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Latest Parasitism Stories

2011-01-04 14:02:00

Biologist shows why some strains are more dangerous than others About one-third of the human population is infected with a parasite called Toxoplasma gondii, but most of them don't know it. Though Toxoplasma causes no symptoms in most people, it can be harmful to individuals with suppressed immune systems, and to fetuses whose mothers become infected during pregnancy. Toxoplasma spores are found in dirt and easily infect farm animals such as cows, sheep, pigs and chickens. Humans can be...

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2010-12-29 09:38:09

By Michael Purdy, Washington University in St. Louis Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have learned why changes in a single gene, ROP18, contribute substantially to dangerous forms of the parasite Toxoplasma gondii. The answer has likely moved science a step closer to new ways to beat Toxoplasma and many other parasites. In a study published in Cell Host & Microbe, scientists show that the ROP18 protein disables host cell proteins that would otherwise...

2010-12-13 13:48:43

Research presented at American Society of Cell Biology's 50th annual meeting in Philadelphia The protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii and the pathogenic bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis exemplify convergent evolution, the development of a similar biological trait in unrelated lineages, according to research presented today at the American Society of Cell Biology's 50th Annual Meeting in Philadelphia. The biological trait shared by the two pathogens is their modus operandi "“ how they...

2010-10-20 13:50:32

How parasites use different life-history strategies to beat our immune systems may also provide insight into the control of diseases, such as elephantiasis and river blindness, which afflict some of the world's poorest communities in tropical South-East Asia, Africa and Central America. The research is due to be published next week in the online, open-access journal PLoS Biology. The study, led by Dr Simon Babayan of the University of Edinburgh, showed using a mouse model of parasite...

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2010-10-19 11:04:02

Relationships among organisms, or mutualisms, might be more important to global ecosystem health than previously thought, argues a research team involving UA professor Judith Bronstein Mutually beneficial partnerships among species may play highly important but vastly underrecognized roles in keeping the Earth's ecosystems running, a group of evolutionary biologists suggests in a study. The authors present evidence that human impacts may be forcing these mutualist systems down unprecedented...

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2010-09-29 09:37:10

Study finds higher temperatures, precipitation levels mean greater harm by parasites to developing chicks A Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) study on nesting birds in Argentina finds that increasing temperatures and rainfall"”both side effects of climate change in some parts of the world"”could be bad for birds of South America, but great for some of their parasites which thrive in warmer and wetter conditions. The study, which looked at nesting forest birds in Santa Fe,...

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2010-09-23 06:25:00

The parasite that causes the most deadly strain of malaria in humans appears to have originally crossed the species barrier from gorillas, researchers reported on Wednesday. The scientists analyzed DNA from the droppings of some 3,000 gorillas, chimpanzees and bonobos, and found that the strain of malaria parasite most common in humans is virtually identical to one of many strains that infect gorillas. Beatrice Hahn of the University of Alabama at Birmingham and colleagues used the droppings...

2010-09-22 14:17:31

The antibacterial ingredient in some soaps, toothpastes, odor-fighting socks, and even computer keyboards is pointing scientists toward a long-sought new treatment for a parasitic disease that affects almost two billion people. Their report on how triclosan became the guiding light for future development of drugs for toxoplasmosis appears in ACS' monthly Journal of Medicinal Chemistry. In the study, Rima McLeod and colleagues point out that toxoplasmosis is one of the world's most common...

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2010-07-11 08:09:12

Evolutionary timeline determined for malaria parasites in mammals, birds, reptiles Scientists have determined the evolutionary timeline for the microscopic parasites that cause one of the world's most widespread infectious diseases: malaria. Having an understanding of the origins of the lineages of such pathogens, or disease-causing organisms, is fundamental to understanding emerging diseases, according to the researchers. The origin of malaria in humans has been dated to as recent as 10,000...

2010-06-23 01:34:18

The limited immune response in the eyes of freshwater fishes has created a great home for parasites, according to research published online in the journal Molecular Ecology. The study provides a lens into the evolutionary world of the larval flukes that parasitize Canadian fish. "Canada probably has the best studied freshwater fish parasites in the world, so we were amazed when we found four times more species of flukes in a few fishes from the St. Lawrence than were previously known in all...


Latest Parasitism Reference Libraries

Lancet Liver Fluke, Dicrocoelium dendriticum
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The lancet liver fluke (Dicrocoelium dendriticum) is a parasitic worm that is classified within the Platyhelminthes phylum. It is thought to be native to over thirty countries including Switzerland, Spain, Germany, Iran, China, Vietnam, Japan, Ghana, and Nigeria, among many other areas. It is also found in South and North America and in Australia. It is typically found in cattle or other grazing species, so it is thought to prefer a habitat that supports these species. It is similar in...

Profilicollis
2014-01-05 00:00:00

Profilicollis is a genus of acanthocephalan parasites that are found in crustaceans and shorebirds. Profilicollis parasites use decapod crustaceans as intermediate hosts and species of shorebirds as definitive hosts. The parasite first develops in mole crabs of North and South America. After it infects a mole crab, it becomes dormant until the crab is eaten by a suitable bird, such as a Surf scoter or Herring Gull. Once the parasite has passed through the stomach of the bird, it develops...

Moniliformis moniliformis
2014-01-05 00:00:00

Moniliformis moniliformis is a species of acanthocephalan parasite that can infect humans, though it rarely does. Human infections have been reported in the United States, Iran, Iraq, and Nigeria. It has been found in rats all over the world, and usually is found in cats, dogs and, in Poland, red foxes. Intermediate hosts are usually beetles and cockroaches. This parasite, like other acanthocephalans, does not have a digestive tract. It absorbs nutrients through the tegument (external...

Giant Thorny-headed Worm, Macracanthorhynchus hirudinaceus
2014-01-05 00:00:00

The Giant Thorny-headed Worm (Macracanthorhynchus hirudinaceus) is a species of acanthocephalan parasite found in the intestines of pigs and other hoofed animals, and can occasionally appear in humans and dogs. The eggs of this parasite are usually found in scarabaeoid or hydrophilid beetles and other similar insects. Worms of this species range in size from less than four-hundredths of an inch to over 15 inches. It causes enteritis, gastritis or peritonitis in affected hosts. While it...

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Word of the Day
bodacious
  • Remarkable; prodigious.
  • Audacious; gutsy.
  • Completely; extremely.
  • Audaciously; boldly.
  • Impressively great in size; enormous; extraordinary.
This word is probably from the dialectal 'boldacious,' a blend of 'bold' and 'audacious.'
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