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  • Author: Małgorzata Samorek-Pieróg x
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Małgorzata Samorek-Pieróg, Jacek Karamon and Tomasz Cencek


Taenia solium is a parasite causing porcine cysticercosis and human taeniosis and cysticercosis, parasitic zoonoses with a serious public health and economic influence. It has been globally ranked as the top foodborne parasite by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organisation (WHO). This parasite is transmitted mainly in countryside regions where animals are free roaming, having access to human faeces, and infected pork is widely available. More developed countries eliminated cysticercosis; nonetheless, there are insufficient data about the current endemicity status of T. solium, due to increased human migration from endemic areas. Formally submitted statistics on cysticercosis in pigs are extremely inadequate. This is the result of not reporting all cases of the disease by some countries and lack of molecular verification during identification of the parasite. There is a need to develop diagnostic tests with increased sensitivity and specificity. The purpose of the present review is to summarise current knowledge about diagnostic and control methods concerning T. solium infection. The article does not address the diagnostics of human cysticercosis, since there is a distinct medical field which should be discussed separately. The paper focuses mainly on identifying the sources of T. solium infection, presenting the methods to detect and control porcine cysticercosis and taeniosis in humans.

Open access

Jacek Karamon, Małgorzata Samorek-Pieróg, Bożena Moskwa, Mirosław Różycki, Ewa Bilska-Zając, Jolanta Zdybel and Magdalena Włodarczyk


Introduction: The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of intestinal helminths in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides) in the Augustów Primeval Forest (north-eastern Poland), with particular regard to zoonotic parasites.

Material and Methods: Intestines from 53 raccoon dogs and 66 red foxes were examined with the use of sedimentation and counting technique (SCT). Samples of faeces from 51 red foxes and 50 raccoon dogs were examined with the use of flotation method.

Results: Parasitic helminths were found by SCT in 98.5% of red foxes and 96.2% of raccoon dogs. Both species were infected with: Alaria alata (93.9% and 94.3%, respectively), hookworms (68.2% and 83.0%), Apophallus spp. (7.6% and 15.1%), Mesocestoides spp. (57.6% and 24.5%), Taenia spp. (40.9% and 1.9%), and Toxocara/Toxascaris nematodes (33.3% 15.1%). Echinococcus multilocularis was detected only in red foxes (6.1%), but trematodes Echinostomatidae and nematodes Molineus spp. only in raccoon dogs (18.9% and 41.5%, respectively). Additionally, Capillaria spp. eggs were detected by flotation method in 78.4% of foxes and 20.0% of raccoon dogs.

Conclusion: The study showed a very high percentage of red foxes and raccoon dogs infected with intestinal helminths in the Augustów Primeval Forest. Moreover, dangerous zoonotic parasites also were found, which should be taken into consideration in the assessment of infection risk for humans in this region.