Study: Patients infected with toxoplasmosis become more attractive

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It may not seem to make sense, but scientifically it does. If someone seems attractive to you, they may be suffering from toxoplasmosisaccording to an interesting study.

The toxoplasma gonddi parasite is one of the most common and could be manipulating the phenotypic characteristics of their hostsmaking them more attractive, according to research cited on the Gizmodo website.

The study directed by Javier Borráz-León, from the University of Turku, in Finland, and published in PeerJ, determined that this parasite, which affects half of the world’s population, it can make humans more attractive to increase their reproductive success.

A 2011 study determined that this parasite produces some changes in the testosterone levels of male rats, which become more sexually attractive and preferred as sexual partners by uninfected females. Now, scientists found answers about it among humans.

The study

Borráz-León’s team studied 35 people with toxoplasmosis and compared them with another 178 uninfected volunteers, both for their self-perceived attractiveness, your body mass index, the symmetry of your face, and number of sexual partners, as per perceived attractiveness and health by 205 independent testers, who did not know who was infected.

Comparison of volunteers.  On the left, the infected with toxoplasmosis, on the right the uninfected.

In the case of men, research found patients had more symmetrical faceswhile women had a lower body mass index, as well as higher self-perceived attractiveness and a higher number of sexual partners than the uninfected.

Furthermore, both infected women and men were perceived as more attractive than uninfected ones by independent raters.

The results of the study suggest that sexually transmitted parasites such as Toxoplasma gonddi could produce changes in the appearance and behavior of a human host.

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