The Strange Case of Typhoid Mary


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This needull tries to drive home a very important point – we need to understand tolerance of human body against disease causing germs. Defense is as equal an important strategy as offence when fighting.

 In the early 1900s, an Irish cook named Mary Mallon made the rounds in New York City, cooking for various wealthy families. She left a wave of infection in her wake. Scientists eventually discovered that she was a healthy carrier of typhoid fever, meaning that she carried the bacteria that causes typhoid but showed no outward symptoms. Mallon became immortalized as Typhoid Mary, a nickname that came to symbolize the spread of disease. “Typhoid Mary was a very tolerant host who unfortunately also shed tons of pathogen,” said David Schneider, an immunologist at Stanford University.

The complete article

Quanta Magazine — Emily Singer

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