Crohn's disease is a painful immune disorder that causes people's intestines to swell. Some researchers say that the intestines of Crohn sufferers reject the bacteria normally needed for proper functioning. The prescribed treatments have horrible side effects, including cancer and brain infections.
Some people with Crohn's are electing to be infected with parasitic hookworms instead.
In order to live as a parasite inside the human, the parasite must convince the host's immune system to chill and not try to reject it. With hookworms, they secrete a chemical that distracts the immune system, dampening down its response. Hookworms are common in undeveloped countries, places where inflammatory bowel disease is rare.
In the United States, thanks to advances in modern sanitation techniques, hookworms are rare but immune disorders on the rise.
Is there a connection? There could be.
"As we have made things more hygienic," Dr. Terdiman explained, "we may in fact be precipitating an outbreak or an increase in the frequency of these immune disorders."
Worm Therapy is a company that uses hookworms and tapeworms to modulate the immune system. A single dose of hookworms costs $2,399 and tapeworms (used for weight loss, asthma and allergy) cost $1,299.
Patients On Hookworm Therapy Swear By Treatment (Via Seth's Blog)
I asked Amy Parness, the co-founder of Sparkle Labs, maker of fantastic educational electronics kits, to write a Medium post about gender and the business of being a maker business person. Her terrific essay calls out the problems with “pink girly engineering kits.” From Medium:
Zero UI is the new term for “invisible interfaces”—what happens in the future when all the clicking and tapping and typing is history: “If you look at the history of computing, starting with the jacquard loom in 1801, humans have always had to interact with machines in a really abstract, complex way.” [Fast Company]
CEO Dick Costolo will resign, to be replaced in the interim by Jack Dorsey
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