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Featuring the infamous Sharkman originally from the He shares with us in how he fought his strongyloids hyper infection while trying to stay alive. After numerous failed attempts with the medical system his mother decided to intervene with her thorough knowledge as a renown veterinarian and saved him with veterinarian medications. Very interesting show tonight.


Garlic May Help Millions Suffering From Schistosomiasis

Research suggests early administration of garlic oil may weaken the parasitic worm

Although Schistosoma masoni may not be a household name in the United States, in many areas of the world, the mere mention of this helminth worm, also called a blood fluke, can lead to concern. Some 240 million people are affected worldwide and upwards of one-tenth of the global population is at risk of infection. This species, along with several other relatives, is responsible for a variety of illnesses ranging from rash to organ damage to paralysis.

There is no vaccine for Schistosoma and as a result, infected individuals rely on drugs such as praziquantel. However, resistance to the drug has been seen and appears to be spreading not unlike antibiotic resistance in bacteria. This suggests there is a need to examine other alternatives in order to fight infection.

While there have been some successes in the lab, none have made it past the rigor of clinical tests. The reasons have varied from lack of tolerance in individuals to sometimes severe adverse events. But the chemical route is the only one available. An examination of naturally derived products known to be safe could offer alternatives to the more traditional pharmacological route.

For millennia, humans have relied on plants to provide relief from infections. Although most have been sidelined due to a lack of efficacy or simply because modern medicine offered a better path, they are still considered viable options. In light of the onslaught of resistance, some have decided to look back in the hopes of finding a cure for the future.

In terms of Schistosoma, a group of Egyptian researchers have recently discovered a possible path. For them, a historical clue provided the basis to determine the anti-helminth activity of one of the world’s most prominent plants, garlic. The results revealed our ancestors may have been on the right track to help the millions suffering today.

The experiments were performed in mice to get a better handle on the effects of orally administered garlic oil on the worms. The animals were divided into several groups including control, garlic control, untreated infection, and garlic-treated infection at varying times during the course of a six-week period. Infection was done through the skin so it mimicked how many humans get the disease.

When the results came back, the researchers were left with a rather strange predicament. The garlic did seem to work in reducing the level of infection yet there was a huge caveat. Only groups that received garlic in the first week of infection saw any improvement. If garlic was given any later, there was little effect. To the researchers, this difference in effect meant the treatment was most likely not affecting the worms directly. Instead, they believed the actual target of the garlic was the immune system.

It’s been known for several years garlic has both anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidantproperties. It’s also known Schistosoma infection increases inflammation particularly in the first few days of infection. Based on this knowledge, the authors felt the therapeutic activity had to do with blocking inflammation.

When they tested the mice for biomarkers of inflammation, they found animals receiving garlic oil in the first stages of infection had far fewer signs of the condition. However, those fed garlic after two and four weeks did not have this benefit. They were just as inflamed as the infected controls. This result clearly showed the importance of inflammation in the early stages of infection and how controlling that with garlic could help to remediate the infection.

For the authors, the effect of garlic wasn’t the highlight of the study. Garlic was essentially doing what it had always been known to do. The real value of this study came in observing the positive effects of anti-inflammatory activity in the first few days of infection. The worms were rendered weaker and more susceptible to immunological clearance. Although there was no subsequent testing with praziquantel, the weakened state of the helminths could suggest treatment may also be far more effective.

Although these experiments were done in mice and not in humans, the potential to develop clinical trials is clearly apparent. If indeed the anti-inflammatory effect of garlic can be shown to help reduce Schistosoma infection in humans, it may offer a valid route forward. Garlic oil may be used as a prophylaxis in areas where the infection is endemic. It may also be used as a means of early treatment in cases where infection is suspected. Although this may not entirely prevent people from coming down with the disease, it may minimize the need for praziquantel and reduce the spread of resistance.

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It’s parasitic wasps all the way down


It’s wasps all the way down. No, scratch that—it’s parasitic wasps all the way down. It’s manipulative parasitic wasps all the way down.

In yet another example of why we should be glad humans have basically escaped the food chain, a group of scientists at Rice University have published two papers describing a new species of wasp that eats its host after using it for personal (or species-wide) gain. The first paper lays out the waspy basics: it lives inside sand live oak branches, it’s part of a large parasitic wasp family, and it lives in southern states (at least as far as scientists know). It was the second paper that documented the creepy lives these wasps live.

Kelly Weinersmith and Scott Egan, two of the leading researchers on this project, first found the hyper-manipulative wasps by studying the slightly-less-manipulative crypt gall wasp. “Crypt” in this case doesn’t mean they live alongside dead human bodies, it means that they form their own crypts—except their crypts help them sustain life.

Larval Bassettia pallida (as the crypt gall wasp is more scientifically known) manipulate sand live oaks to forms little crypts inside developing stems. Safe in their hidey-holes, the gall wasps develop into adults and dig holes through the branch to emerge triumphant at a later date. But not if the crypt-keeper wasp has anything to say about it.

Crypt gall wasp

A CRYPT GALL WASP Sure, he’s not as flashy as the other guy, but that doesn’t mean he deserves to have his body used as a fleshy tunnel. Andrew Forbes/University of Iowa


Euderus set has to take much the same path in life as crypt gall wasps—they need a safe place to hide while they develop into adults. But rather than piggy-back directly off of the lifecycle of a sand live oak, crypt-keeper wasps manipulate the other wasps that have already done so. The crypt-keepers lay eggs alongside gall wasp larva such that the gall wasps unknowingly trap themselves inside a crypt with their soon-to-be murderers. The two insects develop alongside one another.

When the gall wasp is ready to emerge, the crypt-keeper wasp pounces. It manipulates the gall wasp into digging a hole slightly too small for it to fit through, such that the gall wasp gets trapped partway through the branch. The crypt-keeper wasp has just turned its host into a fleshy plug that it can eat through to escape. Left to their own devices, crypt-keeper wasps often get trapped inside crypts themselves—they’re three times more likely to die there without the digging help from their gall wasp prey.

It’s only fitting that Weinersmith and Egan named the wasp Euderus set after the Egyptian god Set, who (according to myth) trapped his brother in a crypt and dismembered him. And there may be a whole other layer of devious parasitism left to uncover. Some of the crypts also contained fairy wasps—even tinier parasites that sometimes prey on the crypt-keeper’s family members—so there could be three manipulative parasites in play here. And you thought your family was bad.

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@VP Remove these #PARASITES FROM OUR COUNTRY Punish all the material supporters of #IllegalImmigrants

Ancient Roman 🏛️ Poop 💩 Shows Rich And Poor Were Infected By Different Parasites 🐛 via @forbes… #roman #archaeology #parasites #poop #feces