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Re: uh, dinosaur!
don ohmes writes:
"The parasite Toxoplasma gondii uses a remarkable trick to spread
from rodents to cats: It alters the brains of infected rats and mice so
that they become attracted to?rather than repelled by?the
scent of their predators."
These same parasites also infect humans - in fact a recent study suggested
there was a (very) rough correlation between the level of violence in
different countries around the world, and the percentage of people in those
countries infected with the brain parasite.
The study seemed to assume that the parasite made the host 'bolder' by
repressing fear in general. However if the parasite only effects a very
specific part of rodent brains and only makes them less wary of the smell of
cats' urine (and nothing else), then I doubt that the correlation between
infection rates and levels of cultural violence in humans is all that good.
Unless most wars are started by cat lovers verses cat haters. :)
GIS / Archaeologist http://www.geocities.com/dannsdinosaurs
Melbourne, Australia http://heretichides.soffiles.com