Just in time for Mental Health Awareness Month, the Amazing Body Store is offering a special selection of brain and mindfulness merchandise for all ages! A new batch of the dolls have been manufactured and will start shipping Nov. “I think you’re absolutely right,” said Sullivan about “humor which seems off color.” However, she said most of her sales are going to medical institutions and schools to use the toy for educational purposes. And if life does exist on other planets in the solar system, it probably looks like this! Learn how to keep today from being the day you get Giardia. Nussmen smears traces of SAVE or ‘the Nussbug’ on surfaces in the University of Washington Medical Centre and people touching those surfaces unwittingly spread the disease. Both need isolation to stop the spread.
Neither have a surefire cure, nor is there a vaccine to prevent them. In Off The Edge, the scientists, as Jim suggests they might, eventually found an anti-toxin, which, although it would not stop the spread of the bacteria, would limit the lethal damage caused by the toxin it produced. Researchers are currently working on an experimental serum that destroys cells infected with Ebola. Health care workers try to prevent infection by wearing protective masks, gloves, goggles or full bodysuits. Bacterial and viral infections can cause similar symptoms such as coughing and sneezing, fever, inflammation, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, and cramping — all of which are ways the immune system tries to rid the body of infectious organisms. This makes it difficult sometimes to tell whether an infection is bacterial or viral. Even JT says, when he first hears of the Nussbug, ‘…if it’s untreatable it’s probably a virus or maybe a prion, not a bacteria.’ Bacteria and viruses are both usually too small to be seen without a microscope but there are interesting exceptions.
For example there is a giant bacteria found in ocean sediments that can just be seen by the naked eye or at least with very powerful reading glasses, Viruses are usually smaller than bacteria but there is a 30,000 year old virus that is similar in size to ‘normal’ bacteria, though still far too small to be seen without a microscope. Both viruses and bacteria can mutate rapidly, so finding a permanent antidote is a problem. Despite these similarities, bacterial and viral infections are very different in many other important respects, as different as jelly and chocolate. Most of these differences are due to the organisms’ structural differences and the way they respond to medications. Giant Plush Microbes… and others with a softer lipid wall. They can reproduce on their own.
Fossilized records show that bacteria have existed for 3.5 billion years and perhaps much longer on Earth. Bacteria can survive in different environments, including extreme heat in deserts and in Artic ice, hot radioactive waste and of course in and on the human body. Most bacteria are harmless; many can be helpful or necessary for example in digesting food, destroying disease-causing microbes, fighting cancer cells, and providing essential nutrients. Other viruses, however, such as the herpesviruses, actually enter a time known as “viral latency,” when little or no replication is taking place until further replication is initiated by a specific trigger. Viruses are tinier: the largest of them are smaller on the whole than the smallest bacteria. Essentially all they are is a strand of genetic material, either RNA or DNA. Unlike bacteria, viruses can’t survive long without a host.
They can only reproduce by inserting themselves into cells. In most cases, they reprogram the cells to make new viruses until often the cells burst and die. In other cases, they may turn normal cells into malignant or cancerous cells. During the latency period, the TB-resistant host is not contagious. For example, certain viruses attack cells in the liver, respiratory system, or blood. In some cases, viruses target bacteria. We all know about specific problems caused by viruses, such as Herpes, Measels, Mumps, Polio, Rabies, Dengue Fever, and those pesky skin growths, warts.
The virus Ebola causes bleeding inside and outside the body. As it spreads through the body, it damages the immune system and organs. The Nussbug, Vancomycin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus is more similar to MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus), the bacteria that cause so much trouble in hospitals, but the Nussbug cannot be treated by the Vanquishing antibiotics, used as a last resort for tough bacteria such as MRSA.. Healthy people can contract the Nussbug and are not infectious until they display the symptoms. People, including doctors and medical staff, could infect others while showing no symptoms and never getting sick themselves . Only those whose immune systems were already damaged or weak, e.g. the sick, the old, the very young and those undergoing chemotherapy, were likely to suffer from the Nussbug.
This made it more evil in some people’s eyes, although it also made it easier to contain. And of course the main difference is that Ebola is a real virus and a growing threat while the Nussbug is only fictional, the product of RS Perry’s fertile imagination. Like most things in the Jim Johnson novels, however, it is based on fact and the possibility is out there. Since these microbes evolve so quickly, it is likely that there is already a Vancomycin resistant Staphylococcus Aureus. Let’s hope that there is no real genius like Nussmen, temporarily crazy for whatever reason, deliberately willing to put us at more risk than we potentially already are from the many viruses and bacteria at large in the world. Are you a doctor? Do you have any experience of treating viral or bacterial epidemics?
Have you, or anyone you know, had the misfortune to be infected during an epidemic?