Person-to-Person Bacterial and Viral Diseases - Tuberculosis and Leprosy

8 important questions on Person-to-Person Bacterial and Viral Diseases - Tuberculosis and Leprosy

Why is Mycobacterium tuberculosis a widespread respiratory pathogen?

Mycobacterium tuberculosis is a widespread respiratory pathogen because it is highly infectious and can spread easily through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Additionally, the bacterium has developed mechanisms to evade the immune system and persist within the lungs, leading to chronic infections that can be difficult to eradicate. This combination of factors contributes to its ability to cause widespread respiratory disease.

Describe three common characteristics of pathogenic mycobacteria.

Three common characteristics of pathogenic mycobacteria are their ability to form thick, waxy cell walls composed of mycolic acids, their slow growth rate, and their resistance to conventional antibiotics. These features contribute to their pathogenicity and ability to survive in harsh conditions, making them difficult to treat and eradicate.

Describe the key characteristics of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium leprae. What staining property is shared by these bacteria, and how is it demonstrated in the laboratory?

M. tuberculosis and M. leprae are gram-positive, acid-fast bacteria with waxy cell walls. The staining property is demonstrated using carbol-fuchsin, which remains after washing the mycobacterial smear in 3% hydrochloric acid in alcohol.
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Explain the global impact of tuberculosis, including transmission, prevalence, and key diagnostic methods. How does the immune response contribute to controlling TB, and what is the significance of the tuberculin test?

TB is transmitted through the respiratory route and affects nearly 1.5 million people annually. About one-third of the world's population has been infected. Cell-mediated immunity plays a critical role in suppressing active disease. The tuberculin test detects hypersensitivity to M. tuberculosis.

Discuss the forms of tuberculosis and their manifestations. How does TB progress in the lungs, and what are the consequences of uncontrolled disease?

TB can be primary or postprimary infection. Primary infection results in tubercles, while postprimary TB involves granulomas. Uncontrolled disease can lead to extensive destruction of lung tissue and is often fatal.

Explain the role of isoniazid in the treatment of tuberculosis. How does isoniazid affect mycobacteria, and what is the significance of multiple drug therapy in preventing antibiotic resistance?

Isoniazid inhibits mycolic acid synthesis, compromising cell wall integrity in mycobacteria. Multiple drug therapy, including rifampin, is crucial to prevent antibiotic resistance. Resistance to isoniazid and other drugs is increasing, especially in HIV/AIDS patients.

Describe the clinical manifestations and complications of leprosy caused by Mycobacterium leprae. How is leprosy transmitted, and what are the treatment protocols for different forms of the disease?

Leprosy manifests as folded, bulb-like lesions and can lead to nerve damage. It is transmitted by direct contact and airborne route. Treatment involves a multiple drug therapy protocol, including dapsone, rifampin, and clofazimine. Tuberculoid leprosy has a good prognosis for spontaneous recovery.

Discuss the global status of leprosy, including prevalence, key affected regions, and diagnostic advancements. Why is leprosy considered a neglected tropical disease?

In 2019, 202,000 cases of leprosy were reported globally, with high prevalence in countries like India, Brazil, and Indonesia. A specific blood test aids in early-stage diagnosis. Leprosy is considered a neglected tropical disease due to its association with poverty and malnutrition.

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