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

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          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.

          Electronic supplementary material

          The online version of this article (10.1186/s40249-018-0414-7) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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          Most cited references 110

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          Human schistosomiasis.

          Human schistosomiasis--or bilharzia--is a parasitic disease caused by trematode flukes of the genus Schistosoma. By conservative estimates, at least 230 million people worldwide are infected with Schistosoma spp. Adult schistosome worms colonise human blood vessels for years, successfully evading the immune system while excreting hundreds to thousands of eggs daily, which must either leave the body in excreta or become trapped in nearby tissues. Trapped eggs induce a distinct immune-mediated granulomatous response that causes local and systemic pathological effects ranging from anaemia, growth stunting, impaired cognition, and decreased physical fitness, to organ-specific effects such as severe hepatosplenism, periportal fibrosis with portal hypertension, and urogenital inflammation and scarring. At present, preventive public health measures in endemic regions consist of treatment once every 1 or 2 years with the isoquinolinone drug, praziquantel, to suppress morbidity. In some locations, elimination of transmission is now the goal; however, more sensitive diagnostics are needed in both the field and clinics, and integrated environmental and health-care management will be needed to ensure elimination. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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            Fascioliasis and other plant-borne trematode zoonoses.

            Fascioliasis and other food-borne trematodiases are included in the list of important helminthiases with a great impact on human development. Six plant-borne trematode species have been found to affect humans: Fasciola hepatica, Fasciola gigantica and Fasciolopsis buski (Fasciolidae), Gastrodiscoides hominis (Gastrodiscidae), Watsonius watsoni and Fischoederius elongatus (Paramphistomidae). Whereas F. hepatica and F. gigantica are hepatic, the other four species are intestinal parasites. The fasciolids and the gastrodiscid cause important zoonoses distributed throughout many countries, while W. watsoni and F. elongatus have been only accidentally detected in humans. Present climate and global changes appear to increasingly affect snail-borne helminthiases, which are strongly dependent on environmental factors. Fascioliasis is a good example of an emerging/re-emerging parasitic disease in many countries as a consequence of many phenomena related to environmental changes as well as man-made modifications. The ability of F. hepatica to spread is related to its capacity to colonise and adapt to new hosts and environments, even at the extreme inhospitality of very high altitude. Moreover, the spread of F. hepatica from its original European range to other continents is related to the geographic expansion of its original European lymnaeid intermediate host species Galba truncatula, the American species Pseudosuccinea columella, and its adaptation to other lymnaeid species authochthonous in the newly colonised areas. Although fasciolopsiasis and gastrodiscoidiasis can be controlled along with other food-borne parasitoses, fasciolopsiasis still remains a public health problem in many endemic areas despite sustained WHO control programmes. Fasciolopsiasis has become a re-emerging infection in recent years and gastrodiscoidiasis, initially supposed to be restricted to Asian countries, is now being reported in African countries.
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              Food-borne trematodiases.

              An estimated 750 million people are at risk of infections with food-borne trematodes, which comprise liver flukes (Clonorchis sinensis, Fasciola gigantica, Fasciola hepatica, Opisthorchis felineus, and Opisthorchis viverrini), lung flukes (Paragonimus spp.), and intestinal flukes (e.g., Echinostoma spp., Fasciolopsis buski, and the heterophyids). Food-borne trematodiases pose a significant public health and economic problem, yet these diseases are often neglected. In this review, we summarize the taxonomy, morphology, and life cycle of food-borne trematodes. Estimates of the at-risk population and number of infections, geographic distribution, history, and ecological features of the major food-borne trematodes are reviewed. We summarize clinical manifestations, patterns of infection, and current means of diagnosis, treatment, and other control options. The changing epidemiological pattern and the rapid growth of aquaculture and food distribution networks are highlighted, as these developments might be associated with an elevated risk of transmission of food-borne trematodiases. Current research needs are emphasized.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                luxt3@mail2.sysu.edu.cn
                guqy3@mail2.sysu.edu.cn
                yanin.lim@mahidol.ac.th
                308916762@qq.com
                1151917403@qq.com
                kamolnetr.oka@mahidol.ac.th
                lvzhiyue@mail.sysu.edu.cn
                Journal
                Infect Dis Poverty
                Infect Dis Poverty
                Infectious Diseases of Poverty
                BioMed Central (London )
                2095-5162
                2049-9957
                9 April 2018
                9 April 2018
                2018
                : 7
                Affiliations
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2360 039X, GRID grid.12981.33, School of Public Health, , Sun Yat-sen University, ; Guangzhou, 510080 China
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1937 0490, GRID grid.10223.32, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, , Mahidol University, ; Bangkok, 10400 Thailand
                [3 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2360 039X, GRID grid.12981.33, Fifth Affiliated Hospital, Zhongshan School of Medicine, , Sun Yat-sen University, ; Guangdong, China
                [4 ]ISNI 0000 0004 0369 313X, GRID grid.419897.a, 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
                Article
                414
                10.1186/s40249-018-0414-7
                5890347
                29628017
                © The Author(s). 2018

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Funding
                Funded by: The National Key Research and Development Program of China
                Award ID: 2016YFC1202003
                Categories
                Scoping Review
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2018

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