Encyclopedia of Parasitology

Living Edition
| Editors: Heinz Mehlhorn

Anisakidae (Anisakis simplex, Pseudoterranova decipiens, Hysterothylacium, etc.)

  • Thomas KuhnEmail author
  • Julian Münster
  • Sven Klimpel
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27769-6_3505-1


General Information

Highly abundant genus of ascaridoid roundworms (Nematodes; Figs. 1–3, pp. 87, 88) of the family Anisakidae. The parasites are associated with aquatic organisms and can be found in a variety of marine hosts including whales, crustaceans, fish, and cephalopods.

Life Cycle

The general life cycle (Anisakidae) of these parasites involves broad range invertebrates such as crustaceans and chaetognaths, teleost fish species, and cephalopods, which act as intermediate and/or paratenic hosts. Marine mammals (toothed and baleen whales, sometimes seals) serve as definitive hosts. Toothed and baleen whales of the families Delphinidae, Ziphiidae, Physeteridae, and Kogiidae are considered the main definitive hosts, but members of Balaenopteridae, Pontoporiidae, Monodontidae, Phocoenidae, and Neobalaenidae have also been documented. Adult Anisakislive in the alimentary tract of their definitive hosts where they reproduce. The eggs are dispersed...


Atlantic Salmon Intermediate Host Marine Mammal Definitive Host Alimentary Tract 
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Further Reading

  1. Klimpel S, Busch MW, Kuhn T, Rohde A, Palm HW (2010) The Anisakis simplex complex off the South Shetland Islands (Antarctica): endemic populations versus introduction through migratory hosts. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 403:1–11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Kuhn T, García-Màrquez J, Klimpel S (2011) Adaptive radiation within marine anisakid nematodes: a zoogeographical modeling of cosmopolitan, zoonotic parasites. PLoS One 6:e28642CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  3. Mattiucci S, Nascetti G (2008) Advances and trends in the molecular systematics of anisakid nematodes, with implications for their evolutionary ecology and host-parasite co-evolutionary processes. Adv Parasitol 66:47–148CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Ecology, Evolution and Diversity; Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F); Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung (SGN)Goethe-University (GU)Frankfurt am MainGermany