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Parasites and the evolution of primate culture

Study examines ‘costs’ of innovation, learning from others
Wed, 2014-12-03 10:15

Learning from others and innovation have undoubtedly helped advance civilization. But these behaviours can carry costs as well as benefits. And a new study by an international team of evolutionary biologists sheds light on how one particular cost – increased exposure to parasites – may affect cultural evolution in non-human primates.

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Contact: Chris Chipello
Organization: Media Relations Office
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Office Phone: 514-398-4201
Source Site: /newsroom

Target identified for a public health risk parasite

Thu, 2013-11-28 12:21

In the developing world, Cryptosporidium parvum has long been the scourge of freshwater. A decade ago, it announced its presence in the United States, infecting over 400,000 people – the largest waterborne-disease outbreak in the county’s history. Its rapid ability to spread, combined with an incredible resilience to water decontamination techniques, such as chlorination, led the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United Sates to add C. parvum to its list of public bioterrorism agents. Currently, there are no reliable treatments for cryptosporidiosis, the disease caused by C. parvum, but that may be about to change with the identification of a target molecule by investigators at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC).

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Contact: Julie Robert
Organization: McGill University Health Centre
Office Phone: 514 934-1934 ext. 71381
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Source Site: /newsroom
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