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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 7/31/13

Mad enough To Kill - Part Three - The Disease Is Revealed

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THE VIOLENCE IN THIS NATION IS STILL GROWING UNCONTROLLABLY! Before I got off-track in Part Two, I was about to reveal some of the reasons that violence may be rocketing in this nation. Our scientists are working overtime attempting to understand and form a hypothesis as to why so many people are going off the deep end and I believe that we have some solid, scientific answers. I ran this by my personal physician and he was troubled and stated that even though people everywhere are seeking answers to this increasing danger to our fellow citizens, there are times when the answer is so obvious that it is overlooked and ignored and once in a while a layman stumbles upon one of the right answers. For the sake of my beloved country, I hope that I am one of those lucky stiffs that found an answer that came to me quite by accident and my 17-year-old niece thankfully remembered exactly what the disease is that is afflicting people throughout the entire global community. The science is solid and when I state what it is that may be causing these horrible shooting sprees and uncontrollable violence, please don't stop reading until you examine the scientific evidence that indicates this disease is far worse than any of us could have possibly imagined.

The name of the disease is Toxoplasmosis. This is where I need you to hang in there with me until I make the case as to why this disease has the ability, potential, and scientific evidence to affect million, or in reality, hundreds of millions throughout the global community. Toxoplasmosis has been around for a very long time. And guess which one of the most common animals in the world is carrying this disease that has infected approximately half of the entire world's population? The common house-cat. Before you fall off your chair in a fit of laughter, please examine just how dangerous this disease can be:

Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic disease caused by the protozoan Toxoplasma gondii.[1] The parasite infects most genera of warm-blooded animals, including humans, but the primary host is the felid (cat) family. Animals are infected by eating infected meat, by ingestion of feces of a cat that has itself recently been infected, and by transmission from mother to fetus. Cats are the primary source of infection to human hosts, although contact with raw meat, especially pork, is a more significant source of human infections in some countries. Fecal contamination of hands is a significant risk factor.[2]

Nicolle and Manceaux first described the organism in 1908, after they observed the parasites in the blood, spleen, and liver of a North African rodent, Ctenodactylus gondii. The parasite was named Toxoplasma (arclike form) gondii (after the rodent) in 1909. In 1923, Janku reported parasitic cysts in the retina of an infant who had hydrocephalus, seizures, and unilateral microphthalmia. Wolf, Cowan, and Paige (1937--1939) determined these findings represented the syndrome of severe congenital T. gondii infection.[2]

Up to a third of the world's human population is estimated to carry a Toxoplasma infection.[3][4] The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes the overall seroprevalence in the United States as determined with specimens collected by the National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey (NHANES) between 1999 and 2004 was found to be 10.8%, with seroprevalence among women of childbearing age (15 to 44 years) 11%.[5] Another study placed seroprevalence in the US at 22.5%.[4] The same study claimed a seroprevalence of 75% in El Salvador.[4] Official assessment in Great Britain places the number of infections at about 350,000 a year.[6]

During the first few weeks after exposure, the infection typically causes a mild, flu-like illness or no illness. Thereafter, the parasite rarely causes any physical symptoms in otherwise healthy adults. However, those with weakened immune systems, such as those with AIDS and pregnant women, may become seriously ill, and it can occasionally be fatal. The parasite can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) and neurologic diseases, and can affect the heart, liver, inner ears, and eyes (chorioretinitis). Recent research has also linked toxoplasmosis with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and schizophrenia.[7] Numerous studies found a positive correlation between latent toxoplasmosis and suicidal behavior in humans.[8][9][10]   LINK

So far, what I have posted isn't of great concern; however, it gets far worse that what you read above. I will be referencing symptoms that I believe are responsible for some of the violence and crazy behavior we have been witnessing and I will leave it to the reader to research the rest of this disease from the links I am providing:

Psychiatric disorders

Studies have shown the toxoplasmosis parasite may affect behavior and may present as or be a causative or contributory factor in various psychiatric disorders, such as depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia.[15][16][17] In 11 of 19 scientific studies, T. gondii-antibody levels were found to be significantly higher in individuals affected by first-incidence schizophrenia than in unaffected persons. Individuals with schizophrenia are also more likely to report a clinical history of toxoplasmosis than those in the general population.[18] 

Chronic infection with T. gondii has traditionally been considered asymptomatic in immunocompetent human hosts. However, accumulating evidence suggests latent infection may subtly influence a range of human behaviors and tendencies, and infection may alter the susceptibility to or intensity of a number of affective, psychiatric, or neurological disorders.[21]

Latent T. gondii infection in humans has been associated with impaired psychomotor performance, enhanced risk-taking personality profiles, and higher incidence of automobile accidents.[21] Moreover, correlations have been found between positive antibody titers to T. gondii and OCD, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, suicide in people with mood disorders, and bipolar disorder.[21] Positive antibody titers to T. gondii have been shown to be not correlative with major depression or dysthymia.[22]

The most substantial body of evidence linking T. gondii to a neurological disorder involves the potential association between schizophrenia and infection with the parasite.[23][24] As of 2013, at least 38 studies have found a positive correlation between T. gondii antibody titers and schizophrenia.[21][25] While the vast majority of these studies tested people already diagnosed with schizophrenia for T. gondii antibodies, significant associations between T. gondii and schizophrenia have been found prior to the onset of schizophrenia disease symptoms.[23]

In most of the current studies where positive associations have been found between T. gondii antibody titers and certain behavioral traits or neurological disorders, T. gondii seropositivity tests are conducted after the onset of the examined disease or behavioral trait; that is, it is often unclear whether infection with the parasite increases the chances of having a certain trait or disorder, or if having a certain trait or disorder increases the chances of becoming infected with the parasite.[26] Groups of individuals with certain behavioral traits or neurological disorders may share certain behavioral tendencies that increase the likelihood of exposure to and infection with T. gondii; as a result, it is difficult to confirm causal relationships between T. gondii infections and associated neurological disorders or behavioral traits.[26]   LINK

From the above Psychiatric Disorders associated with this disease I am listing several of them that I believe are significant and can often lead to violence when none was necessary, called for, or even suspected:

Studies have shown the toxoplasmosis parasite may affect behavior and may present as or be a causative or contributory factor in various psychiatric disorders, such as depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia.[15][16][17] In 11 of 19 scientific studies, T. gondii-antibody levels were found to be significantly higher in individuals affected by first-incidence schizophrenia than in unaffected persons. Individuals with schizophrenia are also more likely to report a clinical history of toxoplasmosis than those in the general population.[18] Recent work at the University of Leeds has found the parasite produces an enzyme with tyrosine hydroxylase and phenylalanine hydroxylase activity. This enzyme may contribute to the behavioral changes observed in toxoplasmosis by altering the production of dopamine, a neurotransmitter involved in mood, sociability, attention, motivation, and sleep patterns. Schizophrenia has long been linked to dopamine dysregulation.[19] Minocycline, an antibiotic capable of passing the blood-brain barrier used for treating toxoplasmosis, has been found to alleviate the symptoms of schizophrenia.[20]   LINK  

Depression:  Some people who are severely depressed can and have manifested odd behavior, mood swings, and in extreme cases, extreme violence. I feel badly for these people. They are depressed for no apparent reason and it can begin to affect their quality of life that can often manifest itself with extremely bizarre behavior.

Anxiety and schizophrenia: I'm placing these two symptoms together because schizophrenia can be affected by anxiety, and for those who are not aware of what schizophrenia is, please allow me to post a short description of the disease:

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My Bio is as varied as my life. In 2012, my twin sons murdered a Journalist in Pensacola, Fl., for 100K worth of "Magic The Gathering" playing cards and buried the body in my backyard. I was once a regular writer here, but PTSD from my son's (more...)

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