- The Loom
Sickness All Around
I’ve got two stories in tomorrow’s New York Times about getting sick.
One is about malaria. I’ve always been fascinated by how parasites can manipulate their hosts for their own ends, and much of my book Parasite Rex is dedicated to explaining how this creepy remote control works. I’ve come across many new examples from time to time. Now a new study shows that the parasite that causes malaria can alter us humans to turn us into good mosquito bait. As with most stories about life, this one is ultimately about evolutionin this case, how parasites repeatedly have evolved ways to boost their own reproductive success by manipulating hosts like us.
I’ve never gotten malaria (knock on wood), but