In the Neuromancer, Case got infected with a mycotoxin, which damaged his brain and prevents him to access the cyberspace.

Strapped to a bed in a Memphis hotel, his talent burning out micron by micron, he hallucinated for thirty hours. The damage was minute, subtle, and utterly effective.

Are there other direct effects of the mycotoxin damage? E.g. did he become dumber?


Are there other direct effects of the mycotoxin damage?

Unknown. There is no other discussion of the effects of the mycotoxin within Neuromancer, and no further mention of mycotoxins throughout the rest of the Sprawl Trilogy (Count Zero, Mona Lisa Overdrive). I'm also not aware of any mention of mycotoxins throughout his other books (and he's an author that does tend to re-use his own tropes).

E.g. did he become dumber?

There is no evidence of this; if anything, he is arguably making smarter choices by the end of the book than he was in the beginning. But that is presumably a result of his experiences and the therapeutic effects of confronting his inner motivations during the Straylight run.

There was also no mention of any physical effects (acne, rashes, etc. etc.)

Bottom line, we just don't know. If there were they weren't worth mentioning.

  • 1
    As regards him getting smarter, the surgical cure to his drug addition probably helped too. – FuzzyBoots Feb 3 '17 at 14:08
  • The line in the book, "He’d expected to die, then, but they only smiled. Of course he was welcome, they told him, welcome to the money. And he was going to need it. Because—still smiling—they were going to make sure he never worked again." makes me think his employers wanted Case to always be aware of what he would never be able to do again. I think reducing his IQ would run counter to that. – Joe L. Feb 4 '17 at 3:55

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