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The term microbiology has been derived from the Greek words mikro and logia. The former means small while the latter means study. The study of organisms microscopic in size is called microbiology. The particles and organisms studied in microbiology consist of particles made up of a single cell and those that consist of multiple number of cells (Ridgway, 2008). These include fungi, viruses and prokaryotes. In very broad terms, it can be studied that it is the study of immune system. The immune system is often disturbed by the pathogenic microbes which is why most people study microbiology and immunology together. There are many other related terms that are studied under microbiology (Pommerville, 2010).
Branches of microbiology
There are two main branches of microbiology. These are pure microbiology and applied microbiology. The pure microbiology consists of the study of Taxonomic arrangement, Integrative arrangement and others. Applied microbiology, on the other hand, is the study of Medical Microbiology, Food Microbiology, Environmental Microbiology, and Agricultural Microbiology. The medical microbiology is the study of bacteria aimed at prevention of disease. This has led to not only the prevention of many diseases but also the diagnosis of several others (James, 2012). There are germs all around. They are there in water, food, and environment. These create poison around us that can be hazardous for human health.
Importance of microbiology
The importance of microbiology must be understood from the fact that fungi and germs affect human health as well as the environment around us. There are tens of thousands of microbes inside the human body. This humungous quantity makes it a giant organism for study. For instance, it was only because of the advancements made in the field of microbiology that people have been advised to wash their hands at least thrice a day and brush their teeth at least twice. This conventional wisdom was something that people of the past did not know of . In addition, it has been discovered that al microbes are not harmful for human health. There are certain microbes that are actually beneficial in subtle ways (Pommerville, 2010).
In addition, there are various industrial applications of microbiology. It is increasing being used by scientists in landfills, treatment plants for wastewater management and water purification. Microbiology is used to break down food items into microscopic particles which are used in fertilizers. They are also used in certain types of decompositions (Ridgway, 2008). The wisdom from the study of bacteria and fungi is used to create weapons for war. Dumping certain germs in drinking water can make the water poisonous and cause massive deaths of the enemy. This is one of the most innovative ways of killing.
Current challenges faced by contemporary microbiologists
Contemporary microbiologists are faced with many issues in the field of research. For instance, one of the growing concerns at the time is the onset of chlamydial infections which have become very common. Chlamydial causes Trachoma which causes blindness. This is very common in the least developed countries across the ...