This Leech Wants to Live in Your Nose

Large-toothed leech infests Amazon—and, of course, noses
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 18, 2010 12:50 PM CDT
This Leech Wants to Live in Your Nose
T.rex has eight extremely large (for a leech) teeth.   (PLOS One)

If the piranhas aren't enough to deter you from swimming in the Amazon region, this thing probably will be. A new species of leech has been discovered in Peru—and it's especially fond of dwelling inside the human nose, the BBC reports. The creature, discovered after a doctor pulled one out of a patient and sent it to a lab, enters humans through orifices and attaches itself to mucus membranes.

The zoologist who identified the species—apparently not keen to name it after himself—has called it Tyrannobdella rex, meaning "tyrant leech king." DNA analysis shows that the species belongs to an ancient group of leeches that has been sucking blood since dinosaurs walked the earth. "Some ancestor of our T. rex may have been up that other T. rex's nose," the zoologist said.
(More leech stories.)

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