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Experimental epidemiology of schistosomiasis

I. The prepatent period and cercarial production ofSchistosoma mansoni inBiomphalaria snails at various constant temperatures

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Abstract

Laboratory experiments have permitted the quantification of the developmental times (prepatent periods) ofSchistosoma mansoni in the snail over the whole possible range of constant temperatures. The basis relationship is satisfactorily described by a hyperbola of the formulay=268/(x−14.2),y being the minimum time from miracidial infection to cercariae shedding (in days)x the mean temperature, and 14.2 the theoretical temperature threshold (in °C). Cercariae production takes place within the limits of +16°C and 35°C, the number of cercariae being low and the mortality of snails high at the extreme values.

Long-term alternations between two temperature levels resulted in prepatent periods corresponding exactly to the proportional time-temperature products. However, slight accelerations of up to 7% and more could be observed when the prepatency began in a period of high temperature.

The number of cercariae each snail shed during a period of one hour exposure per week decreased from about 1,500 at 18°C to about 250 at 16°C. Shedding ceased completely after 1–2 weeks at 15°C.

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Pflüger, W. Experimental epidemiology of schistosomiasis. Z. Parasitenkd. 63, 159–169 (1980). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00927532

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00927532

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