Acta parasitologica | 2021
Buffalo Infection by Fasciola gigantica Transmitted by Radix acuminata in Uttar Pradesh, India: A Molecular Tool to Improve Snail Vector Epidemiology Assessments and Control Surveillance.
PURPOSE\nFascioliasis is caused by Fasciola species transmitted by freshwater Lymnaeidae snails and infecting herbivorous mammals and humans worldwide. In southern Asia, fascioliasis is a problem in livestock from the Near East to Bangladesh, where recent human infection reports are worrying. In this region, Fasciola gigantica is transmitted by species of the Radix auricularia superspecies group. In the densely populated northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, livestock appears infected throughout. The economic importance of buffaloes highlights the need to control their very high infection rates.\n\n\nMETHODS\nIn the Gorakhpur area, a molecular method based on the two specific primer sets of genomic DNA was applied to fasciolids from buffaloes slaughtered in local abattoirs and cercariae from R. acuminata snails from freshwater collections.\n\n\nRESULTS\nPCR products and sequences demonstrated that the cercariae belonged to F. gigantica and that R. acuminata acts as vector for its transmission to buffaloes. The 72.0% rate found in one transmission focus appears to be the highest worldwide record of fasciolid infection in a lymnaeid population. Lymnaeid prevalences and burdens found close to human communities indicate a very high infection risk.\n\n\nCONCLUSION\nThis method is simple, fast and cheap because there is no need for sequencing, it differentiates between fasciolid species and between fasciolids and other trematodes infecting R. acuminata, facilitates epidemiological surveys, and is useful for surveillance to evaluate the efficiency of control measures. Within climate change predictions, future increases of rain events and floods suggest the need for control and surveillance efforts in this endemic area.