This image depicts a Petri dish containing a buffered charcoal yeast extract (BCYE) agar medium, which had been inoculated with Gram-negative Francisella tularensis live vaccine strain (LVS) bacteria. F. tularensis is the pathogen responsible for causing the disease tularemia. This was the appearance of the colonial growth after 72 hours of incubation.
What is tularemia?
Tularemia, also known as rabbit fever, is a disease caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis. Tularemia is typically found in animals, especially rodents, rabbits, and hares. Tularemia is usually a rural disease and has been reported in all U.S. states except Hawaii.
How do people become infected with tularemia?
Typically, people become infected through the bite of infected insects (most commonly, ticks and deerflies), by handling infected sick or dead animals, by eating or drinking contaminated food or water, or by inhaling airborne bacteria.