Prevalence of shistosome cercariae in medically important snails at Bugoto Landing Site, Lake Victoria.
Ajambo, Diana Winfred
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Snails of medical importance are intermediate hosts for highly infective snail borne parasites that cause snail borne-diseases. They transmit diseases such as angiostrongyliasis, clonorchiasis, fascioliasis, fasciolopsiasis, opisthorchiasis, paragonimiasis and schistosomiasis. These diseases cause major socio-economic problems in many tropical and sub-tropical countries. Among all the snail borne-diseases, schistosomiasis is the most prevalent in Uganda indicating 29% of the 40 million people are infected and the burden is up to 42% among children. Malacological and ecological aspects of the disease are superficially understood. Developing effective control measures requires an understanding of snail host, parasite and environmental factors influencing their distribution. Therefore, the study included collecting medically important snails, testing them for cercariae and determining environmental factors influencing their distribution. The snails were collected by scooping in the sampling sites, checking for infestation was done by exposing the snails to indirect sunlight in shedding trays for one hour. Environmental data included physicochemical (pH, TDS, conductivity and temperature). Sites significantly differ for the number of Bulinus ugandae (F=4.705, df=9, p=0.027) but did not differ significantly for Bulinus globosus (F=0.915,df=9, p=0.525), Biomphalaria sudanica (F=0.207, df=9, p=0.991), Biomphalaria pfeifferi (F=0.212, df=9, p=10) and Biomphalaria choanomphala (F=2.192, df=9, p=0.078). There was significant difference in the number of schistosome cercariae infested snails and schistosome cercariae free snails ( 2= 92.160, df = 1, p ˂ 0.05). Bulinus ugandae was distributed in two substrates but these did not significantly cause an effect on the number of Bulinus ugandae (F = 3.521, df = 1, p = 0.079). Bulinus globosus was found in five substrates which significantly influenced their number (F = 34.228, df = 4, p ˂ 0.05). Biomphalaria sudanica was found in two substrates in which the number of the species significantly differed (F = 29.979, df = 1, p ˂ 0.05). Biomphalaria pfeifferi was also found in two substrates, being significantly higher in MR than in MSR (F = 38.447, df = 1, p ˂ 0.05). Biomphalaria choanomphala was found in four substrate types which significantly differed in the number of species (F = 160.577, df = 3, p ˂ 0.05)