A while back, while watching a National Geographic on primates, I
noticed one of them appear to pick its nose and then put the finger into
its mouth. This is a typical habit of human children, as any parent
knows. The episode led me, eventually, to wonder if there is any
biological basis for the behaviour.
One possible explanation that occurred to me is that it might be a way
for the person or animal to immunize itself against some diseases. The
environment of the sinuses and the mucus would (could?) be a good place
to capture and destroy or dessicate viruses and introducing them
through the stomache could then act like a vaccination in the fashion of
some polio vaccines.
Anyways, this is by no means my area of expertise but I was curious as
to whether this idea has even be proposed and if there has ever been any
work done to test the hypothesis.
Since I do not read this news group as a regular practice, but am only
posting here to get reactions, I would appreciate answers via e-mail.
Thanks for putting up with an amatuer and for your replies.
Dave Katz, I.S.P., MSc.
Sector Specialist, Information Technology & Telecommunications
Saskatchewan Economic Development Phone: (306) 933-7212
206 - 15 Innovation Blvd Fax: (306) 933-8244
SASKATOON, Saskatchewan S7N 2X8 KatzD at Herald.USask.ca