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Causative Agents
The tables below list several common source and host-to-host epidemics, the causative agent (followed by V for virus, B for bacteria, and P for protozoa), sources of infection, and the reservoirs of the infection. Current knowledge tells us that humans are the only reservoirs for sexually transmitted diseases.

Common Source Epidemic Diseases
Disease Causative Agent Infection Sources Reservoirs
Anthrax Bacillus anthracis (B) Milk or meat from infected animals Cattle, swine, goats, sheep, horses
Bacillary Dysentery Shigella dysenteriae (B) Fecal contamination of food and water Humans
Botulism Clostridium botulinum (B) Soil-contaminated food Soil
Brucellosis Brucella melitensis (B) Milk or meat from infected animals Cattle, swine, goats, sheep, horses
Cholera Vibrio cholerae (B) Fecal contamination of food and water Humans
Giardiasis Giardia spp. (P) Fecal contamination of water Wild mammals
Hepatitis Hepatitis A,B,C,D,E (V) Infected humans Humans
Paratyphoid Salmonella paratyphi (B) Fecal contamination of food and water Humans
Typhoid Fever Salmonella typhi (B) Fecal contamination of food and water Humans

Host-to-host Epidemics
Disease Causative Agent Infection Sources Reservoirs
Respiratory Diseases
Diphtheria Corynebacterium diphtheriae (B) Human cases and carriers; infected food and fomites Humans
Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome Hantavirus (V) Inhalation of contaminated fecal material Rodents
Meningicoccal meningitis Neisseria meningitidis (B) Human cases and carriers Humans
Pneumonococcal pneumonia Streptococcus pneumoniae (B) Human carriers Humans
Tuberculosis Mycobacterium tuberculosis (B) Sputum from human cases; contaminated milk Humans, cattle
Whooping cough Bordetella pertussis (B) Human cases Humans
German measles Rubella virus (V) Human cases Humans
Influenza Influenza virus (V) Human cases Humans, animals
Measles Measles virus (V) Human cases Humans
Sexually transmitted diseases
HIV-Disease HIV (V) Infected body fluids, blood, semen, etc. Humans
Chlamydia Chlamydia trachomatis (B) Urethral, vaginal, and anal secretions Humans
Gonorrhea Neisseria gonorrheae (B) Urethral and vaginal secretions Humans
Syphilis Treponema pallidum (B) Infected exudate or blood Humans
Trichomoniasis Trichomonas vaginalis (P) Urethral, vaginal, prostate secretions Humans
Vector-borne diseases
Epidemic typhus Rickettsia prowazekii (B) Bite by infected louse Humans, lice
Lyme disease Borrelia burgdorferi (B) Bite from infected tick Rodents, deer, ticks
Malaria Plasmodium spp. (P) Bite from infected Anopheles mosquito Humans, mosquitoes
Plague Yersinia pestis (B) Bite by infected flea Wild rodents
Rocky Mountain spotted Fever Rickettsia rickettsii (B) Bite by infected tick Ticks, rabbits, mice
Direct-contact diseases
Psittacosis Chlamydia psittaci (B) Contact with birds or bird excrement Wild and domestic birds
Rabies Rabies virus (V) Bite by carnivore Wild and domestic carnivores
Tularemia Franciscella tularensis (B) Contact with rabbits Rabbits
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