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Leprosy, sometimes known as Hansen's disease, is an infectious disease caused by infection by Mycobacterium leprae, an aerobic, acid fast, rod-shaped mycobacterium. The modern name of the disease comes from the discoverer of Mycobacterium leprae, Gerhard Armauer Hansen. Sufferers from Hansen's disease have generally been called lepers, although this term is falling into disuse both from the diminishing number of leprosy patients and from pressure to avoid the demeaning connotations of the term. Also, this term can lead to public misunderstanding because the terms leprosy and leper are used in the Bible to describe a wide range of incurable skin conditions.

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