Are diseases caused by protists infectious?
The pathogenic protists that infect humans are all single-celled organisms, formerly called ‘protozoa’. They are responsible for a range of diseases, including: dysentery (bloody diarrhoea) caused by waterborne protists similar to the amoebae [amm-ee-bee] commonly found in freshwater ponds.
Do most protists cause disease?
Protists and fungi may seem defenseless, but they can be deadly. Both are important causes of disease and death in other living things—including humans. Most protist diseases in humans are caused by animal-like protists, or protozoa. Protozoa make us sick when they become human parasites.
How are protists harmful to humans?
Most harmful protists are classified as animal-like protists that act as parasites, or organisms that benefit from causing harm to other organisms. Malaria is caused by plasmodium, a protist that uses mosquitoes as an intermittent host before infecting humans.
What protists are parasites?
Parasites are drawn from many groups of protists. The adaptive form varies from amoeboid (Entamoeba), amoebo-flagellate (Naegleria), flagellated (trypanosomes), ciliates (Balantidium), to sporozoa (Plasmodium). Some groups have diversified as parasites (Microsporidia, Apicomplexa).