World / Offbeat

Ebola-themed plush toys doing brisk sales

REUTERS

It may be the only time you will find these words in the same sentence: “Ebola” and “Add to Wishlist.”

Giantmicrobes Inc., which makes a line of plush toys based on viruses and other microscopic organisms, has sold out its entire Ebola stock, including the small Ebola doll for $9.95, a Gigantic Ebola doll for $29.95 and an Ebola Petri Dish toy for $14.95, according to the company’s website.

“Since its discovery in 1976, Ebola has become the T. Rex of microbes,” says the Stamford, Connecticut-based maker of the “uniquely contagious toy” on its website, which promotes them as gag gifts that also have educational value.

The toy looks something like half a pretzel.

“You do not want to get Ebola,” warns the website. “A short incubation period of 2 to 21 days presages symptoms which include fever, aches, sore throat, and weakness, followed by diarrhea, stomach pain, vomiting, and both internal and external bleeding. And then, for between 50-90 percent of victims, death.”

Giantmicrobes lists the World Health Organization as one of its largest customers, along with pharmaceutical companies and the American Red Cross.

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