Is Yersinia Pestis A Bacterial Infection Responsible For The Deaths Of Millions Of People?

Decent Essays

Yersinia Pestis is a bacterial infection responsible for the deaths of millions of people starting in the 1300’s and still continues to infect people to this day. This bacterial strain is the basis of three very serious and potentially fatal diseases: the Bubonic plague, the Pneumonic Plague, and the septicemic Plague. The difference between the plagues is primarily the location of the infection but the symptoms also vary as well. The bubonic plague attacks the Lymphatic system whereas the Pneumonic plague focuses the respiratory system and the Septicemic plague targets the blood stream. Although the plagues alter in symptoms and means of infection, they all relate and depend on each other in some way. The bubonic plague was the largest epidemic and owes it’s success to the collaboration of the three variations, Yersinia Pestis was introduced to humans through the Bubonic version but wouldn’t have spread nearly as much if it weren’t for the airborne effects of the Pneumonic version which can infect humans without the means of other organisms such as fleas.
The Bubonic Plague (also known as the black death) is the most common of the three and first arrived in Europe in 1347, it would eventually kill millions people, totaling nearly a third of the continents population. The disease was first recorded in central Asia in 1338 and spread to the south and east by early 1346, making easy headway by hitchhiking through travelers and merchants traversing trade routes across both land

Get Access