Call Me Stormy

Finding righteous currents in turbulent times

Papua New Guinea Pigs

Jamie Dlux explores the work of physicist Carleton Gajdusek, a co-recipient of a Noble Prize in 1976, for his theories on the transmission of kuru.  This is a rare, generally incurable and often fatal neurodegenerative disease first detected among the Fore people of Papua New Guinea.

Gajdusek linked kuru outbreaks in the 1950s and 1960s to the practice of funerary cannibalism, as he observed Fore people digesting the muscles and brains of deceased relatives. Subsequently, this cannibalism was outlawed and the disease promptly disappeared across Papua New Guinea.

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