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Its epidermal layer secreted a viral suppressant that was useful for treating cuts and bruises. It also had a more obscure property: if it was injected with DNA from another organism, the larvae rapidly transformed itself into a clone of that organism that grew, matured, and died in fifteen days. These clones were called "mimetic simbiots" and were practically identical to the original organism, including, in the case of Humans, having its memories.
Doctor Phlox kept a Lyssarian Desert Larvae aboard Enterprise NX-01, usually contained in a tank. It was removed from its tank by Phlox in 2153, when it was used by him to create a clone of Commander Charles Tucker III. He then extracted neural tissue from the clone, named "Sim", to save the life of the original Tucker. (ENT: "Similitude")