Zombie apocalypse stories are utterly terrifying but most people feel they are safe with the belief that zombies are not real. However, some scientific facts prove that a zombie-infested world can be a reality. There are plenty of organisms, parasites, and toxins that can create forms of zombies every day.
Here are three scientific reasons that a zombie apocalypse could happen:
There are parasites that can turn its victims into mindless, zombie-like slaves that are fairly common in nature. One of the most infamous parasites is the toxoplasmosis gondii or (T. Gondii). The T. Gondii is a single-celled parasitic organism. This type of parasite infects most animals and birds. However, it mainly reproduces in cats, both wild and domestic type of felines. The parasite can also infect rats but can only breed inside the cat’s intestines. The parasite attacks a rat and takes over its brain. Once inside, it intentionally scurries over to the cat. The rat with the parasite lets itself get eaten without knowing it.
Humans can come into contact with the parasite via cat feces that contain it. Furthermore, people might accidentally ingest the parasites if they touch their mouths after cleaning a litter box, gardening or anything that came in contact with the infected cat feces.
Eating and drinking contaminated food or water can also lead to the parasite’s entrance to the human body. Eating, Pork, lamb or venison meat infected wit T. Gondii can also give an opening for the parasite. Some unpasteurized dairy products and contaminated water can contain the parasite.
People can also get the parasite through the use of contaminated knives, utensils or cutting boards that came in contact with infected raw meat. Eating unwashed fruits and vegetables can also lead to the infection. Another way to get infected is through the organ transplant. The parasite can be transferred via an infected organ transplant or transfused blood.
There are some types of poisons that can slow a human’s bodily functions to the point that the person is declared dead. The poison coming from fugu (Japanese blowfish) or even the puffer fish can be deadly. The victims of the poison can be brought back to life under the effects of datura stramonium. This leaves the person in a trance-like state with no memory. Still, the person can perform basic tasks like, eating, moaning, walking and sleeping with their arms outstretched.
The tetrodotoxin is a neurotoxin that can take out the nervous system of the victim. Those who takes in the venom notice it first on the lips then the fingers. There will be a tingling numbness and the person will lose control. The toxin moves further inside, taking out the muscles. This will lead to the victim vomiting and diarrhea. The tetrodotoxin hits the diaphragm then paralyzes the respiratory system while the person is fully conscious. The poison moves up and reaches the brain, paralyzing the victim completely. Some victims are not fortunate to fell unconscious. Some people reported of being conscious occasionally or continually while in their comatose state.
However, those people are luckier than other puffer fish victims. Wade Davis wrote about the Clairvius Narcisse case. He case was a person who became a zombie. Davis claimed that the puffer fish poison, along with other neurotoxins makes a person seemed dead then attacks the brain, causing the victim to become a zombie.
Mad Cow disease
Humans can basically get mad cow disease. Doctors call the disease in humans as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD). The Creutzfeldt-Jakob shows symptoms that are similar on how zombies act in the film 28 Days Later. The person infected with a disease. It shows a change in the person’s manner of walking, stumbling, falling and getting hallucinations. Other symptoms also include muscle twitching, seizures or myoclonic jerks.
Humans can basically get mad cow disease. Doctors call the disease in humans as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD). The Creutzfeldt-Jakob shows symptoms that are similar on how zombies act in the film 28 Days Later. The person infected with the disease shows a change in the manner of walking, stumbling, falling and getting hallucinations. Other symptoms also include muscle twitching, seizures or myoclonic jerks.
Despite showing the early signs of a zombie, the person with the Creutzfeldt-Jakob is not violent. Nevertheless, it is not outside the realm of possibility that the disease might mutate into an aggressive form later on.
In fact, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that vCJD is a fatal brain disease. The transmission of the disease possibly happens through blood. Some studies suggested that the contaminated blood might transmit the disease.
The disease is rapidly evolving which has huge implications on the studies about the possibility of zombies. If the disease can be transmitted via sexual contact, it entails death to its victim. Lastly, with more evolution, it can possibly lead to a zombie pandemic.