Thursday, 28 September 2017

New molecular tools to provide insights into schistosome diversity in Africa and beyond

Time: To be announced
To be announced
Plenary Keynote:


B Webster1
1 Natural History Museum, UK


Schistosomiasis is a debilitating water-borne parasitic disease of humans and animals caused by trematodes of the genus Schistosoma, which are transmitted through fresh water snails and highly endemic in many subtropical and tropical regions. Schistosoma spp. are diverse parasites with 25 described species all of which exhibit specific snail and mammalian host compatibilities. Most schistosomiasis research focuses on the control of the two main forms of human schistosomiasis, intestinal and urogenital schistosomiasis resulting from infection with 3 main species of schistosome, S. mansoni and S. japonicum, and S. haematobium respectively. Molecular technologies and tools are now becoming more and more readily available and making great advances in many fields including parasitology. Here I will show how molecular tools are providing insights into schistosome genetics, populations, host-parasite interactions and highlight the importance of the molecular characterisation of these parasites and their snail hosts not only for understanding their biology but also for achieving control and elimination. I will also present how molecular tools have the potential to provide more accurate and efficient transmission monitoring methods and infection diagnostics, both of which are greatly needed especially with the emergence and / or elimination of pathogens in our ever changing world

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British Society for Parasitology (BSP)
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