Iranian Journal of Parasitology 2016. 11(3):296-302.

Molecular Evidence of Trichobilharzia Species (Digenea: Schistosomatidae) in the Snails of Lymnaea auricularia from Urmia Suburb, North West Iran


Background: The present study was carried out to detect the infection of larval stages of Trichobilharzia species in the snail Lymnaea auricularia in northwestern Iran based on DNA analysis.

Methods: A total number of 320 snails of L. auricularia were sampled from four water-bodies located in the suburb of Urmia City, North West Iran, during May to November 2011. The snails were first microscopically inspected for the infection with larval stages of trematodes. Genomic DNA was extracted from the snails and PCR was performed to amplify a fragment of the ribosomal DNA of Trichobilharzia species in the infected snails.

Results: Microscopic examinations indicated that 11.25% (36 out of 320) of the snails were infected with larval stages of trematodes, while the PCR patterns showed a much higher infection rate (31.25%, 100/320). According to the PCR, the infections were caused by the larval stages of T. szidati (21.56%, 69/320) and T. franki (9.69%, 31/320) or both of them (8.44%, 27/320). The infected snails were observed in three out of the four studied sites. The highest infection rate in a single site was 50% (25/50). Only 7.81% (25 out of 320) of the infected snails were from the plain areas, while the remaining was from high altitudes.

Conclusion: Results of this study contribute the utility of the employed technique for quick and accurate detection of the infection with trichobilharzian species in their intermediate host snails, which may have potential zoonotic role in the region.


Lymnaeidae; PCR; Ribosomal DNA

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