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1Matt Cowper Katie Pazur The Plague Y. pestisMatt CowperKatie Pazurhttps://publicaffairs.llnl.gov/Images/pestis_big.jpg
2Yersinia pestisYersinia originally classified in Pasteurellaceae familyBased on DNA similarities with E. coli, Y. pestis is now part of Enterobacteriaceae family11 named species in genus 3 are human pathogensY. pestis, Y. pseudotuberculosis, Y. enterocoliticaY. pestis and Y. pseudotuberculosis rarely infect humansY. enterocolitica is the cause of 1 – 3% of diarrhea cases caused by bacteria
3Yersinia pestis Gram-negative bacteria Can grow with or without oxygen Most commonly found in rats but also found in:Mice, squirrels, fleas, cats, dogs, lice, prairie dogs, wood rats, chipmunks
4Types of Plague Bubonic Plague Pneumonic Plague Septicemic Plague Most commonInfection of the lymph system (attacks immune system)Pneumonic PlagueMost serious type of plagueInfection of the lungs leading to pneumoniaPrimary and SecondarySepticemic PlagueBacteria reproduces in the bloodCan be contracted like bubonic plague but is most often seen as a complication of untreated bubonic or pneumonic plaguePneumonic – primary: contracted when infected droplets are directly inhaled. This can be passed from person to person. Secondary: develops when bubonic or septicemic goes untreated moves to lungs and then can be spread to someone else.
5Diagnosis and Treatment Symptoms Most cases of plague are diagnosed initially from presented symptoms, especially Bubonic plague. If plague is suspected, blood work is completed to determine how far the plague has progressed and to determine antibiotic resistances.Since no major antibiotic resistances have developed, plague is usually treated with Streptomycin. Other antibiotics that can be used are: tetracyclines, fluoroquinolones and other aminoglycosides.Antibiotics are administered to the patient as well as to those who are believed to have been exposed.SymptomsBubonicFever, headache, chills, weakness, swollen and tender lymph glandsPneumonicFever, headache, weakness, rapid onset of pneumonia (usually accompanied by: shortness of breath, chest pain, cough, bloody or watery sputum)SepticemicFever, chills, weakness, abdominal pain, shock, bleeding underneath skin or other organsLymph glands are called buboes, hence the name bubonic
7TransmissionBubonic and Septicemic can not be transferred human to human. They can only be contracted if bitten by an infected rodent or flea.Pneumonic can be transferred through exposure to infected particles. This usually occurs when in close contact with someone who is infected and is exposed to sputum that is coughed up.
9History There have been three major pandemics of the plague. Mid 6th century, mid 14th century, early 20th centuryThe most well known plague pandemic was in the mid 14th century in Europe known as the Black DeathThe plague came from Asia and spread through Europe in two years.In the two years, it killed more than half of the population.People didn’t understand how the plague worked which allowed it to spread .Benefits.
11Incidence Considered a re-emerging disease. Incidence is on the rise: 2,000 to 3,000 cases a year worldwide.
12Current Research at UNC While the plague isn’t causing major problems amongst humans and it is easily treatable, scientists are beginning to consider its potential use as a bioweapon.Here at UNC, Dr. William Goldman is studying the mechanisms of plague.Using a mouse model, they are studying the progression of Pneumonic Plague and are working on determining how to slow its progression so it can be more effectively treated.