3/1 Spirochetes and Mycoplasma

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BSC 361
Spirochetes and Mycoplasma
T. pallidum most significant-syphilis
Only found in humans
Cannot use light microscope
Primary-lesions at site of inoculation and some lymph node involvement
Secondary-flu-like symptoms, more wide spread lymp node involvement and
lesions over the body
Tertiary or late stage-any body system may be involved-Neurosyphilis is worst
Hyaluronidase is important for virulence
Also can become coated with fibronectin
No vaccine available and can be reinfected
Causes Relapsing fever and Lyme disease
Relapsing fever-two kinds
Epidemic-louse borne-body to body contact-single relapse
Endemic-soft ticks-multiple relapses
Lyme disease
B. burgdorferi-stretched out spirochete
Typical symptoms- Erythema migrans-wandering rash-bullseye
Low grade fever, malaise, myalgia flu-like symptoms
Can develop long-term neuritis if left untreated. Onset from 1 month to 2 years after
Social factors involved in Lyme
Vaccine-OspA once available but recalled
Mycoplasma and ureaplasma
No cell wall, but have sterols in cell membrane
Smallest free living bacteria
M. pnuemoniae is most significant pathogen
Causes walking pneumonia and tracheobronchitis 18 million cases in US in 1998
Expresses P1 protein that binds to the base of cilia on epithelial cells. Eventually the
cilia stop moving and the cells are sloughed off
This allows secondary infections with bacteria that are often treated rather than the
primary infection
U. urealyticum (some strains)causes nongonococcal urethritis. Commonly found in
sexually active individuals
May cause sterility in females, PID, salpyngitis etc. similar to GC

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