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Infect Dis Poverty. 2018 Apr 9;7(1):28. doi: 10.1186/s40249-018-0414-7.

Snail-borne parasitic diseases: an update on global epidemiological distribution, transmission interruption and control methods.

Lu XT1, Gu QY1, Limpanont Y2, Song LG3,4,5, Wu ZD3,4,5, Okanurak K2, Lv ZY6,7,8.

Author information

1
School of Public Health, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, 510080, China.
2
Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Bangkok, 10400, Thailand.
3
Fifth Affiliated Hospital, Zhongshan School of Medicine, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangdong, China.
4
Key Laboratory of Tropical Disease Control (Sun Yat-sen University), Ministry of Education, Guangzhou, 510080, China.
5
Provincial Engineering Technology Research Center for Biological Vector Control, Guangzhou, 510080, China.
6
Fifth Affiliated Hospital, Zhongshan School of Medicine, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangdong, China. lvzhiyue@mail.sysu.edu.cn.
7
Key Laboratory of Tropical Disease Control (Sun Yat-sen University), Ministry of Education, Guangzhou, 510080, China. lvzhiyue@mail.sysu.edu.cn.
8
Provincial Engineering Technology Research Center for Biological Vector Control, Guangzhou, 510080, China. lvzhiyue@mail.sysu.edu.cn.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Snail-borne parasitic diseases, such as angiostrongyliasis, clonorchiasis, fascioliasis, fasciolopsiasis, opisthorchiasis, paragonimiasis and schistosomiasis, pose risks to human health and cause major socioeconomic problems in many tropical and sub-tropical countries. In this review we summarize the core roles of snails in the life cycles of the parasites they host, their clinical manifestations and disease distributions, as well as snail control methods.

MAIN BODY:

Snails have four roles in the life cycles of the parasites they host: as an intermediate host infected by the first-stage larvae, as the only intermediate host infected by miracidia, as the first intermediate host that ingests the parasite eggs are ingested, and as the first intermediate host penetrated by miracidia with or without the second intermediate host being an aquatic animal. Snail-borne parasitic diseases target many organs, such as the lungs, liver, biliary tract, intestines, brain and kidneys, leading to overactive immune responses, cancers, organ failure, infertility and even death. Developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America have the highest incidences of these diseases, while some endemic parasites have developed into worldwide epidemics through the global spread of snails. Physical, chemical and biological methods have been introduced to control the host snail populations to prevent disease.

CONCLUSIONS:

In this review, we summarize the roles of snails in the life cycles of the parasites they host, the worldwide distribution of parasite-transmitting snails, the epidemiology and pathogenesis of snail-transmitted parasitic diseases, and the existing snail control measures, which will contribute to further understanding the snail-parasite relationship and new strategies for controlling snail-borne parasitic diseases.

KEYWORDS:

Epidemiology; Pathogenesis; Snail control; Snail-borne parasitic diseases

PMID:
29628017
PMCID:
PMC5890347
DOI:
10.1186/s40249-018-0414-7
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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