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For the creation of the perfect zombies I have a "zombie-making mix" in mind. How good would it be for a zombie apocalypse? regardless of the level of realism in its creation.

I've separated my idea into four parts :

1. Pathogens:

Rabies, Schistosoma Mansoni (blood fluke), Toxoplasma Gondii (intracellular parasitic protozoan eukaryote), Yersinia Pestis (bacterium responsible for the black plague) and prions.

2. Carriers:

Biting flies, mosquitoes, the subclass of arachnid called the acari (louse, ticks, mites), domestic and wild animals.

3. The starting cycle of transmission:

The mix-up of pathogens would start because caged animals from Asia and Africa would be stored in a tight ventilated space with roaming vermin present.

The exposure to each other's fluids would cause the blood fluke to adapt to be an asymptomatic carrier and the bacteria and prions to mutate, making them able to coexist in the body of the blood flukes.

The parasite would get into some of the designated carriers and spread outside. While the blood flukes would be active during the transfer from host to host, the single-celled organisms and prions that cohabits within him would remain dormant for many months, Allowing the infected to travel through the country. Because the respective resistance of the bacteria and prions against specific medical treatment, a minimal number of blood flukes would survive treatment by oxamniquine, a drug specially made to kill them.

The bio-hazard menagerie would adapt against a diverse array of antibiotics and treatment. If the mono-cellular pathogens are contained in eggs of blood flukes and spores, the disease can survive a very long time in open air. Any surface touched by the fluid and breath of a infected host would be a source of contamination.

4. The appearance and behaviour of the infected in the last stage of infection:

Large portions of the body are necrosed. Where the skin fell-off, muscles and bones can be seen. Big burst buboes dripping pus are scattered across the skin. The eyes are bloodshot-red and the iris has turned milky white. When the mouth is open, yellow teeth are seen stuck in inflated gum and drips of foaming saliva sometimes fall from the side of the lips. Sudden muscles spasms impede already erratic movements.

An infected host would leave traces of the disease on whatever it touches. Very aggressive because of light-sensitivity. They hate pure water to the point of fear. Total loss of speech and rational thinking, the brain parts needed for that are. When not eating whatever it can find, it will wander and can try to eat infected or non-infected people.

Even in the case of a cure, the physical damages caused by the infection leave an ex-infected host in a brain-dead state or in constant pain if still sufficiently conscious.

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    $\begingroup$ Given how impossible zombies are and yet we have a ton of fiction about them...I don't see how your version is any more unrealistic than the rest. IMO, it's useless to try and explain the zombies. If people are sceptical about an apocalypse caused by dead bodies hunting the living, there isn't really an explanation you can give that will make them go "Yes, I see it's actually possible now". And pretty much nobody else cares about how zombies came about. Fans of zombie fiction are unlikely to say "Wait, THIS seems unrealistic". Non-fans won't care either way. $\endgroup$
    – VLAZ
    Commented Mar 8, 2021 at 7:29
  • $\begingroup$ I feel like you're overthinking this. Just make up a disease. Ultimately, all non-magical zombies are quite self-limiting, because they starve and rot and fall prey to animals and disease. Magical zombies are magic and need no explanation. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 8, 2021 at 9:29
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    $\begingroup$ @StarfishPrime eh, even "realistic" zombies linger around way longer than they should be a pile of useless meat. So, more than a week. The Walking Dead franchise (I'm only familiar with the video games) has zombies that are more than a year old. Somehow. Yet, as far as I know TWD doesn't try to explain why zombies exists, it just asserts some qualities of them. Like anybody who dies becomes a zombie - they don't have to be bitten. It's somewhat better without an over explanation. I don't know of any work that realistically explores what an undead non-magical zombie apocalypse would be like $\endgroup$
    – VLAZ
    Commented Mar 8, 2021 at 9:48
  • $\begingroup$ @VLAZ TWD clearly has magic zombies, they're just too embarassed to admit it. Some people have tried to describe a non-magical zombie apocalypse but they always come unstuck when they realise how non-apocalyptic it is likely to be and have to handwave in endless excuses for everything. It is all very tedious. Also, zombies are thoroughly overdone in pop culture, and a change is always welcome ;-) $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 8, 2021 at 9:53
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    $\begingroup$ @StarfishPrime "TWD clearly has magic zombies, they're just too embarassed to admit it" same goes for most zombie fiction. At least where the zombies are undead. There is some leeway for living hosts infected by disease but there is very few of those. "Also, zombies are thoroughly overdone in pop culture, and a change is always welcome ;-)" amen! One of the better zombie fiction I've read was Mogworld where the protagonist is undead. Also, a self-aware NPC in an MMO video game. $\endgroup$
    – VLAZ
    Commented Mar 8, 2021 at 9:58

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Honestly I don't think so, at least not unless your prions are very specific or your rabies has mutated. The only thing in your cocktail of zombies that affects the brain appears to be the prions and the rabies. The issue with rabies is that, yes, sometimes the infected animal gets aggressive, but they also sometimes become extremely lethargic or spaced out. Couple that with the fact that most people, when they are sick, are probably able to control themselves (no cases of human-to-human transmission of rabies due to aggression have ever been recorded). So you're left with the prions that have to cause the human to be aggressive and want to bite or otherwise attack others. I suppose that could do it, but then what's the point of the rest of the diseases?

As the comments say, just magic it up. "The Zombie Prion", just recently discovered, that simultaneously causes extreme aggression, is transmitted through saliva, and almost completely suppresses the immune system would do it...

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  • $\begingroup$ So the zombies should be just similar to the one in 28 days later, just not able to run because of the muscle deterioration. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 12, 2021 at 14:50
  • $\begingroup$ @TimothéLépine In theory I guess, but in 28 days later the virus was adapted from rabies, it wasn't rabies itself. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 12, 2021 at 15:23

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