March 2018: Tuberculosis and Mycobacteria
Tuberculosis and Mycobacteria
On March 24, 1882, German physician Robert Koch announced the discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the organism that causes tuberculosis (TB), a disease that had plagued humanity for centuries, caused more deaths than any other disease in industrialized countries during the 19th and early 20th centuries, and remains a leading cause of death in the world. March 24 is now commemorated as World TB Day in honor of Koch’s discovery, which EID commemorates by making mycobacteria or TB (caused by a type of mycobacteria) the theme for its March issues.
About the Cover – Peace, Liberty, Mycobacteria, and Tuberculosis Mortality
In 1935, Gerhard Domagk and Josef Klarer, working with dyes at the Bayer Institute of Pathology and Bacteriology, published the results of several clinical investigations of sulfamidochrysoidine. This antibacterial drug was the first of the sulfonamide-containing or related products that transformed approaches to treatment of infection and heralded the antibiotic era. Before that, the only antimicrobials available were the arsenicals (arsphenamine and neosalvarsan), which were used to treat syphilis.
You can read the entire About the Cover essay here.
Veterinarian Gets Flu Virus from Cats
Dr. Todd Davis, a CDC research biologist, discusses transmission of avian H7N2 from a cat to a human.
In 1957, Piero Sensi and colleagues isolated a new bacterium, Streptomyces mediterranei (now Amycolatopsis rifamycinica), from a soil sample from a pine forest in France. Material extracted from fermentation broths of A. rifamycinica contained microbiologically active substances that, as a group, were nicknamed Rififi. Rififi (French slang for “trouble”) was a 1955 French gangster film that was popular at the time and became the root of the name “rifamycin” for this group of antimicrobial agents. (Similarly, matamycin was originally nicknamed Mata Hari.) Rifampin (also known as rifampicin) is the N-amino-N'-methylpiperazine (AMP) derivative of rifamycin.
You can read the entire Etymologia here.
Tuberculosis—the Face of Struggles, the Struggles We Face, and the Dreams That Lie Within
Tuberculosis disease, or phthisis (Φθισϊϲ, the Greek word for consumption), was named by the father of allopathic medicine, Hippocrates (c. 460–370 BCE), because the disease appeared to consume the affected person through substantial weight loss and wasting (1). Hippocrates warned his students against treating persons in late stages of tuberculosis, because nearly all of their patients would die, which would likely tarnish their reputations as healers.
You can read the entire Another Dimension here.
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