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Lecture 7

Lecture 7 Study Guide

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Environmental Science
Jovan Stefanovic

EESA10 Lecture 7 Biological Hazards and Human Health This lecture overlaps with next lecture on Food and Food borne Diseases, because they both have same agents, bacteria, viruses. These can be considered as biological hazards but also they can found in food substances, and cause food borne hazards. Biological Hazards Biological Hazards can be nontransmissible (cannot be transferred from one human to another human). Examples of such nontransmissible diseases include: cardiovascular, cancer, diabetes, asthma. What are cardiovascular diseases? These are diseases related to heart as a result of food (high cholesterol), lack of exercise, lots of stress, smoking, etc. Cancer has many different causes (we cannot specify just one cause for it). Every cancer is caused with many different agents (environmental, genetical, etc.). There is no strong proof that these diseases can be transferred from human to human. Diabetes can be caused because of genetics, food, and obesity. There is no strong evidence that diabetes can be transferred from human to human. Asthma is closely related with some allergens (something in our environment). Everyday many new agents and chemicals and applied to us, and they may cause asthma. There is no proof that asthma can be transmitted from human to human. Transmissible diseases: Diseases caused by bacteria, viruses, or protozoa can be certainly transferred from humans to humans. Bacteria can be cured using anti-biotics. Anti-biotics are medicine that we take if we have bacterial infections. However, Anti-biotics do not work with viral infections. For example, doctors will not prescribe anti-biotics if you have flu, or some other kind of viral infection. If you take anti-biotics for any viral infection or any other infection, you will be overusing anti-biotics (using anti-biotics when we do not need it, or not prescribed by the doctor, or taking anti-biotics more frequently for not very serious disease). What will happen as a result? This can lead to very significant resistance of bacteria to these anti-biotics. Next time, if someone is really serious, and needs anti-biotics, those anti-biotics will not work. This is because growing germ produces resistance to antibiotics. How do the bacterias develop resistance? This is because they are growing very fast. They reproduce very quickly. Also, they very quickly transfer that mutation (that adjustment) to the next generation. This process goes through generation to generation very quickly, much faster than any other organism on the planet can do (High reproductive rate allow them to become genetically resistant quickly). One more reason why bacterias grow resistance to anti-biotics is because of the use of antibiotics in food additives to boost livestock. Veterinarians, agriculture specialists, farmers, they all use antibiotics to prevent diseases in animals. Farmers use antibiotics to prevent disease from happening, and if we consume that kind of meat (with high concentration of anti-biotics), we might become more resistant to antibiotics. Biological Hazards Bacterial Diseases
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