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The parasitology is the area of biology that's responsible for the study of parasites. A parasite, in turn, is an organism that feeds on specimens of other species, living at their expense and affecting them but without killing them.

The parasitism, therefore, is the phenomenon that interests parasitology. This is the name of the association established by parasites with their guests. Experts in this scientific discipline also focus on parasitosis: diseases that cause parasitic beings.

By convention, parasitology is directed to eukaryotic parasites such as arthropods, nematodes, cestodes, trematodes and protozoa. The other parasites, such as fungi, viruses and prokaryotes, fall under the orbit of microbiology (the science that studies microbes, which are single-celled organisms only visible through a microscope).

It's important to mention that parasitology, in its beginnings, developed as a branch of zoology. In its origins, therefore, was responsible for the description of metazoans. With the passage of time, and the invention of the microscope, the impact of many parasites on the health of animals and humans was discovered and became a topic of interest for medicine.

Today, parasitology is located as part of biology. It's possible to divide it into specializations such as phytoparasitology (investigates parasites that affect plants ), zooparasitology (generates knowledge about parasites that have animals as hosts) and clinical or medical parasitology (directed at human parasites).

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