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The use of Tetraphyll as food for snails increases the intensity of cercarial shedding in Galba truncatula infected with Fasciola hepatica


Experimental infections of Galba truncatula with Fasciola hepatica were carried out under laboratory conditions to determine why the use of Tetraphyll, when provided every 3 days as food for snails, stimulated the intensity of cercarial shedding. In snails raised on cos lettuce and Tetraphyll, the number of metacercariae was significantly higher than that recorded in controls on lettuce only. In the former group, numerous metacercariae were counted on day 1 of every 3-day period (when snails fed on Tetraphyll), while the numbers of these larvae strongly decreased on day 2 and were very low on day 3. The repetition of this experiment using microalgae or modified Boray’s diet every 3 days as food for snails gave the same results. However, the number of metacercariae recorded on day 1 of every 3-day period was significantly higher in snails raised on lettuce and Tetraphyll than in those reared on lettuce and algae (or Boray’s diet). According to the authors, the first contact of an infected snail with Tetraphyll induces a faster differentiation of cercariae within the rediae and the accumulation of many free cercariae in the snail’s hemocoel, so that a second contact of the snail with this food 3 days after allows free cercariae to complete their glycogen and fat reserves and to rapidly exit from the snail. However, a temporary immobilization of the infected snail by Tetraphyll, or rather its degradation products, and a massed exit of cercariae cannot be excluded.

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Correspondence to D. Rondelaud.

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Belfaiza, M., Abrous, M., Rondelaud, D. et al. The use of Tetraphyll as food for snails increases the intensity of cercarial shedding in Galba truncatula infected with Fasciola hepatica. Parasitol Res 94, 86–90 (2004).

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  • Experimental Infection
  • Infected Snail
  • Larval Form
  • Prepatent Period
  • Patent Period