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Often misunderstood as similar things, both bacteria and viruses can cause mild to serious infections, but they are different from one another. Bacterial infections and viral infections must also be treated differently.
See the fact file below for more information on the bacteria and viruses or alternatively, you can download our 28-page Bacteria and Viruses worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
BACTERIA: BASIC INFORMATION
- Bacteria are a type of biological cell.
- Bacteria are microscopic, single-celled organisms that lack a nucleus and can thrive in diverse environments.
- Bacterial cells are generally surrounded by two protective coverings: (1) an outer cell wall and (2) an inner cell membrane.
- Bacteria can exist in soil, water, acidic hot springs, radioactive waste, and the deep biosphere of the Earth’s crust.
- Bacteria can also live in symbiotic and parasitic relationships with plants and animals.
- In humans and most animals, the largest number of bacteria exist in the gut, and a large number exist on the skin.
- Vast majority of bacteria in the body are harmless, but there are still several species of bacteria that are pathogenic and can
cause infectious diseases.
- Infectious diseases caused by bacteria include cholera, syphilis, anthrax, leprosy, and bubonic plague.
- The most common fatal bacterial diseases are respiratory infections.
- Some species of bacteria have a third protective covering.
- This is made up of polysaccharides or complex carbohydrates.
- The capsule keeps the bacterium from drying out and protects the bacterium from phagocytosis by large organisms.
- Cell Wall
- The cell wall gives the bacterium its shape and protects the bacterium from the outside environment.
- The cytoplasm, or protoplasm, is the place where the functions for cell growth, metabolism, and replication are being done.
- The cytoplasm is a gel-like matrix composed of water, enzymes, nutrients, wastes, and gases.
- Cytoplasmic Membrane
- This is a layer of phospholipids and proteins that encloses the interior of the bacterium and regulates the flow of materials in and out of the cell.
- Flagella are hairlike structures that provide a means of locomotion.
- This is a region of cytoplasm where the chromosomal deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is located.
- These are microscopic factories found in cells.
- There are three basic bacterial shapes: (1) coccus, (2) bacillus, and (3) spirillum.
- Coccus (plural: cocci) is a round cell, sometimes slightly flattened when they are adjacent to one another.
- Bacillus (plural: bacilli) is a rod-shaped bacteria.
- Spirillum (plural: spirilla) is a curved bacteria that can range from a gently curved shape to a corkscrew-like spiral
- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest threats to global health.
- Antibiotics are medicines used to prevent and treat bacterial infections.
- Antibiotic resistance happens when bacteria change their responses to the use of antibiotics.
- Antibiotic resistance occurs naturally, but it is accelerated by the misuse and overuse of antibiotics, poor infection prevention, and poor control.
VIRUSES: BASIC INFORMATION
- Viruses are small infectious agents that replicate inside living cells of an organism.
- Viruses were first discovered after the development of a porcelain filter.
- Viruses are acellular, meaning they are entities that do not have a cellular structure.
- Viruses may use either DNA or RNA.
- DNA viruses cause human diseases, such as chickenpox, herpes, and hepatitis B.
- RNA viruses mutate more rapidly and can cause human diseases, such as hepatitis C, measles, and rabies.
- Viruses can infect all types of life forms, from animals and plants to microorganisms, including bacteria and archaea.
- Viruses exist in the form of independent particles, or virions, consisting of: (1) the genetic material, (2) a protein coat, (3) an outside envelope.
- Viruses can be transmitted through disease-bearing organisms known as vectors.
- Influenza viruses are spread by coughing and sneezing.
- Viral infections provoke an immune response that usually eliminates the infecting virus.
- Immune responses can be produced by vaccines.
- Some viruses evade the immune responses and result in chronic infections.
- Several antiviral drugs have been developed to counter these infections.
- Viruses display a wide diversity of shapes and sizes, or morphologies.
Generally, viruses are smaller than bacteria.
- Most viruses have a diameter ranging between 20 to 300 nanometers.
- A complete virion consists of nucleic acid surrounded by the capsid.
- The capsid is a protective coat of protein.
- Antiviral resistance pertains to the decrease in susceptibility of a virus to an antiviral drug.
- When a virus changes in the active site where an antiviral drug works, the virus then shows reduced susceptibility to the antiviral drug.
- Antiviral drugs may not work against viruses with reduced susceptibility.
Bacteria and Viruses Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the bacteria and viruses across 28 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Bacteria and Viruses worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the bacteria and viruses which can cause mild to serious infections, but they are different from one another. Bacterial infections and viral infections must also be treated differently.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Bacteria and Viruses Facts
- Do You Know More?
- Is It?
- Know Your Bacteria
- Know Your Influenza Virus
- Bacterium or Virus?
- Compare Us
- Resistance How?
- Should I?
- Mix N Match
- Not Bad
- Naming DNA Viruses
- Sharing Time
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Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.