MICHAEL ABBEY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MICHAEL ABBEY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Anthrax bacteria. Light micrograph of a section through tissue infected with anthrax bacteria (Bacillus anthracis). These Gram-positive bacteria (small red rods) are seen with cells (blue) with oval red nuclei. Commonly a livestock infection, B. anthracis is passed to humans by contact with contaminated animal hair, hides or excrement. The bacteria can also remain dormant in the soil for years within spores. The disease comes in two forms. In cutaneous anthrax, a boil forms at the site of the bacteria's entry. The disease can be cured with prompt antibiotic treatment. Pulmonary anthrax, however, is normally fatal. Brightfield illumination. Magnification: x400 at 35mm size.
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