Select one bacterial, one fungal, and one viral pathogen capable of producing meningitis in humans.

Bacterial: Neisseria meningitidis

Fungal: Cryptococcus neoformans

Viral: Epstein-Barr virus

Describe the general characteristics and structure of each pathogen.

Neisseria meningitidis: parasitic, aerobic, Gram-negative, non-endospore forming, nonmotile, coccal bacterium (Devoe 1982,-page 162).

Cryptococcus neoformans: grows as a yeast, unicellular, replicates by budding, makes hyphae during mating, eventually creates basidospores (Heitman 2011).

Epstein-Barr virus: mature particle has diameter of 120 nm to 180 nm; has protein capsid, embedded with glycoproteins (Odumade 2011).

Describe in detail the pathogenic process for each pathogen. (How does the microbe produce meningitis?)

Neisseria meningitidis: Human infection begins with inhalation, attaching itself to the epithelial cells. Bacteria then passes the mucosal barrier and enters the bloodstream (Todar 2007).

Cryptococcus neoformans: Spores are inhaled by human beings. Infection can then spread throughout the body, most particularly the central nervous system (McClelland 2007,-page 131)....
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