I see a service in bringing information about this subject to the thriller-reading public. We can learn about new discoveries and science in our thriller plots. But in this case of Dan Brown's scenario, why pin a global pandemic on a legitimate organization? Reality is scary enough.
We react to each influenza that visits itself upon the citizens of the world as though we have discovered something new. The only really new things are our surprise and consistent inability to recall all of the lessons from prior visitations.