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People, Parasites, and PlowsharesLearning From Our Body's Most Terrifying Invaders$
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Dickson Despommier

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231161947

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231161947.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 20 September 2021

This New House

This New House

Trichinella spiralis

(p.1) 1 This New House
People, Parasites, and Plowshares

Dickson D. Despommier

William C. Campbell

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses how Trichinella spiralis proliferates and infects the body of its host. Trichinella spiralis is a nematode parasite, occurring in rodents, pigs, horse, bears, and humans, and is responsible for the disease trichinosis. All trichinella species infect the gut tract of their hosts as adult worms, and produce live larvae that find their way to the striated muscle tissue, where they can live for up to twenty-five years. There the immature worm penetrates into a row of intestinal cells and enter the bloodstream to begin their own journey throughout the body. The heart pumps infected blood to all the organs, and the newborns eventually get stuck in capillaries because their diameter is wider than those vessels. This triggers the immature parasites to move out of the bloodstream, and to burrow into the surrounding tissue using their oral spears.

Keywords:   Trichinella spiralis, nematode parasite, trichinosis, parasitic infection

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