"So, naturalists observe, a flea has smaller fleas that on him prey; and these have smaller still to bite ’em; and so proceed ad infinitum."
- Jonathan Swift

August 8, 2010

August 8 - Nybelinia surmenicola

Nybelinia surmenicola is another tapeworm parasite that infects the salmon shark, Lamna ditropis. The sharks get these parasites when they prey on either fish or squid that are serving as the intermediate hosts for this parasite. Salmon sharks are interesting creatures, themselves, in that they one of the few fishes that exhibit homeothermy, or the ability to regulate their own body temperature. These sharks live in the northern Pacific ocean. At least one case of a human infection of Nybelinia surmenicola has been reported. A Japanese woman complained of severe pain in her mouth after eating uncooked squid. Doctors removed four larval tapeworms from her tongue and pharynx.

1 comment:

  1. At the Meguro Parasitological Museum in Tokyo, the gift ahop -- in addition to the usual t-shirts and postcards -- sells a cellphone charm with a Nybelinia surmenicola embedded in clear acrylic.