Scientist Names Parasite After POTUS Barack Obama

Posted: Sep 9 2016, 12:19pm CDT | by , in Latest Science News


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Scientist Names Parasite After POTUS Barack Obama
Baracktrema obamai is a newly named turtle parasite. The scientist who discovered it named it after President Obama, who is his fifth cousin, twice removed. Credit: Journal of Parasitology

It is official and he cannot back out of it now. A scientist has named a parasite after the POTUS Barack Obama.

While it is not exactly like receiving a Nobel Prize or something, President Obama has the honor of having a parasite named after him. Yes, you heard right, a novel parasite is being named after none other than the author of The Audacity of Hope and Leader of the Free World.

Termed Baracktrema obamai, it is a small parasitic flatworm that thrives in the bloodstream of turtles. The novels study named the hair-like creature after Obama.

Thomas Platt who is responsible for naming the flatworm after President Obama insists that it was meant to be an honorable thing and was never intended as an affront. Is that so?

Platt discovered and labeled the flatworm before his retirement. He is responsible for discovering 30 novel creatures similar to this flatworm.

The biology professor has named several of them after other people in his life such as his father-in-law and doctorate advisor. He means no disrespect to them in taking these categorical actions of his. The latest thing he has done is meant to honor Obama.

It was a token of gratitude that this humble biologist meant to bestow on POTUS Obama. Platt is in fact a distant relative of Obama. He claimed that people would do anything to have a biological animal named after them.

It was something to be proud of instead of a source of ridicule or parody. Parasites have gotten a lot of negative press though because they live off the sustenance of other species and literally prey upon it in a destructive manner.

Platt claimed that this flatworm reminded him of Obama. It was thin, tapered and lengthy. Also it was pretty cool as the President himself.

Platt said that the parasite was a survivor. It was hardy and did not give in easily. He was awestruck by this organism and held it up on a pedestal in the annals of biological science.

While cousins of the flatworm can be dangerous, it is benign and does the turtles it lives inside no harm. Parasites are very common in Nature. 7 out of 10 organisms on the planet are parasites.

The naming of this parasite was a tedious process. President Obama already has a fish, a lizard and a spider named after him. While parasites have been named in the past after other people in order to exact a revenge, Platt insists that such is hardly the case here. He means President Obama no disrespect.

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