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Local adaptation of the trematode Fasciola hepatica to the snail Galba truncatula

Abstract : Experimental infections of six riverbank populations of Galba truncatula with Fasciola hepatica were carried out to determine if the poor susceptibility of these populations to this digenean might be due to the scarcity or the absence of natural encounters between these snails and the parasite. The first three populations originated from banks frequented by cattle in the past (riverbank group) whereas the three others were living on islet banks without any known contact with local ruminants (islet group). After their exposure, all snails were placed in their natural habitats from the end of October up to their collection at the beginning of April. Compared to the riverbank group, snails, which died without cercarial shedding clearly predominated in the islet group, while the other infected snails were few in number. Most of these last snails released their cercariae during a single shedding wave. In islet snails dissected after their death, the redial and cercarial burdens were significantly lower than those noted in riverbank G. truncatula. Snails living on these islet banks are thus able to sustain larval development of F. hepatica. The modifications noted in the characteristics of snail infection suggest the existence of an incomplete adaptation between these G. truncatula and the parasite, probably due to the absence of natural contact between host and parasite.
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Gilles Dreyfuss, Philippe Vignoles, Daniel Rondelaud. Local adaptation of the trematode Fasciola hepatica to the snail Galba truncatula. Parasite, EDP Sciences, 2012, 19 (3), pp.271-275. ⟨10.1051/parasite/2012193271⟩. ⟨hal-03593044⟩



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