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Feb 01, 2024


Case Studies.

I. Westley and Buttercup are traveling through the Fire Swamp when they are both bitten by an ROUS (rodent of unusual size-an animal). ROUSs are known to carry the Rugen virus. The Rugen virus causes humans to grow a sixth finger on the right hand, a burning desire to start a land war in Asia, a tolerance to iocaine powder (a poison), and gigantism. Both Westly and Buttercup develop these signs and symptoms rapidly. There are approximately 100 cases of Rugen virus infection every single month. Explain all the answers!

1. What is the mode of transmission of the Rugen virus?

2. What is the source of the virus?

3. What are the signs of this illness?

4. What are the symptoms of this illness?

5. Is this infection acute, subacute, chronic, or latent? Why?

6. Based on your previous answer, what type of virus lifestyle is this an example of?

7. What are the steps associated with this life cycle?

8. Is this virus endemic, epidemic, sporadic, or pandemic? Explain your answer.

The virus has the following one-step growth curve: Given the information in the graph, what is the length of the eclipse phase and what is the burst size for this virus?

II. In an alternate universe, there is another version of the Rugen virus that instead follows a life cycle where it integrates its genome into the host chromosome. This virus has an RNA genome. What are the steps involved with this life cycle? What enzyme might be needed in this process? How might this change the process of infection?

III. Fortunately, Westley and Buttercup survive their bout of the Rugen virus and make a full recovery. Alas, not long after Buttercup is kidnapped again, Westley has been alone, where madness drives him to eat brains. He then develops some kind of neurological disorder that seems to be a direct result of eating other human brains. He once again ends up in the hands of Miracle Max. The infectious agent contains no nucleic acid. A scan of Westley`s brain indicates the buildup of some kind of fibril.

1. What kind of infectious agent might this be? Explain your answer.

2. What are some characteristics of this type of infection?

3. Explain why or how these agents are infectious (be very specific here-biochemical level)

IV. Well, thanks to Miracle Max (they don`t call him Miracle for nothing), Westley is able to make a full recovery. Westley and Buttercup live happily ever after. We don`t see such a happy end for the scoundrels Vizzini and Rugen (original discoverers of the Rugen virus). Vizzini seems to have contracted a bizarre infection while he was also suffering from the Rugen virus, which caused him to try to start a land war in Asia. There he enjoyed some of the local cuisine, which was not prepared in the most hygienic manner by the people cooking the food. He developed a high fever, night sweats, dizziness, an uncomfortable purple rash in the groin region, and an overwhelming feeling of superiority due to his Sicilian background. His toenails turned orange, and then the toenails started falling off. He thinks one of the chefs may have had these orange toenails too. Indeed, several hundred people have been admitted to the local hospital in recent weeks with similar signs and symptoms. Last month, there were no cases. Vinzzini`s signs and symptoms stopped after a week or so but returned again once every three months.

1. What is the mode of transmission?

2. What is the source of this infection?

3. What are the signs of this illness?

4. What are the symptoms of this illness?

5. Is this illness sporadic, endemic, epidemic, or pandemic? Explain your answer.

6. Is this infection acute, subacute, chronic, or latent? Explain your answer.

V. The above infection, caused by the organism Reiner carlous, a Gram-negative non-sporeformer, seems to be producing some interesting exotoxins. Here is a list of the exotoxins made by this organism (in BOLD)

Toenailase - a protease, cleaves the connection between the toenail and the bed

Nuclease - breaks down nucleic acids

Inigotoxin - produces seven subunits that are are are are then arrange in a cylinder in the membrane of groin cells.

Hyaluronidase - attacks hyaluronic acid

Morgenstern toxin - has five binding subunits and one active subunit. Active subunit targets a G-protein inside brain cells that increases the production of chemicals that lead to a sense of superiority.

Fezzikase - specifically targets phospholipids

Humperdinckin-1 - has binding sites for both MHC class II and T-cell receptors. Appears to activate up to 20% of a person`s Th cells.

Using the above information, answer the following:

1. Which are membrane-disrupting toxins? What membrane-disrupting toxins (from the class) is each most closely related to?

2. Which are strictly enzymatic toxins (and not membrane-disrupting)? Give a brief description of this class of exotoxins and why a cell might produce them.

3. Which are similar to AB-type toxins? Which AB-type toxin(s) are they most similar to? Give a brief description of this class of exotoxins.

4. Which is/are a superantigen? How do superantigens cause damage?

5. How many total toxins are in this organism? How many exotoxins?

VI. A certain Gordon State microbiology professor has begun to act very strangely. She seems to believe she is "the Queen of the IC A/C system" and that all must bow down to her greatness and bring her cheese and bread, or she will alternately make the building very hot or very cold. She tells you she has been talking to a giant wheel of cheese who gave her the title. Upon further inspection, she seems to have gumma on her left arm and right leg, and doctors have diagnosed her with an aortic aneurysm. She also appears to have Charcot`s knee. Evidence from her past medical history indicates that she has previously been diagnosed with sexually transmitted infections.

1. What are the signs of this disease?

2. What are the symptoms of this disease?

3. Is this disease communicable? Explain your answer.

4. Is this disease spread by direct or indirect contact? Explain your answer.

5. What disease do you think Dr. Stanley a certain microbiologist have?

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