The Amygdala War: Toxoplasma gondii’s surgical strike against the amygdala

As I’ve previously hypothesized, the amygdala is a likely target for parasitic castration, which may partially explain the otherwise mysterious rise of autism, a disease affecting boys more than girls, in areas high in south Asian immigrants

Now we discover a specific pathogen, Toxoplasma gondiis, has evolved to not just attack the amygdala, but do so with such surgical precision that it has few noticeable side effects on the victims:

Rats infected with the parasite became mildly attracted to bobcat pee. However, they remained as fearful of open spaces as normal rats. They reacted normally to sound cues that suggested mild electrical shocks were coming. Normally rats are somewhat reticent when it comes to eating food that smells unfamiliar. And the infected rats were, just like the normal rats, reticent when it came to food scented with the unfamiliar odor of coriander.

“One would thus assume that if something messes up with fear to cat pee, it will also mess up a variety of related behaviors,” Vyas said. “We do not see that. Toxoplasma affects fear to cat odors with almost surgical precision.”

Where was this brain surgery located?

Vyas’s team looked at the distribution of the parasite in the brain of infected rats, and found it was almost twice as dense in the amygdala.

Does this mean Toxoplasma gondii is responsible for the rise of autism?  No.  It means, however, that the theory that “surgical” operations on the amygdala might be a form of parasitic castration is more likely than it would be in the absence of such clear parasitic targeting of the amygdala.  Moreover, Toxoplasma gondii is transmitted to humans from cat feces.

How likely is it that an intestinal parasite endemic to South Asia might have migrated to Euroman’s major technology centers along with the rise of affirmative action (both in India and in the US) in bringing many more “engineers” to the US from India’s lower castes via the dispossession of US technologists during the rise of H-1b visas, not to mention support personnel for said Indian immigrants such as restaurant workers?

If likely, we might expect to see an association between autism and intestinal pathology.

Posted by James Bowery on Tuesday, April 3, 2007 at 02:48 PM in
Comments (13) | Tell a friend



Posted by Questionable on April 03, 2007, 03:52 PM | #

This is interesting and worthy of further analysis.  However, we should also still consider the “phenotype shock” theory to explain the link between South Asians and white autism.


Posted by law abiding south asian cognitive elitism on April 04, 2007, 02:35 PM | #


Posted by Superior South Asians on April 06, 2007, 08:24 AM | #

Please especially read the “other cultural curiousities” section.

This is the civilizational origins of gnxp, and these are the sorts that we are to import in the “hundreds of thousands.”

By the way, on “Good Morning America”, we see that the “TV causes autism” hypothesis being pitched, based on correlations between increased TV viewing and autism rates.

Of course, correlations between autism and the influx of “holy Asians” was not mentioned.


Posted by Superior South Asians on April 06, 2007, 08:28 AM | #

Walker writes:
“And if mother India is doing so well (as suggested by immigrants returning home), then Indians don’t need to immigrate here at all”

Indeed.  We should be especially intrigued by the “immigrants returning home” part.  Can that include not only the immigrants, but their American-born progeny?


Posted by Razib critiques DS Wilson on April 07, 2007, 07:50 AM | #

Attention Ben Tillman, on gnxp, Razib writes:

“Having reread Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior, which Wilson co-wrote with Elliott Sober, I am not surprised at the boasting above. Unlike Darwin or E.O. Wilson, David Sloan Wilson doesn’t mask his ego under a self-deprecating exterior, he makes it clear that other scientists just lack his subtle perspective, his Olympian breadth of knowledge. Other scientists find math hard, are cowed by Political Correctness and swept along with the latest scientific fashions. They can’t see what’s right before their noses, mere mortals that they are. Wilson’s ego is big enough to venture boldly into some pretty treacherous waters, recall that several years ago he wrote to defend Kevin Mac Donald against charges of anti-Semitism (Mac Donald works within a group selectionist framework). Unlike some of the cheerleaders for group selection theory he notes in Unto Others that shifting the level of selection up the hierarchy simply moves the conflict to that level (i.e., from inter-individual to inter-group). At the end of the day I often find Wilson’s work just a bit too clever by a half, but I’ll pick up this book for laughs and the bibliography. Even if Wilson’s ideas are crap because all sorts of stuff have been blended together to produce a confused mush, the raw material of his sources are often quite illuminating.”

Of course, these criticisms of Wilson would be more apt directed at Dawkins (or better yet, at Razib and GC themselves).

Yet more evidence of the political bias of gnxp.  At least, MR is overtly a political site.  Gnxp is just as political, but hides it, in a typically devious asiatic manner.


Posted by ben tillman on April 07, 2007, 06:27 PM | #

Compare Razib’s take with the following:

A great virtue of Wilson’s book is the scrupulous fairness with which he treats controversial matters. He is careful to define concepts, to assess both their range of applicability and their limitations, and to avoid posturing, misrepresentations, exaggerated claims, and cheap rhetorical devices. Thus, Wilson’s book is more than just an attempt to understand religion. Even to readers with no interest in either religion or science, his book can serve as a model of how to discuss controversial subjects honestly.


Posted by ben tillman on April 07, 2007, 06:29 PM | #

The source of the quote?  Jared Diamond, of all people:


Posted by The putrid stench of gnxp on April 08, 2007, 08:13 AM | #

Ben, what does that tell us?  That even a highly politicized “academic” like Diamond, who obfuscates race, distorts history and the like, is, at least, more honest and objective than Razib and gnxp.

Speaking of the “predictive power of race realism”, that applies to gnxp very well.  Is anyone surprised that the work of Salter and Wilson is mocked at that blog, and the Jorde paper completely ignored, while, at the same time, we are treated to discussions of “rare male advantage” and NY Times articles about white ranchers praising heterosis?

Once again: gnxp (which should not be linked to at all from this blog) has NO business being in a “science” section, any more than Majority Rights should be listed as a “science” blog.  Gnxp is a _political_ blog which, like MR, sometimes discusses science.

The difference is, MR is honest enough to be an overt political blog, while gnxp hides under the false pretense of being predominantly “scientific.”

Of course, MR was founded by an Englishman, and gnxp by a Bengali and an Indian, so these differences in character are, of course, to be expected.


Posted by The putrid stench of gnxp on April 08, 2007, 08:23 AM | #

A quote from a recent gnxp post:

“Now I don’t personally care much whether Churchill had Jewish ancestry or not, but I see from the internet that this claim (specifically, that his maternal grandfather changed his name from Jacobson to Jerome) is popular in certain circles. Why did Churchill hate that nice Mr Hitler? Why did he betray the Aryan race? Why, it’s obvious, isn’t it - he was one of those!”

Is this “science?”  Can Guessedworker explain to us the reasoning behind putting an anti-white political blog, which inteprets all scientific findings through the lens of “is this good for Razib and GC and the other holy desis?”, in the “science” section of the MR links?


Posted by The putrid stench of gnxp on April 11, 2007, 12:22 PM | #

Cognitive elitism at work…


Posted by The putrid stench of gnxp on April 11, 2007, 12:24 PM | #

More asian technocrats here:

how about some H1B visas for these Korean researchers?


Posted by Abram730 on July 09, 2007, 03:33 AM | #

I agree as I have been in and out of an Autistic state my whole life.  I was also born with Toxoplasma Gondii and had Toxoplasmosis as a newborn.  I ended up extremely intelligent, although a bit intellectually arrogant.  School was an agonising experience and I hated it.  I never payed attention or read or studied for test.  I just aced the tests.  It reached the point where I just went to school to take the tests.  Well until there was an attendance policy and then I just dropped out, but then I went to American public schools and do I need to say more.  example: 2nd grade I had a teacher beat the crap out of me for having the gal to insist that 3 - 5= -2 and her claim was that a larger number couldn’t be subtracted from a smaller number.  Just one of many examples of the stupidity I have been surrounded with.

So how did I ace tests that I wasn’t there for the subject it was on?  How did I answer question I was never taught on?  How did I teach myself a programing language with out any book or without taking a class?

How at the age of 4 did I teach myself electronics yet I couldn’t read?  How did I design and solder together a burglar alarm at the age of 5?  How can I discuss my ideas on the world at a quantum level and yet have never read a book?  How is it that I know so much about the world yet have never been taught much of anything?

English is my second and only spoken language.  Do you know what that means?

I loved Darren Browns trick with the lady in the window getting the person to stop.  I was doing that as a toddler.  I found it more fun to be Autistic then limit my self to a social existence.  Autism is a gift, just if you see tears or rage intervention and getting to the bottom of cause is important.  We have enough terror in the world without more Muslims being possessed with that feeling.  See an Autistic person also has a different language and is aware of things that you are not.  Gondii was my only friend as a small child and I learned much being Autistic.  See what causes a schizophrenic person to go crazy is quite sane in me.  I do have a mind set up for thinking and combat only so names, dates, tables, and other such things were let go.

If you have a child who is Autistic bring him to the zoo, and other places he can learn.  Bring him around smart people and he can learn.  One needs not read or talk much to learn.  It takes curiosity for the world.  Calling it a surgical strike implies that the amygdala is destroyed.  It is modified and I like the changes in me, but then I was born with it.  My mother was not and she is a train reck.  Many in my family were affected with it.  The stupidity of women with this bothers me and I wonder why it is said that they are smarter, but then Doctors seem to be the dumest educated people around so perhaps you mesure intelegents wrong as I only scored in the 150’s 160’s on IQ tests.

To Scrooby: 
  To be together we must also be apart.  Your racism seems quite ignorant and lacking understanding.  There are races for a reason, yet why fight mixing?  It’s a personal choice.  Also your understanding of genetics is flawed and incomplete.

An onion has 12x the DNA of you and an Amoeba has 200x the DNA, yet let me guess you think it is junk.  Evolution is as much Specialization as true Evolution.  There are many factors involved.  Ask a black man in America if within a few years white women got big butts.  The answer will be yes.  Was that selective breeding within a few years or a new advantageous trait offered from a song?  It was in fact a popular song and Toxoplasma Gondii.  That is a fact yet I don’t think you can explain it as a… and pardon my directness as no personal insult is intended…but I don’t see how a mental neophyte could explain it.  Understand your limitation and look to your strengths.  I bet your strengths are my weaknesses.

“Those that treat you will kill you” means don’t treat T. Gondii as a disease to be cured.  It is Superior to you in intellect and ability.  You’d still be living in a cave and screwing goats if not for T. Gondii.  A Young adult with T. Gondii and with high morals that sees immorality may become angry and that is when they find the terrorists.  It doesn’t require the internet or anything like that.  It only requires a Binladin and disillusioned youth with parents that don’t care to know and understand them.  It is that disconnect between young and old that feeds this.  We haver terror in America without Islam.  Look are Columbine…Virginia Tech and many many others.  A bit of knowledge and understanding could solve the problem, well with the exception of the power hungry cowards that fan the fire, the pied pipers of Islam.


Posted by james fiilner on February 21, 2008, 05:28 PM | #

Abram sounds like he should be scheduled for a serious “check up from the neck up.” Do they let them play with computers in the “Nut House”?

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