Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Cat Piss Made Me Do It

In a previous post, I discuss how Curiosity Kills the Rat.

The short story is that toxoplasmosis, a protozoan parasite carried by cats and some other critters (but almost never by dogs), changes rat behavior and makes them more susceptible to predation by domestic cats, which are the parasite's definitive host.

Now it turns out that toxoplasmosis is not the ony parasite that shapes animal behavior, and it also turns out that motorcycles and fast cars are involved.

Yes motorcycles and fast cars.

Watch the video.

This is Stanford primatologist and neurobiologicst Dr. Robert Sopalsky explaining how research about "toxo" has given us (maybe) a new window into human behavior.

1 comment:

Chad said...

Robert Sapolsky always has something to say that is worth listening to. I’d watch the video if it were an hour long.
I love hearing evidence on how we aren’t some isolated magical conjuration. Most would feel being compared to a rat would lessen them as rats are below them on some celestial totem pole. It makes me feel more alive than ever knowing I am truly a part of this universe, not in many ways but in everyway. It helps me count down the seconds until I can get away from my human terrarium (aka hamster cage with top of the line Porsche work out wheel attachment) and back into the real world. Guess it just help me remember I am alive…