Mice Infected With Microscopic Parasite can Permanently Lose Their Innate Fear of Cats

by Bidita Debnath on  September 23, 2013 at 11:03 PM Research News
RSS Email Print This Page Comment
Mice can permanently lose their innate fear of cats after they are infected with a microscopic parasite, find researchers.

The single-celled Toxoplasma gondii parasite is already known to inhibit their hard-wired fear of cats.
 Mice Infected With Microscopic Parasite can Permanently Lose Their Innate Fear of Cats
Mice Infected With Microscopic Parasite can Permanently Lose Their Innate Fear of Cats
Advertisement

But even after they were cleared of the infection, mice no longer reacted with fear to a bobcat's urine, the BBC reported.

Advertisement
The team said that the infection could cause a permanent change to their brains.

Wendy Ingram and colleagues at the University of California, Berkeley, measured how mice reacted to a bobcat's urine.

Cats typically mark their territory with urine, which helps mice detect and avoid an area in which predators might lurk.

Those that remained uninfected with Toxoplasma gondii showed an aversion to the urine, whereas those that were infected walked freely around the test area.

The research is published in the journal Plos One.

Source: ANI
Advertisement

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted
I agree to the terms and conditions

More News on:

Tapeworm Infections Trypanosomiasis Xenophobia 
Advertisement

News A - Z

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

News Search

Medindia Newsletters

Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Advertisement

Advertisement
Advertisement

Stay Connected

  • Available on the Android Market
  • Available on the App Store

Facebook

News Category

News Archive