Some Interesting Bacteria and Facts About Them

This first group of bacteria that you see are a group of anthrax bacilli in a sputum sample.

Bacillus anthracis pneumonia is 100% fatal in a period of time which is usually measurable in hours due to massive cardiopulmonary shock and cardiovascular collapse. This type of bacteria has been a favorite of Apocalyptic writers for years.

The next bacteria type isCorynebacterium

diphtheriae which is seen here in some of its typical palasaides arrangement in a pharyngeal smear. At one time Diphtheria, was considered to be one of the most dreaded diseases world wide, but excellent vaccines have caused it to be presently somewhat limited in its areas of endemicity

Diphtheria is still a problem in some of the countries of the former Soviet Union where harsh conditions have made it difficult to obtain adequate supplies of vaccine.

This organism is probably known to all of you who have ever seen a tabloid headline while

standing in a supermarket checkout lineThis is Streptococcus pyogenes

which is the organism responsible for Strep Throat and Rheumatic Fever and Impetigo and The !FLESH EATING BACTERIA! I’m sure most of you weren’t taken in by all of the

hype and you know that this organism is nothing new and that the Flesh -Eating phenomenon is a slightly more virulent disorder due to the presence of the same sorts of toxins responsible for Impetigo. It has been with us for centuries and looks like it will continue to be, but it is not a major concern for the entire human race as some of the tabloids might have you believe.

Have you ever had pneumonia? It’s an unpleasant experience and here is the culprit

Do you see the pairs of circular bacteria in this sputum sample? Do you notice that each is surrounded by a clear zone? That zone is a capsule and it’s this which makes Streptococcus pneumoniae such a successful pathogen. This capsule resists phagocytosis and intracellular destruction by the monocytes in this sample.

If you would like to understand more about Monocytes you should consider taking Mr. Hemenway’s Anatomy class (Bio 133) or Dr. Krumhardts combined Anatomy/ Physiology (Bio 154) or even my Health Science Microbiology (Bio 132) classes.

Here at DMACC your education is our business and your satisfaction is our goal.

Here is another Streptococcus in a Blood smear. It is possible that this one may be responsible for Rheumatic Fever, Glomerulonephritis or Rheumatoid Arthritis. Sometimes organisms like this in the blood are only temporary after brushing your teeth. Do you have any idea why? If you had taken Bio 132, you would know the answer to this and many other interesting questions.

You may find this one appetizing!. A gram of the toxin from this organism is a lethal dose for 200,000 mice. A cup of this toxin in pure form would be capable of depopulating the entire Earth. This organism is Clostridium botulinum , the organism responsible for Botulism. The toxin, called botulin works like nerve gas causing respiratory failure, paralysis and death in as little as 4 hours. Clostridium tetanai, the agent responsible for Tetanus has a similar appearance in culture. Its toxin called Tetanospasmin is also a nerve toxin though it acts through a different mechanism.

Botulism has been associated with improperly canned foods, especially green beans and others with low natural acidity. Think about this the next time you’re about to chow down on a three bean salad!

Here are some gram positive Enterococci from a urine sample. The reason why these are of interest, is because the genus Enterococcus has been shown to have some members which are Vancomycin resistant and Vancomycin is considered to be the ULTIMATE ANTIBIOTIC, at least at present. Therefore, anything which shows resistance to Vancomycin, may potentially be resistant to all common antibiotics. If you had taken Health Science Microbiology at DMACC, you’d already know that!. Better check us out!

Also, I have a page with some interesting information about pathogenic fungi. Click HERE for that link

This has been a tour of the microbial world and presented you with only the briefest of glimpses of a fascinating field which encompasses almost every aspect of modern life. I would recommend you take this search farther, if you have the time, so that you can see how Microbiology affects you Once you check out some of these other cool web sites, you’ll know that The DMACC Urban Campus Biology Department has the information that you’re looking for See you in cyberspace

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