Emerging Infectious Diseases of Humans

Emerging Infectious Diseases of Humans

A pathogen is a biological agent that causes illness or disease to its host.

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Emerging means newly discovered or newly appearing in humans or newly appearing in a distinctly different geographic area.

Therefore, Emerging Pathogens or Emerging Infectious Diseases are those which have been discovered recently, within the last 10-30 years.

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines an emerging disease as “one that has appeared in a population for the first time, or that may have existed previously but is rapidly increasing in incidence or geographic range.”

This week, we will examine some emerging pathogens and diseases!
For your first post, you must tell us about your chosen emerging infectious disease pathogen: where and when it was discovered, the signs and symptoms of disease, transmission, course of disease, virulence factors, laboratory diagnosis, treatments, preventions and sequelae. Your discussion should be well-written, in your own words, paraphrasing from only credible academic sources. You may not directly quote from your sources. You must also cite your credible academic reference sources in text and provide full end ref information in APA format. The initial post must be at least 300-400 words


Sample Answer


Helicobacter Pylori

Helicobacter pylori is a bacteria which inhabits the digestive system. H. pylori causes stomach and duodenal ulcers (Graham, 2015). H. pylori bacteria was discovered in 1982 by doctors Robin Warren and Barry Marshall from Perth, Western Australia. The two doctors discovered the bacteria in the stomachs of their patients. Through the discovery, and proceeding clinical experiments, the two doctors proved that the H. pylori bacteria caused duodenal and gastric ulcers.

For most people, having H. pylori manifests no discernable signs and symptoms. When the signs and symptoms occur, the individual will experience bloating, abdominal discomfort, nausea, and vomiting. In more serious cases, the individual will experience abdominal pain, peptic ulcers, nausea and vomiting, heartburn, decreased appetite, frequent burping, and fatigue (Colledge & Cafasso, 2019).  Other symptoms include diarrhea and black tarry stools.

  1. pylori spread from person to person by oral-to-oral transmission or contact with saliva. The bacteria can also spread through fecal-to-oral contact with an infected person’s fecal waste. H. pylori can also spread through ingestion of contaminated water and food. Most people acquire the H. pylori infection during their childhood.

When in the stomach, H. pylori releases the urease which enables the survival of  the bacteria in the stomach’s acidic environment by alkalizing its surroundings. With a growing presence, the bacteria causes mucosal inflammation which leads to ulceration. Afterwards, the H. pylori inflames the stomach lining. Subsequently, the bacteria cause the loss of stomach cells and the transformation of the stomach lining.

Virulence actors for H. pylori colonization are urease, adhesins, and lipase, and flagella chemotaxis system (Chang et al., 2018). The virulence factors for immune escape are VacA, LPS and flagella, CagA & T4SS and arginase. The virulence factors for disease induction are VacA, BabA, DupA, and IceA.

Laboratory diagnoses for H. pylori are the stool antigen tests, blood tests, endoscopic biopsies, and urea breath test. The stool test checks for presence of the bacteria in the person’s feces sample. The blood test analyzes a blood sample for the existence of H. pylori. Endoscopic biopsy entails culturing biopsies in the laboratory for the presence of the bacteria. Finally, a urea breath test involves analyzing a breath sample for the presence of carbon dioxide after administration of a capsule containing urea.

The primary treatment for H. pylori is medication. The individual will be required to take two different antibiotics through oral administration. The antibiotics are taken together with a drug that reduces stomach acidity to increase the effectiveness of the antibiotics (Colledge & Cafasso, 2019). The most common antibiotics for treatment of the bacteria are amoxillin, clarithromycin, and metronidazole. Usually, the H pylori clears after one round of the antibiotics.  More rounds are necessary if the presence of the bacteria is detected after the first complete round of antibiotics.

People can avoid H. pylori infections by adhering to high standards of hygiene. There is need for high standards of hand hygiene through regular hand washing. People should observe the highest standards of hygiene during food preparation. Individuals are encouraged to drink water only if it is safe and clean. After the diagnosis of H. pylori, the individual should complete the treatment course to prevent recurrence of the infection.

In severe cases, H. pylori leads to development of gastric mucosal atrophy. The gastric mucosal atrophy happens as a result of loss of glandular cells and the chronic inflammation of the gastric mucosa. In chronic conditions, H. pylori also causes gastric cancer, characterized by malignant growths in the stomach lining (Graham, 2015).





Chang, W. L., Yeh, Y. C., & Sheu, B. S. (2018). The impacts of H. pylori virulence factors on the development of gastroduodenal diseases. Journal of biomedical science, 25(1), 1-9.

Colledge, H. & Cafasso, J. (2019). H. pylori infection. Retrieved from: https://www.healthline.com/health/helicobacter-pylori

Graham, D. Y. (2015). Helicobacter pylori update: gastric cancer, reliable therapy, and possible benefits. Gastroenterology, 148(4), 719-731.

Marshall, B. (2016). A Brief History of the Discovery of Helicobacter pylori. In Helicobacter pylori (pp. 3-15). Springer, Tokyo.


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