The Viilt-ah Plague virus was isolated and identified by Telian scientists over 57 years ago, following an ill-fated expedition near the Lanabb Nebula , in the Shiss Sector. The entire crew of the Jaaline-veh Cruiser, the Taalan'a, perished from exposure to this space borne organism. This event is known in popular Telian culture as the Taalan'a Incident. In a bid to prevent the spread of this terrible disease, the captain of the ship plotted a course into the very heart of Shiss, in the hopes of eradicating the ship and any infectious material but unfortunately, never managed to activate the new programming. Since a quarantine had previously been set, the ship was detained by other ships from the TSP when it failed to respond to numerous communication attempts. It was eventually towed to a remote part of the Shiss System, so as to be studied in relative safety. After building a containment enclosure around the docked ship, Telian scientists boarded the ship remotely, so as to capture samples.
The virus is unique in its ability to reconfigure its external shell so as to resemble numerous metallic alloys during exploratory scans. It has been determined that this ability is triggered by the specific wavelengths of many scanning devices and is probably an adaptation designed to make it even more virulent. The virus targets all currently known Telian life forms, both vegetable and animal. It disrupts cellular activity by changing cell wall permeability, leading to death by cellular decay. The onset is very rapid, with exposure leading to death within a period of 24-28 hours. During this time and up to many years after, the virus can move to a dormant state, becoming essentially undetectable until reanimated by exploratory scans. The contagion rate (as determined in laboratory testing) approaches 100%. It would also appear that death by cellular decay is the result of exposure in almost 100% of tested life forms.