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Anthrax bacterium

Anthrax bacterium

B220/1017

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Credit

A. DOWSETT, HEALTH PROTECTION AGENCY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY A. DOWSETT, HEALTH PROTECTION AGENCY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Anthrax bacterium. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of an anthrax bacterium (Bacillus anthracis). Anthrax bacteria are rod-shaped, Gram-positive bacteria which are highly pathogenic. Commonly an infection of livestock, B.anthracis is transmitted to humans by contact with contaminated animal hair, hides or excrement. Two forms of the disease occur: pneumonia in the lungs (woolsorter's disease), and cutaneous anthrax, which causes a large boil at the site of the bacteria's entry. Antibiotic treatment, if prompt, may be effective for the skin infection. Pulmonary anthrax is fatal in most cases. Magnification: x10,500 at 5x7cm size.

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