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June 28 2014

Crop irrigation in Mesopotamia may have spread disease


The discovery of a schistosomiasis parasite egg in a 6200-year-old grave at a prehistoric town by the Euphrates river in Syria may be the first evidence that agricultural irrigation systems in the Middle East contributed to disease burden, according to new research published in Lancet Infectious Diseases.

Schistosomiasis is a disease caused by several species of flatworm parasites that live in the blood vessels of the bladder and intestines.

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