Insect ABC's

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(Buruli Ulcer Disease)

Buruli ulcer has spread dramatically since the 1980's and is now the third most frequent microbacterial disease in humans. It can cause serious skin ulcerations, bone deformities, and disability. It is not understood how one contracts the disease exactly but it is known not to be contagious between humans. Recently, however, scientists have noticed a resurgence of Buruli ulcer close to various wetlands. They have also found that M. ulcerans can survive and multiply exclusively within the salivary glands of aquatic insects and that these insects can transfer M. ulcerans to mice with their bites. This shows a likely means for humans to become infected.

World Health Organization

Photo Courtesy of: Dermatology Online Journal