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Volume 16, Number 10—October 2010


Etymologia: Toxoplasma

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EID Etymologia: Toxoplasma. Emerg Infect Dis. 2010;16(10):1593.
AMA Etymologia: Toxoplasma. Emerging Infectious Diseases. 2010;16(10):1593. doi:10.3201/eid1610.ET1610.
APA (2010). Etymologia: Toxoplasma. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 16(10), 1593.


From the Greek tóxikon (poisoned arrow, from tóxon [bow]) and plásma (something molded). This genus of intracellular parasitic protozoa was named for its arc-like shape. Charles Nicolle and Louis Manceaux published the definitive description of the organism in 1909 after they observed the parasites in the blood, spleen, and liver of a North African rodent, Ctenodactylus gondii. The species T. gondii was formally designated at that time.

Source: Ajioka JW, Morrissette NS. A century of Toxoplasma research. Int J Parasitol. 2009;39:859–60. PubMed;; Dorland’s illustrated medical dictionary, 31st edition. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier; 2007.

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DOI: 10.3201/eid1610.ET1610

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Table of Contents – Volume 16, Number 10—October 2010