Parasitic Worms Create 'Zombie' Snails

Parasitic flatworms (Leucochloridium paradoxum) attack innocent gastropods, and force the snails to feed themselves to birds - over and over. While you ponder the Prometheus-like fate of these snails, let's first talk about Toxoplasma Gondii, which infects human beings.

In a previous article (Toxoplasma Gondii Parasite Mind Control) I detailed the peculiar facts about Toxoplasma, which is found in the gut of cats. The parasite sheds eggs, which are then picked up and eaten by rats. The rats remain perfectly healthy. Or do they?

It turns out that the rat brains are subtly altered. Instead of fearing places where cats hang around, the poor rats actually come to prefer places where cats spend a lot of time. These rats are more likely to be eaten by the cats, thereby completing the lifecycle of the Toxoplasma parasite.

Human beings are also infected by the parasite; about half of the people on Earth have had an infection. Researcher Fuller Torrey noticed a number of links between Toxoplasma infection and human neurology and behavior. Read the article for details.

What Toxoplasma gondii apparently does to people is disgusting. However, it's nothing compared to the fate of poor snails. I commend the following video to your attention.


(Leucochloridium paradoxum vs. snails)

I thought that Toxoplasma forming tiny cysts in my brain and spreading throughout my nervous system was bad. As this video proves, it can always get worse.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/8/2007)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Biology ")

DNA May Contain Malware
'You were told to embed the logical pathogen.' - A. Reynolds and S. Baxter, 2016.

GMO Houseplant Cleans Your Air
Removes compounds too small to be captured by a HEPA filter.

Oil from Algae - Can It Be Done?
'We dump everything that's waste into the tanks, pump the oil off the top.' - Hal Clement, 1950.

Amazing 'Hybrid' Solar-Powered Sea Slug Does Photosynthesis
Thank goodness for Star Trek.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Purdue Pharma Ready To Profit From OxyContin Use Or Addiction Recovery
'It may be organic damage. It may be permanent. Time'll tell, and only after you are off Substance D for a long while.'

BloxVox Mutes Cellphone Convos
It's the polite thing to do, and has been the polite thing to do for about four generations.

Superfast Replicator: Volumetric Additive Manufacturing
I can't wait. Bring it on.

DNA May Contain Malware
'You were told to embed the logical pathogen.'

I Can't Resist Worm Robots
'Seen close it was not completely flexible...'

Rplate Digital License Plates Now Legal In Michigan
'Gragg's digital ink license plates ...'

Can Musk Starship Astronauts Use Magnetic Boots?
'Walking awkwardly in the magnetic boots that held him to the black mass of meteoric iron...'

Giant Dolphin Spotted On Jupiter!
'Now at last he could appreciate its real size and complexity...'

Musk's Starship An SF Fan's Dream Come True
Perfect for testing, perfect for fans!

TinyMobileRobots Are Sewer Sentinels
Every movie monster gets its start someplace.

Fishy Facial Recognition Now Possible
'Palenkis can identify random line patterns better than any other species in the universe.'

Spicy Tomatoes Created With Genetic Engineering
How about mashed potatoes and brown gravy?

Driverless Hotel Rooms Predicted In 1828
'Did you never see a moving house before?'

Yandex Self-Driving Taxi Is Very Smooth
'The big car was slowing down, its computer brain sensing an exit ahead.'

Shrimp Actually Made Of Algae Is A New Wave Food
Bring in that crop algae.

Cosplay Style Wings Could Work On Moon
'They're lovely! - titanalloy struts as light and strong as bird-bones...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.