infection vs. infestation

Eric Grunden grunden at
Fri Nov 7 11:14:44 EST 1997

Lelon R Bulluck Iii wrote:
> As a student of Plant Pathology in America, I was taught (and believe)
> that infestation refers to occupying a non-living medium, (i.e. soil,
> skin, dead root tissue, inside intestinal tract.....[snip]

I don't think I agree with this reasoning. I'm not sure why,
but it just doesn't seem right.

Also, how are skin and intestinal tract non-living?  

> The next obvious question is:  What is the difference between a parasite
> and a pathogen?


I've always felt that "pathogen" derives its origin from "pathos",
which refers to death. So, to me, a true pathogen ultimately
facilitates death of the host, while a parasite may or may not.

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