Korean J Parasitol.  2014 Dec;52(6):645-652. 10.3347/kjp.2014.52.6.645.

Fasciola hepatica in Snails Collected from Water-Dropwort Fields using PCR

  • 1Rural Development Administration, Suwon 441-707, Korea.
  • 2Department of Infection Biology, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon 301-131, Korea. yhalee@cnu.ac.kr
  • 3Department of Gastroenterology, The Affiliated Hospital of Guangdong Medical College, Zhanjiang 524-001, Guangdong, China.
  • 4Department of Medical Environmental Biology, College of Medicine, Chung-Ang University, Seoul 156-756, Korea.


Fasciola hepatica is a trematode that causes zoonosis mainly in cattle and sheep and occasionally in humans. Fascioliasis has been reported in Korea; however, determining F. hepatica infection in snails has not been done recently. Thus, using PCR, we evaluated the prevalence of F. hepatica infection in snails at 4 large water-dropwort fields. Among 349 examined snails, F. hepatica-specific internal transcribed space 1 (ITS-1) and/or ITS-2 markers were detected in 12 snails and confirmed using sequence analysis. Morphologically, 213 of 349 collected snails were dextral shelled, which is the same aperture as the lymnaeid snail, the vectorial host for F. hepatica. Among the 12 F. hepatica-infected snails, 6 were known first intermediate hosts in Korea (Lymnaea viridis and L. ollula) and the remaining 6 (Lymnaea sp.) were potentially a new first intermediate host in Korea. It has been shown that the overall prevalence of the snails contaminated with F. hepatica in water-dropwort fields was 3.4%; however, the prevalence varied among the fields. This is the first study to estimate the prevalence of F. hepatica infection using the vectorial capacity of the snails in Korea.


Fasciola hepatica; snail; prevalence; Korea; ITS-1; ITS-2; PCR
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