Doctors can't identify a tiny particle that's been found in the spinal fluid of schizophrenia patients. One Swedish researcher suggests it might be "a new form of life." A study by the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm involved giving 22 schizophrenics, and 38 healthy "control" patients, punctures to get a sample of their spinal fluid. Tiny spherical particles were found in the fluid from 20 of the 22 schizophrenic patients, but only two out of the 38 controls. The researchers are now trying to figure out what these particles are.
They first scanned them for the presence of DNA, but failed to find any. Then the particles were placed in a medium designed to encourage growth and reproduction, but there was no response to this either.
"We have viruses, bacteria and prions?this could be an entirely new form of life,? says Professor Lennart Wetterburg, of Stockholm's St. Goran Hospital. ?They are more like something like the prion, which is causing mad cow disease?but it took 15 years until it was found out what that really was."
The past had mysteries too?and the answers can still be accessed in unusual ways. Read ?The Mystery of the Crystal Skulls? by Chris Morton and Ceri Thompson, click here.
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