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Volume 3, Issue 4      October-December, 2015

PREVALENCE AND TREMATODE INFECTION OF FRESHWATER SNAILS WITH EMPHASIS ON FASCIOLOSIS IN PUNJAB, PAKISTAN
 
Asma Waheed Qureshi1,*, Akhtar Tanveer2, Azhar Maqbool3, Sadaf Niaz4
1,4Department of Zoology, Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan. Pakistan
2Department of Zoology, University of the Punjab, Quaid-e-Azam campus, Lahore, Pakistan
3Department of Parasitology, UVAS, Lahore, Pakistan
 
ABSTRACT
 
Many snails act as an intermediate host to spread parasitic diseases in humans and animals. Studies on parasitic infections in freshwater snails are rare in Pakistan. Freshwater snails were collected on monthly basis from the northeastern areas of Punjab for the period of one year (June 2005 to May 2006). Snails were exposed to light and also crushed to assess the presence of larval Trematodes in them. Larvae were identified by microscopy. A total of 23,922 snails, comprising eight genera, were collected from six water bodies and among these, prevalence of the genus Indoplanorbis was found highest (23.4%), followed by Bulinus (21.5%), Oncomelonia (15.4%), Lymnaea (14.9%), Bellamya (10.6%), Gyraulus (7.6%), Melanoides (3.8%) and Physa (2.8%). All snails were examined for Trematode infection, from which, 3541 (14.8%) showed the presence of Trematode larvae. Four morphologically distinguishable types of Cercariae were identified. Most Trematode infections were recorded from Lymnaea, which harboured three morphologically different Cercariae. Amphistome was the commonest types of cercariae (67.07%) recorded, while Xiphidiocercariacercariae(0.82%) was the least common. No trematodal cercariae were recovered from Oncomelonia, Bellamya, Melanoides, Gyralus and Physa. The only intermediate host for Fasciola cecariea were Lymnaea snails. Infection of these snails with Fasciola cecariae was influenced by temperature and rainfall.
Keywords: Trematode infection, freshwater snails, fasciolosis, Pakistan
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