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Spirometra erinaceieuropaei

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Title: Spirometra erinaceieuropaei  
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Spirometra erinaceieuropaei

Spirometra erinaceieuropaei
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Platyhelminthes
Class: Cestoda
Subclass: Eucestoda
Order: Pseudophyllidea
Family: Diphyllobothriidae
Genus: Spirometra
Species: S. erinaceieuropaei
Binomial name
Spirometra erinaceieuropaei
(Rudolphi, 1819) Mueller, 1937

Spirometra erinaceieuropaei is a tapeworm that infects domestic animals and humans. In humans infection is called sparganosis. The worm has an interesting lifecycle. The adult worm is present in the small intestine of cats and dogs where it may grow as long as 1.5 metres. Eggs from the worm are passed with the host feces, when they develop into a procercoid larva. This larva may be directly ingested by humans or may enter an intermediate host which include frogs, birds, snakes, rats and mice and become a plerocercoid larva. When cats, dogs, foxes or wolves eat the intermediate host the worm completes its life cycle becoming an egg producing adult. Because humans would normally ingest the worm at the procercoid stage and are not usually eaten by cats and dogs, the human is a dead-end host.

In 2014 British man was found to have been infected by the tapeworm from an unknown cause (possibly a traditional frog meat poultice) while in China.[1] The parasitic worm was recorded on successive MRI scans of his brain, moving location by about 5 cm before doctors realized it was alive. The 50-year-old first visited doctors in 2008 suffering from headaches, seizures, memory loss, and complaining that his sense of smell had changed. The 1-cm ribbon-shaped larval worm was removed during a surgical procedure and the man recovered.[2]

Genomics

The genome of S. erinaceieuropaei recovered from the patient's brain was sequenced in 2014 and is available through the WormBase ParaSite website.[3]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Parasitic tapeworm lived in man’s brain for four years" The Telegraph newspaper (London), access date 11.21.2014
  2. ^ http://www.sanger.ac.uk/about/press/2014/141121.html
  3. ^ Genome Biology 2014, 15:510 doi:10.1186/s13059-014-0510-3 The genome of the sparganosis tapeworm Spirometra erinaceieuropaei isolated from the biopsy of a migrating brain lesion
  • Web Atlas of Medical Parasitology


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