Silverback gorillas appear to use odor as a form of communication to other gorillas. Mammals communicate socially through visual, auditory, and chemical signals. The chemical sense is in fact the oldest sense, shared by all organisms including bacteria, and mounting evidence suggests that humans also participate in social chemical signaling. However, not much is known about this type of signaling in closely related hominoids, like wild apes.
New research at Penn State has revealed how infection by a parasitic fungus dramatically changes the behavior of tropical carpenter ants, causing them to become zombie-like and to die at a spot that has optimal reproductive conditions for the fungus.
Could this same type of infection afflict humans turning them into zombies and ushering in the much dreaded Zombie Apocalypse?