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Parasitol Res. 2012 Feb;110(2):503-8. doi: 10.1007/s00436-011-2672-1. Epub 2011 Oct 8.

The roots of evil: the amazing history of trichinellosis and Trichinella parasites.

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1
Department of Infectious Diseases, Discipline of Parasitology, Victor Babes University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 2 Eftimie Murgu Sq, 300041 Timisoara, Romania. raul.neghina@gmail.com

Abstract

This review aims to investigate, from a historical point of view, the roots of the Trichinella pathogens and the disease they produce, beginning from the times first recorded in the Bible and continuing until the scientific mysteries of the pathogen were finally unveiled. Our journey sheds light on "strange" epidemics developing before the discovery of the parasite and bearing a clinical similitude to trichinellosis; it follows the controversies that erupted after the nineteenth century discovery of the parasite and the subsequent official outbreaks, and then examines the pioneering methods used for its visualization. Finally, it tries to reveal the possible relationship of trichinellosis with the arts. Furthermore, it seems that the saga of the helminth, "destined to remain with us, both in nature and in the laboratory," will continue to haunt and fascinate scientists from both developing and developed countries, as they try to answer new questions about the parasite's "evil" nature.

PMID:
21984371
DOI:
10.1007/s00436-011-2672-1
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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