A Trematode Parasite Causes Some Frog Deformities

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Science  30 Apr 1999:
Vol. 284, Issue 5415, pp. 731-733
DOI: 10.1126/science.284.5415.731

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On page 802, researchers describe results indicating that infection by a trematode, a kind of parasitic flatworm, is at fault in the limb abnormalities and other deformities seen in California frogs. The researchers found that they could exactly duplicate the defects by infecting tadpoles with the trematode. Some experts say that this work, together with a second study reported on page 800 that may exonerate certain chemicals suspected of causing the abnormalities, makes parasites a likely cause of the frog deformities across the country.