Hi, I have an assignment set, and I'm really stuck on one of the questions.
It is the following: Define the term pathogen and classify the different types of pathogens that can cause infectious disease.
I am really struggling on what to write, for the definition of a pathogen i have said that it is a microorganism which causes disease.
However I am confused on the classification part, what does this actually mean?
I believe protoctistae can also be pathogens. Malaria is caused by the Plasmodium protist if I can recall correctly.
But for certain, if I am wrong, protoctistae can be pathogens.
I'd simply state a pathogen as a disease causing organism; or as an organism with the potential to cause disease.
There are 5 main categories you should be aware of and mention: Bacteria, Viruses, Fungi, Protozoan Parasites, Helminths (parasitic worms). I don't know what level this is, however that should be enough coverage for any level below university. If you want to show off, you can discuss less common pathogen types such as prions, satellite viruses and viriods (specific to flowering plants).