Spirillum minus

This species is a motile bacterium only 0.2 im thick and 3-5 im long with two to three spiral windings. It cannot be grown on culture mediums. S. minus causes spirillary rat bite fever, also known as sodoku. This disease occurs worldwide, with a high level of incidence in Japan. The organism is transmitted to humans by the bites of rats, mice, squirrels, and domestic animals that eat rodents. Following an incubation period of seven to 21 days a febrile condition develops with lymphangitis and lymphadenitis. Ulcerous lesions develop at the portal of entry. Diagnosis can be done by using dark field or phase contrast microscopy to detect the spirilla in blood or ulcerous material. Penicillin G is used to treat the infection.

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Essentials of Human Physiology

Essentials of Human Physiology

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