NatGeo :: New Amphibians Without Arms or Legs Discovered

Thiiiiiis is pretty cool.

Pictures: New Amphibians Without Arms or Legs Discovered.

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Nat Geo :: Guinea Worm in retreat in southern Sudan

Guinea Worm in retreat in southern Sudan – News Watch. (April 8, 2010)

I found the preceding article in lieu of the one I’ve just read in National Geographic’s July 2011 issue. The title of the short article is “Farewell to Guinea Worm” (Dracunculus medinensis). It’s an example of how quickly eradication efforts can work with the right circumstances. The Nat Geo article cites “education” as their most effective tool towards eradication. Teaching the locals how to go about drinking from their water supply (filter straws or fabric) and about the worm’s life cycle, gives them the tools to protect themselves.

Guinea Worm (Dracunculus medinensis) Life Cycle via CDC

The guinea worm disease (Dracunculiasis) isn’t fatal but can cause severe pain and put people out of work. The allergic reaction to the worm can cause diarrhea, nausea, rashes, and edema, among other symptoms. The death of an adult worm nestled in joints can lead to arthritis or paralysis (if in the spinal cord). Dracunculiasis may be the next disease to disappear, after smallpox!

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