Multihost Transmission of Schistosoma mansoni in Senegal, 2015–2018

Catalano, S and Léger, E and Fall, C B and Borlase, A and Diop, S D and Berger, D and Webster, B L and Faye, B and Diouf, N D and Rollinson, D and Sène, M and Bâ, Kh and Webster, J P (2020) Multihost Transmission of Schistosoma mansoni in Senegal, 2015–2018. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 26 (6). ISSN 1080-6040

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In West Africa, Schistosoma spp. are capable of infecting multiple definitive hosts, a lifecycle feature that may complicate schistosomiasis control. We characterized the evolutionary relationships among multiple Schistosoma mansoni isolates collected from snails (intermediate hosts), humans (definitive hosts), and rodents (definitive hosts) in Senegal. On a local scale, diagnosis of S. mansoni infection ranged 3.8%–44.8% in school-aged children, 1.7%–52.6% in Mastomys huberti mice, and 1.8%–7.1% in Biomphalaria pfeifferi snails. Our phylogenetic framework confirmed the presence of multiple S. mansoni lineages that could infect both humans and rodents; divergence times of these lineages varied (0.13–0.02 million years ago). We propose that extensive movement of persons across West Africa might have contributed to the establishment of these various multihost S. mansoni clades. High S. mansoni prevalence in rodents at transmission sites frequented by humans further highlights the implications that alternative hosts could have on future public health interventions.

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