Vampires and Garlic

Vampiric lore has tended to be consistent on several points on how to avoid or destroy vampires. In most cases, wooden stakes through the heart, beheading, holy water, and sunshine are the most effective un-dead re-killing methods. Crosses and garlic are considered the most effective means to avoid an attack.

Of course, scientists being curious by definition, two researchers from the Division of General Practice at the University of Bergen decided to assess the efficacy of some of these methods. The example they chose was garlic and their animal model was leeches: not un-dead, but bloodsuckers nonetheless. They published their results in the Dec 10th edition  of Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen (translation from the original Norwegian).

Vampires are feared everywhere, but the Balkan region has been

Generalized mouth of Hirudinea

especially haunted. Garlic has been regarded as an effective prophylactic against vampires. We wanted to explore this alleged effect experimentally. Owing to the lack of vampires, we used leeches instead. In strictly standardized research surroundings, the leeches were to attach themselves to either a hand smeared with garlic or to a clean hand. The garlic-smeared hand was preferred in two out of three cases (95% confidence interval 50.4% to 80.4%). When they preferred the garlic the leeches used only 14.9 seconds to attach themselves, compared with 44.9 seconds when going to the non-garlic hand (p < 0.05). The traditional belief that garlic has prophylactic properties is probably wrong. The reverse may in fact be true. This study indicates that garlic possibly attracts vampires. Therefore to avoid a Balkan-like development in Norway, restrictions on the use of garlic should be considered.

So there it is. If you suspect your roommate or hook-up is a vampire, don’t use garlic. Of course, if you don’t suspect your potential hook-up is a vampire, don’t use garlic either.

via Disco Blog

Apparently, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) in the US has been concerned for sometime about the DRAC1SUC3 virus.

Dr. Abraham Van Helsing, the man appointed by the CDC to “hunt down and destroy” the vampire virus, said that while dangerous, DRAC1SUC3 has never really been a threat to society as a whole until recently. “For the most part vampire related incidents are usually very low. Around Halloween you see a small uptick, but this type of disease likes to stay in the shadows and out of the limelight,” Van Helsing said. “But sometime around November of 2008 we witnessed a surge, or outbreak of vampirism throughout the country. Our studies have shown that this outbreak predominately affected teenage girls and closeted homosexuals.”

The CDC says the problem is under control for now and that the disease has fallen back into a dormant “in-between” period, just as it did in 2008. If the disease does resurface the CDC will be ready for it this time, Van Helsing said.

“We won’t be fooled again. We’ve seen how this virus works,” the doctor said. “It explodes in a quick, overly emotional, lust-crazed display of vampire love only to die out, remain dead for a few months, then rise again.” And while it may appear the threat is gone, the virus is actually still simmering under the surface, boiling over inside the loins of the millions of infected, Van Helsing said. “Based on our research, we believe the next outbreak will occur in June of this year. We are putting out this statement now so that the public can be ready for it.”

The CDC recommends the ingestion of garlic as a preventative measure, but they base this solely on a lower incidence of the virus in Italian communities. Give the results of the Norwegian study, this decreased incidence is more likely due to some other aspect of this particular group.

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