Biology Unit 1 Pathogens

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  • Cause of Disease
    • Classed as either infectious or non-infectious.
      • Infectious diseases caused by pathogens eg bacteria and viruses (common cold, food poisoning or chest infections)
      • Non-infectious diseases are caused by the body malfunctioning (cancer, heart disease)
    • Disease caused by lifestyle
      • Anything that increases the chance of disease is called a risk factor. The two most common diseases are cancer or CHD.
      • Coronary heart disease (CHD) can have an increased risk form:
        • Poor diet-high saturated fats, salt and LDL's increase the risk. Smoking, Lack of exercise and alcohol also increase risk.
        • Smoking, Lack of exercise and alcohol can damage the heart and blood vessels.
      • Cancer has an increased risk from:
      • Reducing risk
        • A healthy lifestyle lowers risk but it doesn't ensure you wont develop these diseases
        • Risk=a measure of probability that damage to health will occur as a result of a given hazard
        • Needs a timescale.
        • Risk is relative, if you smoke you are more likely to get lung disease.
    • Pathogens
      • For a micro-organism to be considered a pathogen it must:
        • 1. Gain entry to the host
          • 2. Colonise the tissue of the host
            • 3. Resist the defences of the host
              • 4.Cause damage to the host
      • A pathogen is a micro-organism that causes disease (bacteria, viruses, fungi)
      • Pathogens can enter the body through:
        • The digestive system
        • breaks in the skin
        • The gas exchange system
      • How does the body defend   against pathogens
        • Enzymes break down pathogens
        • A mucus layer that forms a barrier
        • Production of stomach acid
      • How do pathogens cause disease:
        • By producing toxins
        • By damaging host tissues


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