© 2011 Josh pipes

How it will happen. Part I

As anyone who reads this blog probably knows, there is no future I look more keenly towards than one filled with zombies.  Zombies have invaded pop culture, the pages of comic books, movie screens, and the hopes and dreams of a generation, and while I certainly have no intention of creating a compendium of zombie lore; leave that to Max Brooks, I would like to tackle the one aspect of Z-day that appeals to me most: How it will happen.

First, it’s important that we make the distinction here between the two prevalent types of Zombies with which we are obsessed, Magic zombies and Science Zombies.   Magic zombies are the ‘undead’ ones that rise from the grave (or other place of rest) for whatever nefarious purpose e.g. to feast upon the [soul] of the living, either as a result of some celestial decree, infernal tampering, black arts, or ancient curse.  Science zombies are those pseudo-dead, single minded, pursuers of brains and flesh that often rise from death-like states as a result of the transformative effects of a virus, parasite, vicious bacterial infection, or chemical intoxicant (consider this an umbrella that also covers genetic modification). Today, we are going to be focusing on…

SCIENCE ZOMBIE: Infected by Parasites

First, I’d like to draw your attention Cordyceps, the parasitic fungus.  Pay close attention; this very simple organism is able to effectively ‘zombify’ a more complex organism.

Of course, that’s just ants, right?  No threat to humans… Only, what if the Cordyceps fungus found a way to integrate itself into the human diet the way that it has involved itself in the insect food web?  We’re too smart for that, huh? Can’t be outwitted by a little mindless fungus?  Well, I draw your attention to exhibit B:


Turns out, that this enterprising little fungus has already found a way to ingratiate itself in our systems…

http://www.kalahealth.com/cordyceps.htm As we ingest it, it is only a matter of time before we too succumb to it’s zombifying ways…

Next installment, we’ll meet the Liver Fluke.

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