In the news
July 25, 2022
Bobbi Pritt, M.D., chair of the Division of Clinical Microbiology in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at Mayo Clinic and director of the Clinical Parasitology Laboratory, provides her perspective on parasites in the latest edition of National Geographic magazine.
The article, “Parasites are going extinct. Here’s why we need to save them,” explains the fascinating role parasites play in the ecosystem, and why biologists consider them important despite the lack of data available.
Biologists are advocating for the need for more research, as 40% of all known animals are parasites, yet scientists believe there are potentially millions of more parasites left to be discovered.
The article shares how a typical day for Dr. Pritt revolves around uncovering parasites. “Pritt identifies parasites found all over the country and in every body part. A typical day could see her working with blood carrying malaria parasites, brain tissue full of Toxoplasma gondii, or toe scrapings containing sand fleas that someone picked up walking barefoot on the beach.”
Dr. Pritt also writes a blog called “Creepy Dreadful Wonderful Parasites,” where she posts a new parasite case each week.