Spreading of disease through pathogens
In biology, a pathogen in the oldest and broadest sense is any organism that can produce disease. A pathogen may also be referred to as an infectious agent, or simply a germ. The term pathogen came into use in the 1880s. Typically, the term is used to describe an infectious microorganism or agent, such as a virus, bacterium, protozoan, prion, viroid, or fungus.
Small animals, such as certain kinds of worms and insect larvae, can also produce disease. However, these animals are usually, in common parlance, referred to as parasites rather than pathogens. The scientific study of microscopic organisms, including microscopic pathogenic organisms, is called microbiology, while the study of disease that may include these pathogens is called pathology. Parasitology, meanwhile, is the scientific study of parasites and the organisms that host them.
There are several pathways through which pathogens can invade a host. The principal pathways have different episodic time frames, but soil has the longest or most persistent potential for harboring a pathogen. Diseases in humans that are caused by infectious agents are known as pathogenic diseases. Not all diseases are caused by pathogens; other causes are, for example, toxins, genetic disorders and the host's own immune system.
Types of pathogens
There are different types of pathogens, but we’re going to focus on the four most common types: viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites.
Viruses: Viruses are made up of a piece of genetic code, such as DNA or RNA, and protected by a coating of protein. Once you’re infected, viruses invade host cells within your body. They then use the components of the host cell to replicate, producing more viruses.
Bacteria: Bacteria are microorganisms made of a single cell. They are very diverse, have a variety of shapes and features, and have the ability to live in just about any environment, including in and on your body. Not all bacteria cause infections. Those that can are called pathogenic bacteria.
Fungi: There are millions of different fungal species on Earth. Just 300 or so are known to cause sickness. Fungi can be found just about everywhere in the environment, including indoors, outdoors, and on human skin. They cause infection when they overgrow.
Parasites: Parasites are organisms that behave like tiny animals, living in or on a host and feeding from or at the expense of the host. Though parasitic infections are more common in tropical and subtropical regions, they can occur anywhere.
The following are ways that you can protect yourself and others against pathogens: Wash your hands often, Get vaccinated and ensure vaccinations are up to date, Prepare, cook, and store meat and other foods properly, Stay home when you’re sick, especially if you have a fever or diarrhea, or are vomiting, Don’t share personal items, such as razors or toothbrushes, Don’t share drinking glasses or utensils, Protect against insect bites, Practice safe sex and Travel wisely by getting informed about health risks and special vaccinations.
The journal of “Medical Microbiology & Diagnosis” is a peer reviewed medical journal that includes a wide range of topics in this fields including Bacteriology, Clinical and Medical Diagnostics, Parasitology, Bacterial Infections and creates a platform for the authors to make their contribution towards the journal. The editorial office promises a thorough peer review of the submitted manuscripts to ensure quality.
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