A virus, known as ATCV-1 has the power to slow down the brain functioning of humans.
It infects a species of green algae found in lakes and rivers, and was found in samples from all over the world.
Robert Yolken, a pediatric infectious disease expert, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, and his colleagues found the virus in 43% of the 92 healthy and equally educated people who participated in a study of cognitive function.
Those infected with the virus performed 10% worse than uninfected people on tests requiring visual processing; were slower in drawing a line; and had shorter attention spans.
Yes, it is not necessary that someone whose cognitive ability is slower than normal is infected by the virus, but the virus can bring down processing power of the brain far below normal in smart people.
The researchers are still trying to figure out how the virus reaches the human host…