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Parasite. 2020;27:15. doi: 10.1051/parasite/2020012. Epub 2020 Mar 13.

Brachylaima spp. (Trematoda) parasitizing Cornu aspersum (Gastropoda) in France with potential risk of human consumption.

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Université de Rennes, CNRS, ECOBIO (Ecosystèmes, biodiversité, Évolution) - UMR 6553, 35000 Rennes, France.
Université de Rennes, CNRS, ECOBIO (Ecosystèmes, biodiversité, Évolution) - UMR 6553, 35000 Rennes, France - INRAE, Université Côte d'Azur, CNRS, ISA (Institut Sophia Agrobiotech), 06903 Sophia-Antipolis, France.


in English, French

The edible land snail Cornu aspersum, native to the Mediterranean coastlines of North Africa, is widely distributed on most continents and often invasive in areas where introduction is recent. This species could contribute to the geographic spread of parasites as demonstrated for Brachylaima spp. These cosmopolitan trematodes may represent a threat to human health, like in Australia where Brachylaima cribbi infects humans. In this study, we demonstrate for the first time the occurrence of Brachylaima spp. in two French populations of C. aspersum, Thorigné-Fouillard (Ille-et-Vilaine), and Arçais (Deux-Sèvres), with an overall prevalence of 10.4% (Thorigné-Fouillard) and 73.3% (Arçais), respectively and a metacercarial intensity on average three times higher in Thorigné-Fouillard (37) than in Arçais (11). Cornu aspersum may act as a first and second intermediate host, as demonstrated in Arçais. The morphometrics of metacercariae, particularly the great body length about 2 mm, discriminate our Brachylaima species from those already described in C. aspersum (B. cribbi in Australia, and B. aspersae, B. llobregatensis and B. mascomai in Europe). Molecular analysis, based on 28S and COI, suggests the occurrence of two species in our study, one of which is probably Brachylaima mesostoma, an intestinal parasite of passeriform birds described in Central Europe. We underline the need for further research to identify species of Brachylaima in France and measure the health hazard of consuming field-collected snails.


Brachylaima; Cornu aspersum; Edible land snail; Human parasitosis; Prevalence; Trematode

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