Could Cat Poop Hold the Cure for Cancer?
The absolute worst part about owning a cat is cleaning the litter box, which usually involves your cat staring down at you the whole time, quietly chuckling to itself.
There's some good news though, all that poo you've been shoveling may just hold one of the greatest scientific breakthroughs of all time.
Scientist at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire claim to have found a certain parasite (toxoplasma gondii) which has proven to shrink cancerous tumors in mice. The only problem is that the parasite lives in the cat's intestine.
That means that the easiest way to find the parasite is in cat poop.
Yep, cat poop may hold the cure for cancer. Maybe those pesky felines are worth something after all.
The parasite can also infect humans but our immune systems will usually fight it off without a problem. Scientist at the college are hoping to create a synthetic form of the parasite which people would then be able to use to fight off cancer.
According to David Bzik, a professor at the college, "we know [that] biologically, this parasite has figured out how to stimulate the exact immune responses you want to fight cancer."
But don't start picking through your litter box looking for gold just yet. It'll take a little more research before a synthetic form is available and eating the cat poop will only make you sick.
If anything it's a step in the right direction when it comes to a cure for cancer. And remember... DON'T EAT CAT POOP!