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Fungal Pathogen: Cryptococcus neoformans

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Choose any one of the fungal pathogens and discuss its appearance, staining reaction, culture characteristics, disease caused, and epidemiology characteristics (where is it common, who is at risk).

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Fungal Pathogen chosen: Cryptococcus neoformans

Cryptococcus neoformans is a fungus that caused the disease Cryptococcosis. It infects humans and animals and affect people who have weakened immune systems. Those who have HIV are more susceptible to the infection. It is usually found in the soil throughout the world. The microscopic airborned fungal spores usually infected people who inhaled them. The fungus spores causes symptoms of the lung infection and spread to other parts of the body. The fungal spores are found in bird droppings or in soil contaminated with ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides an explanation of the fungus Cryptococcus neoformans that causes a devastating disease in immunocompromised people. It is found mostly in bird's droppings and its spores are inhaled by people who eventually developed the fungal disease. It causes fungal meningitis in HIV/AIDS patients. Its symptom includes shortness of breath, cough, and fever.

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What if there was a meningitis outbreak?

The Centers for Disease Control has contacted you and other microbiologists to review a recent increase in the number of meningitis cases in your city. The director of the organization is requesting information in regards to the various types of microorganisms which can cause meningitis. I need help for these topics:

1. I need to select one bacterial, one fungal, and one viral pathogen capable of producing meningitis in humans. (three pathogens)

2. Describe the general characteristics and structure of each pathogen.

3. Describe in detail the pathogenenic process for each pathogen. (How does the microbe produce meningitis?)

4. What are the risk factors for infection with each pathogen?

5. What are the common methods used to diagnose infection?

6. Do these pathogens cause any other diseases?

7. List any preventative measures to protect against infection with each microbe.

Develop criteria for what you believe to be the "key" characteristic of bacteria, viruses, and fungi that must be considered when planning for a bioterrorist threat.

I need to identify a "key" characteristic for bacteria, viruses, and fungi, including structure, that you believe could be critical in understanding if an effective method for confronting a bioterrorist attack on a community is to be developed.

Review the characteristics of bacteria, viruses, and fungi and select one for each type of microorganism. For example, you may want to consider "spore forming" as a characteristic of bacteria, such as anthrax, which may serve to make it a viable bioterrorist weapon.

Justify your selection of the specific characteristics for the microorganisms selected above. Statements of justification must be factual and logical.

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