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 ")

Worms Eat Plastic Now
'Slowly and inexorably, the rate of dissolution increased...' - Davis/Pedlar, 1971.

Mini-Brains In A Dish
'Cultured brains on a slab.' - Peter Watts, 1999.

NASA's Prototype Lunar Greenhouse For Mars And Moon
'In contrast to the airless desolation outside, the interior of this five-acre greenhouse was the one most desirable place to be.' - Raymond Z. Gallun, 1951.

Researchers Say 'Biohybrid Robot' - Clarke Said 'Biot'
'... The biological robots were not living creatures.' - Arthur C. Clarke, 1972.

 

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

Desktopography Makes Virtual Desktops Real
'Ender doodled on his desk, drawing contour maps of mountainous islands and then telling his desk to display them in three dimensions...'

LaWS Laser Can Take Out Rogue Drones
Looks like a weapon for the Runaway squad!

Moon Express Lunar Robot Mining: Shine On, Harvest Moon
'The bulldozer moved through the lunar strip mine... '

Liquid Body Armor For TALOS Exoskeleton
'... instantly became rigid all over when something struck it...'

Hyperloop One Video Shows It Works!
'Complete evacuation of the interior of the tubes [and] a wave that provides the new propulsive energy for the cars...'

Chairless Chair Exoskeleton By Sapetti
'Earth's scientists... devised rigid metallic clothing...'

Publishing Technologies In Science Fiction
Well, this should be enough references to start...

Russia Working On Military Exoskeletons
'Вы похожи на большую стальную гориллу...'

3D Printed Bionic Chinese Skin
Your skin is ready!

Flexup Tire Design Good For Tumblebugs
'Each spoke telescopes into five sections.'

3D Printed Graphene Aerogel - So Light!
'... light as cork and stronger than steel...'

Asteroid Deflection With DART
'This obelisk is one huge deflector mechanism...'

Translate One2One From IBM's Watson Your Communication Solution
'It then excretes into the mind of its carrier a telepathic matrix...'

News Now Philip K. Dick's Bailiwick
'A vast complex electronic organism... responsible to no one...'

Autonomous BADGER Robot Drilling Machine
'The compacted matter... makes a better tunnel lining than concrete, don't you think?'

TALOS Exoskeleton Development Proceeding
'Suited up, you look like a big steel gorilla...'

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.