Infectious Diseases part 2

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  • Infectious Diseases 2
    • Pain killers- get rid of symptoms (eg headache), they do not kill the pathogen
    • Antibiotics-help to cure bacterial disease by killing infectious bacteria inside the body
      • Antibiotics cannot be used to kill viruses because they live and reproduce inside cells.
      • If antibiotic is prescribed too much it develops resistance (cannot be killed by that antibiotic)
        • Pathogens mutate, producing resistant strains. 
          • Mutations- a random, spontaneous change in DNA- all offspring of the mutation will also be resistant
        • 1) Bacterium develops resistance to an antibiotic 2)Bacterium divides and reproduces 3)Population of antibiotic resistant bacteria
        • The new strain will then spread rapidly because people are not immune to it and there is no effective treatment.
        • Now, antibiotics are not used to treat non-serious infections, such as mild throat infections, so that the rate of development of resistant strains is slowed down.
    • To investigate antibiotics and disinfectants uncontaminated cultures of microorganisms are used
      • Petri dishes and culture media (agar) must be sterilised before use to kill unwanted microorganisms
      • Inoculating loops used to transfer microorganisms to the media must be sterilised by passing them through a flame
      • The lid of the Petri dish should be secured with adhesive tape to prevent microorganisms from the air contaminating the culture.
      • In schools, cultures should be incubated at 25 degrees to reduce the likelihood of pathogens growing
      • In industry, cultures are incubated in much higher temps because the are better equipped to handle pathogens and growth of microorganisms is more rapid

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