Research Article

The host—parasite relationship of Schistosoma haematobium in CBA mice

A. M. Agnewa1 p1, S. B. Lucasa2 and M. J. Doenhoffa1

a1 London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Winches Farm Field Station, St Albans, Hertfordshire

a2 Wolfson Tropical Pathology Unit, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Keppel St, London WC1E 7HT


The host—parasite relationships of two geographical isolates of Schistosoma haematobium in CBA mice are described and compared to previous reports on this parasite in other experimental hosts and in man. The mean percentage establishment of worms in mice was 17% and was not affected by the age or sex of the host. Adult worm burdens remained constant over 20 weeks, but were reduced after 18 months of infection. Male and female worms reached mean maximum lengths of 4·78 and 5·9 mm respectively. Egg laying commenced 9·5 weeks after infection and eggs accumulated in the tissues throughout the period of infection. A large increase in the rate of egg accumulation occurred coincidental with the appearance of eggs in the bladder of some mice. Faecal eggs were first observed in some mice at 12·5 weeks and most mice excreted a few eggs by 17 weeks p.i. (post-infection). Eggs were not found in the urine of infected mice. Excreted eggs and eggs isolated from the livers of infected mice hatched, but the resulting miracidia were unable to infect appropriate snail hosts. The development of hepatic granulomas and egg-induced pathology in the bladder of mice is described.

(Accepted May 11 1988)


p1 Department of Pure and Applied Biology, Imperial College of Science and Technology, Prince Consort Rd, London SW7 2BB.