Beware the Body Snatchers
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- an organism that lives in or on another organism (its host) and benefits by
- deriving nutrients at the host's expense.
But not so with a rate infected by a mind-controlling parasite called Toxoplasma gondii.
- (also host cell) a living cell in
- which a virus multiplies.
Like outer parasites, it needs an organism, or host, to call home.
make an exact copy of; reproduce
Only there can it become an adult and replicate, ensuring the survival of its species.
control or play upon unfairly
There, the tiny organism manipulates its host.
be or remain hidden so as to wait in ambush for someone or something.
As a result, infected rats actually seek out places where cats are lurking.
run with quick light steps, esp. through fear or excitement
If an unlucky rodent scampers among the egg-laden feces and ingests the eggs, the entire life cycle of T. gondii will play out again.
so delicate or precise as to be difficult to analyze or describe
- Studies have found that in serious cases,
- infected people show subtle changes in how they act.
- an experience involving the apparent perception of something not present.
- Perception of objects with no reality.
- Some people have slowed reaction times and, in extreme cases, individuals may show signs if schizophrenia, a psychiatric condition that cause hallucinations and
- harm the thinking process.
to infect by contact or association
- To reduce the risk of contacting T.gondii, scientists recommend cooking meat fully
- before eating it, and washing your hands after touching soil, sand, or kitty
- litter that could be contaminated by infected cat droppings.
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