To: D.Linz@scientist.com
From: S.C.Watts@theorist.com

You did the right thing coming to me about this. I had one of my friends look at that image you sent, it appears to be a bdelloid, a microscopic organism found in some freshwater. If your patients have these in their systems, they must have ingested unfiltered water at some point. That's probably how they contracted PTA, as well. What must have happened is this: your patient had to drink from a lake or pond, where she contracted PTA and simultaneously ingested the fish. Both creatures met up in her stomach after ingestion. The way this fish mutates is by absorbing DNA from its food (in this case PTA) and that's how it got to be as aggressive as it was when you found it. Usually these fish are very passive. They live to live, essentially, by only eating creatures smaller than themselves. By the time you found one, it must have been several generations old, since the originals you've described are aggressive already. They are able to reproduce like worms, when they're split instead of one end dying, they just become two animals. I imagine that at some point, the PTA in your patient's system started fighting the worms and that's how they've adapted so quickly.
If only we had any idea what an average generation is for a bdelloid, but unfortunately we don't know how long they live without interference of humans, we don't know how long they live before being able to reproduce this way, so we have no idea how long they've been dwelling in your patient.

I hope this helps. Also, I'd like to keep contact with you, Dahlia. I want to know what you find with these creatures. If this could have even the slightest possibility of leading to a cure... We have to know. I assume that your excommunication has something to do with recent murmurs on the part of the government, right? I can't tell you anything before I know what's going on with you. So maybe you could give me some explanation as to why you're on the run? I want to help you, Dahlia. I don't think you're a bad person. I don't think you've done anything bad--at least not on purpose or by choice. Let me help you, please. I will delete these messages as soon as this is sent, and I'm going to give you my encrypted address in an attatchment so you can send me messages without fear of detection. I'll be praying for you and your patient, Dahlia. Best of luck to you.



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