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What Does Cats Have To Do With It?

Updated on September 19, 2014

T. gondii - It is Everwhere!

T. gondii Changes Our Behaviors!
T. gondii Changes Our Behaviors! | Source

There is No Cure!


50% of the world is infected. Some areas are almost 100% infected. Toxoplasmosis (toxo) is an infection caused by a single-celled parasite called Toxoplasma gondii, or also known as T. gondii. T. gondii is the third leading cause of foodborne illness resulting in death in the U.S.

There is No Cure!

It was first discovered in 1908 in a hamster looking rodent called the gundi. It remained as a curiosity until T. gondii was identified in tissues of a congenitally infected infant. T. gondii was still not recognized as a worldwide concern.

In 1957, huge flocks of sheep in New Zealand were aborting. All were infected with T. gondii. Even then, no research was done on T. gondii.

In 1970, the life cycle of T. gondii was determined to use felines (cats) as part of their reproductive phase. T. gondii must live in a cat to reproduce. Cats are the definitive hosts.

Recent discoveries of sea mammals, including whales, sea otters, claims, oysters indicate cat feces being washed into the seas. It is thought anchovies are the carriers to the Arctic…

Only recently has T. gondii been discovered to cause worldwide changes in our cultures, implicated in schizophrenia, increases car wrecks (2.5 times when infected), all motorcycle wrecks riders are infected, infected women attract males. Males become passive and a host of other behaviors.

What Does Cats Have To Do With It?

Cats get toxoplasmosis (T. gondii) from eating contaminated raw meat, birds, mice or soil. One can be infected with T. gondii from cats. However cats are not the only animals that can transmit it, they are just the only species to shed the infectious stage in their feces.

Most humans are infected with T. gondii by eating undercooked meat. One can get infected from water. Most water treatment plants do not eradicate T. gondii.

An example: A community outbreak of toxoplasmosis in western Canada prompted extensive epidemiological investigations. It was discovered felines (cats and mountain lions) were the causes. The Humpback Reservoir, identified during the investigation as the most likely source of T. gondii oocysts, supplied one of the two municipal drinking water treatment plants. T. gondii has also been discovered in wells.

There is worldwide contamination of drinking water with infectious T. gondii. There is a lack of standardized and quantitative methods for detection of T. gondii oocysts in water also limits research on the transport and fate of this pathogen through aquatic habitats.

Water treated with chlorine, ozone and ultraviolet radiation treatments on the infectivity of Toxoplasma gondii oocysts are not effective. Most sewage dumped into the ocean have T. gondii and is not eradicated. Sewage dumped into the California State Water Project with 25 million people drinking the water has T. gondii.


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