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Contact: Kathryn Sabella
sabellak@si.edu
202-633-2950
Smithsonian

Schistosomiasis Transmitted

Caption: Schistosomiasis is transmitted when parasitic eggs excreted by diseased individuals hatch in water and infect Bulinus nyassanus snails, the intermediate host that releases larval flatworms capable of penetrating human skin in aquatic environments. National Museum of Natural History scientist Bert Van Bocxlaer and an international team of researchers revealed that anthropogenic changes in Africa's Lake Malaŵi are a driving force behind the increase of schistosomiasis, a debilitating tropical disease caused by parasitic flatworms that affects 250 million people worldwide and threatens 600 million more.

Credit: Modified from Stauffer et al. (1997), BioScience 47 (1): 41-49 with permission.

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Related news release: Scientist uncovers links connecting environmental changes with spike in infectious disease


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