Schistosoma intercalatum

From Biology-Online Dictionary | Biology-Online Dictionary



A schistosome species of class Trematoda and is one of the major causative agent of bilharzia in human host


Schistosoma is a genus belonging to class Trematoda of phylum Platyhelminthes. Members of this genus are commonly called schistosomes or blood flukes. One of the distinctive features of schistosomes is their sexual dimorphism such that the males are females differ in size or length and the males have a gynecophore to carry their female mate. The genus includes species such as S. japonicum, S. spindale, S. haematobium, S. indicum, S. intercalatum, S. malayensis, S. mansoni, and S. mekongi.

S. intercalatum is a blood fluke species related to S. haematobium. It is locally distributed in Zaire and other areas of central Africa. However, compared with other human schistosomes, it is an uncommon schistosome parasite of humans.1 It is the causative agent of schistosomiasis intercalatum in human host. This parasitic worm infests primarily the mesenteric veins. It causes mild dysentery and abdominal pains, with enlargement of the spleenand liver. Its intermediate snail host is a planorbid snail, Bulinus (Physopis) africanus.

S. intercalatum derived its name from the size of their eggs. The eggs are intermediate in size between the eggs of S. haematobium and S. bovis.

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1 Mahmoud, A. (2001). Schistosomiasis. London River Edge, NJ: Imperial College Press World Scientific Pub. Co. p.393-394