Microsporidiosis became recognized in humans with the emergence of AIDS in the mid-1980s. It is responsible for chronic diarrhea and wasting in people with AIDS. It is responsible for premature death in 35 percent of HIV/AIDS patients in poor countries and, we believe, in children with malnutrition. The infection is contracted by contact with infected animals and humans and by consumption of contaminated food and water. Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University has one of the few research groups studying this infection; investigations include laboratory studies and field work in Africa.