: The First Angel
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
Tom Geisbert prints out the photos and heads to Peter Jahrling’s office with them. On the way, he passes the chaotic office of Gene Johnson, before... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Globalization Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
Jahrling finds Peters in a meeting, but upon seeing the pictures, the colonel instantly leaves the... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
After speaking to C. J. Peters, Peter Jahrling and Tom Geisbert discuss the fact that they both may have inhaled Marburg virus. They... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
Jahrling asserts that he and Geisbert most likely did not contract the virus, although he decides... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 7: The Second Angel
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
...from the Reston monkeys rather than from outside contamination. He takes his photographs to Peter Jahrling and C. J. Peters, and the three men now must wait for Jahrling to complete... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
As he works on his tests, Peter Jahrling decides that he must notify Dan Dalgard—but at the same time, he must make sure... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
...not to open up any more monkeys, then waits for a phone call from Peter Jahrling. As he does, he wonders whether any of his employees have cut themselves with scalpels... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Globalization Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
As Dan Dalgard waits and worries, Peter Jahrling works in his spacesuit. He plans to combine samples of the virus with the blood... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 8: Chain of Command
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
Unable to believe that the strain is Ebola Zaire, Peter Jahrling performs the test again, but gets the same results. He is positive now that the... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
Peter Jahrling and C. J. Peters visit the office of Colonel David Huxsoll, the commander of USAMRIID,... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 11: Shoot-Out
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
...of Ebola. He also has a longstanding rivalry with Peters. The meeting begins with Peter Jahrling explaining that there is a strain of Ebola infecting the monkeys. Next a nervous Dalgard... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 5: A Bad Day
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Bravery and Teamwork Theme Icon
Peter Jahrling, meanwhile, has been spending all his time in his spacesuit running tests on monkey samples,... (full context)
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
Jahrling carries slides of his own blood serum into his lab and looks at them under... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 6: Decon
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Nineteen days after sniffing a tube of Ebola, Peter Jahrling and Tom Geisbert decide that they are definitely not infected. They are reassured but puzzled... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 7: The Most Dangerous Strain
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
...the Army. The monkey house, meanwhile, stays vacant to this day. Tom Geisbert and Peter Jahrling—who is now the principal scientist at USAMRIID—name the new virus Ebola Reston. In Jahrling’s office,... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 2: Camp
The Power of Nature Theme Icon
Human Error and Fragility Theme Icon
Globalization Theme Icon
Innovation and Curiosity vs. Hubris Theme Icon
...to study elephants. He wore no biohazard gear but never fell ill (and later Peter Jahrling would express an interest in testing his blood). Preston explains Iain Redmond’s theory that thousands... (full context)