Kissing bugs

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Kissing bugs

insect vectors (carriers) of the parasite (called trypanosoma cruzi) which causes chagas disease (american trypanosomiasis). The reduviid bugs kiss people, especially babies, on the lips while they are asleep infecting them with their parasite. Over 20 million people in the americas have chagas disease. The parasite can also be transmitted by blood transfusion and cross the placenta during pregnancy to infect the foetus.