As if the zombie apocalypse wasn’t enough, during Season 4 of AMC‘s the Walking Dead (which had it’s finale on Sunday) the survivors had to deal with an unspecified, likely zoonotic, disease outbreak in the prison.
In this photo, one of the survivors who had to be intubated died and thus, we have zombie intubation!
Image Credit: AMC
This week in viral wallpaper, we’d like to present…Hantavirus!
Image and caption from the CDC: “This image reveals some of the cytoarchitectural features seen in a lymph node specimen that had been extracted from a patient suspected of a Hantavirus illness. Note the concentration of lymphohistiocytic infiltrates, almost all cases have expanded paracortical regions, or T-cell regions with immunoblasts, which sometimes extend into the cortex and into the medulla.”
This week’s image is of Chikungunya, the mosquito-transmitted virus currently making its way across the Caribbean. There have been over 1,000 laboratory-confirmed infections since the virus first appeared on St. Martin in December of last year. The virus causes symptoms similar to dengue (ouch), including febrility and severe joint pain. Luckily the disease is rarely fatal, with symptoms usually resolving within ten days.
This week’s image is of Vibrio cholerae, the gram-negative bacteria which causes the disease cholera. Cholera affects up to five million people globally each year, and causes as many as 120,000 deaths. The disease is not contagious, but is spread through ingestion of contaminated food or water, the latter often due to poor sanitation. Haiti is currently experiencing an unrelenting cholera outbreak; between October of 2010 and October of 2013, there have been over 680,000 cases.
We know we featured a gallery of plague pictures last week, but the one picture we failed to include was of the bacteria itself. Pictured below is the Yersinia pestis, the bacteria which killed millions by causing plague. While today plague in its bubonic form is easily treated, pneumonic plague has a 100% fatality rate unless antibiotics are administered within 24 hours.
(Image credit: NIAID)
This week’s image is of Coxiella burnetti, a HHS select agent and the causative bacteria of Q fever. The bacteria is primarily found in farm animals, and can be passed along through infected milk and in waste products, although the greatest number of bacteria are shed during birthing. Q fever has an incubation period of 2-3 weeks, with 50% of cases remaining asymptomatic. The disease presents with fever, myalgia, as well as broad GI symptoms. Acute forms of the disease can be much more severe, including symptoms affecting the central nervous system.
(image: Kat Masback/NIAID)
Pictured below is H1N1, the pandemic virus better known (however unfairly) as “swine flu”. As many of you undoubtedly recall, H1N1 swept the globe in 2009, causing approximately 17,000 deaths.
“Colorized transmission electron micrograph showing H1N1 influenza virus particles. Surface proteins on the virus particles are shown in black.” Image and caption: NIAID
This week’s image could obviously only be of the two newly discovered, absolutely massive, Pandoravirus. This gorgeous image comes to us via The Scientist magazine. The new viruses are so large, and their DNA so distinct from anything we have seen before, some argue they should be classified as a distinct kingdom.
(image courtesy of the Scientist/Chantal Abergel/Jean-Michel Claverie)
Our image this week is by photographer and microbiologist, Kevin J. Carpenter. The image below, taken through a scanning electron microscope, features an “anterior view of the protist Foaina sp.” For those of you in the San Francisco Bay Area, Dr. Carpenter’s work is on display at the Exploratorium Museum (basically the coolest science museum around). A second gallery is also opening in late September at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum in Vancouver, Canada. Check out his website for more information and more great images.