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Gram-Negative Bacteria: The Determinants of Pathogenicity

  • H. Smith

Abstract

In contrast to the success of public health measures in controlling the worst effects of infectious disease, the mechanisms of most microbial infections remain obscure (48). Nevertheless with increasing realisation that many troublesome aspects of infectious disease have not been removed by improved public health or by the antibiotic era, interest in the determinants of microbial pathogenicity is re-awakening with a view to designing fresh control measures. Much of the renewed activity has involved the gram-negative organisms and I have been asked to survey current knowledge of their pathogenicity. In the time available I can only summarise the main points under headings describing the cardinal requirements for pathogenicity: 1. ability to enter the host by surviving on and penetrating mucous surfaces; 2. ability to multiply in the nutritional conditions of the host tissues; 3. ability to inhibit host defence mechanisms; and 4. ability to damage the host. The general methods for investigating the determinants of microbial pathogenicity and the difficulties encountered have been described (48) and will not be re-iterated here.

Keywords

Typhoid Fever Public Health Measure Avirulent Strain Shigella Dysenteriae Mucous Surface 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 1975

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  • H. Smith

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