biologic transmission: Disease transmission in which an infectious organism undergoes some morphologic or physiologic change during its passage through the vector.
botulism: Form of food poisoning caused by a neurotoxin produced by Clostridium botulinum. Sometimes found in improperly canned or preserved food.
broad-spectrum drug: Chemotherapeutic agent that is effective across a wide range of different types of pathogens.
carrier: Infected individual who is a potential source of infection for other people.
cell-mediated immunity: Immunity that results from T-cells contacting foreign or infected cells and destroying them.
chemotherapeutic agent: Compound used in the treatment of disease that kills or inhibits the growth of microorganisms and does so at concentrations low enough to avoid doing damage to the host.
chicken pox: Highly contagious skin disease caused by the varicella-zoster virus. Acquired by droplet inhalation into the respiratory system.
cholera: Infectious disease caused by Vibrio cholerae.
coccus: Bacterium that is roughly spherical in shape.
common cold: Acute, self-limiting, and highly contagious viral infection of the upper respiratory tract.
communicable disease: Disease associated with an agent that can be transmitted from one host to another.
complement system: Group of circulating plasma proteins that plays a major role in an animal's immune response.
compromised host: Host with lowered resistance to infection and disease for any reason (for example, malnutrition, illness, trauma, or immunosuppression).
conjugation: Form of gene transfer and recombination in bacteria that requires direct cell-to-cell contact.
conjugative plasmid: Plasmid that carries the genes for sex pili and can transfer copies of itself to other bacteria during conjugation.
contact transmission: Transmission of an infectious agent by direct contact of the source or its reservoir with the host.
Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease: Chronic, progressive, fatal disease of the central nervous system caused by a prion.
disinfectant: Agent that kills, inhibits, or removes microorganisms that may cause disease.
DPT (diphtheria-pertussis-tetanus) vaccine: Vaccine containing three antigens that is used to immunize people against diphtheria, whooping cough, and tetanus.
epidemic: Sudden increase in occurrence of a disease above the normal level in a particular population.
epidemiologist: Person who specializes in epidemiology.
epidemiology: Study of the factors determining and influencing the frequency and distribution of disease, injury, and disability in a population.
eukaryotic cell: Cell that has its genetic material (DNA) enclosed by a nuclear membrane.
fungicide: Agent that kills fungi.
giardiasis: Intestinal disease caused by the protozoan Giardia lamblia.
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