“One Health in Action” pearl from a Veterinarian who teaches in a U. S. Medical School   An article in The  entitled ‘Litter bug’ presents some interesting stories about the transmission of the protozoan disease toxoplasmosis caused by the parasite Toxoplasma gondii.  It occurs worldwide in mammals and birds and is a common infection in humans.   The true ‘stories’ are always more complex than the media ones; its always an interesting classroom session when I explain to 2nd-yr. medical students that humans are much more likely to become infected with toxo [toxoplasmosis] from eating undercooked pork, lamb, or beef than they are from handling the litter boxes of house cats, especially if those cats are fed commercial cat food.   Since the advent of HIV, case-control studies have shown no causal association[s] between the opportunistic clinical toxoplasmosis suffered by many AIDS patients and their ownership of domestic cats.   When I explain how easily feed grains in bins and silos can be infested w/mice, rats, and feral cat feces and that, sometimes, those feces & mummified mice end up in the feed mill ... you can almost see the light bulb turn on above the students heads; most of them have no rural or agricultural experiences and never thought about the pathway that red meat actually takes to the supermarket.  Sadly, even today (esp. after the popular press releases of the mid-70s), most human school microbiology faculty still over-emphasize the toxoplasmosis/cat feces link, but not the importance of meat hygiene, i.e. cooking meat thoroughly.  Having said that, I also tell the students that immunocompromised humans, and especially pregnant women, should be counseled to only eat meat that has been thoroughly cooked, and always practice adequate hand washing following taking care of any of the familys pet animals.      Provided by Dr. Ronald Warner:   Ronald D. Warner, DVM, MPVM, PhDProfessor Director, TravelMed ClinicDirector, Preventive Medicine Division Coordinator, Comm. Med./Public Hlth Residency RotationDept of Family and Community Medicine, School of MedicineTexas Tech Univ. Health Sciences Center3601 4th StreetLubbock, TX 79430-8143 (USA)e-mail:  voice: (806) 743-1100, ext 261fax: (806) 743-1292