The book was used as the basis for a movie of the same name.
Warning: Spoilers follow
Initially, it has infected an US government satellite, which crashes near a village in Arizona, the disease killing all inhabitants but two. An elite scientist team takes the disease into a secret government laboratory in Nevada, known as the Wildfire Complex ('Wildfire'), deep underground to study it. When the disease is about to escape, an automatic mechanism is engaged which will detonate a nuclear weapon in the complex in an attempt to eradicate all traces of the disease before it reaches the surface. Unfortunately, it turns out that the alien disease would thrive on such a large energy source as that of a nuclear weapon.