Melioidosis is an infectious disease caused by a Gram-negative bacterium, Burkholderia pseudomallei, found in soil and water. It is of public health importance in endemic areas, particularly in Thailand and northern Australia. It exists in acute and chronic forms. Symptoms may include pain in chest, bones, or joints; cough; skin infections, lung nodules and pneumonia. B. pseudomallei was previously classed as part of the Pseudomonas genus and until 1992, it was known as Pseudomonas pseudomallei. It is phylogenetically related closely to Burkholderia mallei which causes glanders, an infection primarily of horses, donkeys and mules. The name Melioidosis is derived from the Greek melis meaning 'a distemper of asses' with the suffixes -oid meaning 'similar to' and -osis meaning 'a condition', that is, a condition similar to glanders.
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