Parasites on the Brain

February 9, 2006 | Books I Read, Science | By: Mark VandeWettering

Just in case you didn’t have enough to worry about on this fine Thursday, check out this interesting article:

Damn Interesting » Parasites on the Brain

Toxoplasma gondii may be the most prevalent human parasite. As many as 50% of humans worldwide, and up to 80% in urban areas, have been infected with it at some time in their lives. An estimated 60 million people in the US have active cases at any given time. It’s a single celled parasite whose favored host is cats. However it can infect and live in a host of other creatures including rats and humans. Most infected people, and most infected rats, show no particular signs of illness when infected. They continue on with their daily life and work completely unaware they’ve been parasitized. But they may not be as unaffected as they seem.

You could also pick up the book  Parasite Rex by Carl Zimmer for more fun parasite information.  It’s part of my bookshelf that justifies my increasing paranoia about squishy things in biology.

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Comments

Comment from Janet Fidler
Time 8/9/2009 at 12:36 am

The parasite has it’s own trademark? That’s interesting. What does it retail for????

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