Newly-discovered parasite named after Barack Obama

Barack Obama (Reuters)
Barack Obama (Reuters)

It may sound like an insult you would expect to hear from the likes of Donald Trump, but US President Barack Obama is now officially a parasite.

Thomas Platt, a retired biology professor, announced the discovery of 'Baracktrema Obamai' in the Journal of Parisitology.

The parasite infects black marsh and southeast box turtles found in Malaysia.

Bestowing Mr Obama's name upon this new found virus was intended as an honour, despite the negative connotations.

"It's long. It's thin. And it's cool as hell," Mr Platt said, adding that it reminds him of Obama in a good way.

"It is a unique component of the diversity of life on this planet," he said, "Anyone should consider it an honour."

He chose to name the parasite after Obama due to sharing a distant common relative with the incumbent president - being his fifth cousin twice removed.

The White House has not yet commented on Mr Platt's findings.