Saturday, July 28, 2012

Viruses and Bacteria Essay

Viruses and Bacteria Essay

Viruses and bacteria are all around us. We cannot see them without microscopes, but this doesn’t lessen the danger of infection. Knowledge about their structure, functions and consequences of prevention ignoring can safe us and our patients from serious diseases.

Virus is a small particle (20-300 nm) that can infect the cells of living organisms, and bacterium is a microorganism itself. Viruses do not perform reproduction function, as they can replicate only in case of host cell infection. There several types of viruses and all of them differ with the structure, they are: helical viruses, icosahedral viruses, enveloped viruses and complex viruses. The simplest form of virus’ structure is the following: nucleic acid and capsid. The distinctive feature of virus activity is that it doesn’t multiply by means of cell division, as it is acellular. Virus can infect eukaryotes (fungi, plants, animals, etc.) and prokaryotes (archaea and bacteria).

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Structure of a bacterium cell is the following: there is a DNA (nucleoid) surrounded by cytoplasm and ribosomes; there is a mesosome and plasma membrane, cell wall and bacterial flagellum. Bacteria reproduce by means of binary fission, but primarily it has to grow to optimum size. Under particular conditions bacteria can reproduce very quickly. They are considered to be alive as they are self-sufficient in their reproduction function. There are many types of bacteria, but only pathogenic ones can be the reason of infectious diseases arousal, for example syphilis. It can be treated with antibiotics, such as penicillin. In case when a person has an allergy for this type of remedy, it can be treated with oral tetracycline.

Viruses can cause such serious human diseases, such as influenza and AIDs. The distinctive feature is that antibiotics cannot do any harm for viral diseases. The best decision in this case is preventing diseases with vaccination, which produced immunity.

The characteristics that establish life are all living things are made up of cells, all grow and reproduce based on heritable info from DNA, all evolve and all require input of energy. Viruses are not considered alive even though they contain RNA or DNA they need a host cell to reproduce. Viruses are not cells and cannot evolve or use energy. Bacterium is a prokaryotic cell; it can reproduce, and uses the input of energy. Bacterium also evolves as shown in certain resistances to antibiotics.

There are a lot of diseases that I can face during my nurse practice. There can be genetic predispositions to them, and also there can be genetic disorders and mutations, that can be caused by ecological matters.

DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid) is defined as nucleic acid molecule, which carries genetic instructions that are vital for functioning and development of all living organisms. The key DNA function is long-term information storage. DNA id directly connected with RNA, nucleic acid polymer that plays an important role in the process of translation of genetic information from DNA to proteins. RNA and DNA structures are nearly the same, but there are several critical differences: RNA contains ribose sugars, DNA- deoxyribose, RNA involves urasil and DNA- thymine. RNA also takes part in the process of transcription by means of copying of DNA sequence to produce a complementary RNA. And this process leads to the translation of a genetic code.

Being a nurse brings to me a great responsibility of understanding nature of all diseases. As many of them can occur upon genetic predisposition or because of genetic mutation, understanding structure and functions of both DNA and RNA is crucial for each nurse that strives to be professional. It will enable me to analyze the origin of the disease and using my knowledge to choose the best treatment for every separate case.

Knowledge and understanding of all concepts discussed earlier have not only theoretical, practical sense, as knowledge that has no application in real life is useless. In our private life we are surrounded with antibacterial soaps and general cleaning means that can save us from infection. Prevention is the key to healthy and happy life. Popularization of such knowledge and in-time vaccination is main duties of me as a nurse.
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