Title text: Volunteers needed for a study on transmission of urushiol from digital contact with thin strips of fibrous cellulose pulp.
This comic is about the ubiquitous study fliers that are placed around cities and especially college campuses.
This one obviously takes it to the absurd because it is a thinly-veiled attempt to get volunteers so that their kidneys can be “harvested” or stolen. Type O is a blood type that omits both A and B antigens so it won’t cause reaction in blood types having anti-A or anti-B antibodies and thus people having this blood type are the most valuable for transplants (there are still other antigens that can cause reactions but these two are the most important).
Urushiol is an oily toxic irritant present in poison ivy and some related plants, digital contact means touching something with fingers and fibrous cellulose pulp is a scientific description of paper. This together suggests that the person who put up the flier soaked the strips with urushiol and is trying to see if it will cause irritation in anyone who will touch the strips with their fingers (and it will within ten minutes).
- [A posted flier with nine tear-off strips at the bottom reads: "Volunteers Needed for a scientific study investigating whether people can distinguish between scientific studies and kidney-harvesting scams. (Healthy Type-O Adults Only) TAKE ONE" Five of the nine strips are torn off.]