Bacterial Invasion of Schistosomes


SCREENING of filtrates from cultures of streptomycetes in mice disclosed that intraperitoneal injection of live bacteria killed an Egyptian strain of Schistosoma mansoni in the hepatic portal system. The antischistosomal effect was similar to that caused by chemotherapeutic agents, that is hepatic shift of the flukes from the mesenteric veins, followed by their destruction 3–4 days later. An unusual feature of the affected schistosomes was the much deformed dilated caecum packed with large numbers of Klebsiella pneumoniae identical with that given intraperitoneally. Pure cultures of K. pneumoniae, injected intraperitoneally or intravenously into mice infected with S. mansoni, demonstrated a positive relationship between the introduction of the bacteria into the bloodstream, their appearance and multiplication in the caecum of the schistosomes and the rapid death of the parasites.

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OTTENS, H., DICKERSON, G. Bacterial Invasion of Schistosomes. Nature 223, 506–507 (1969).

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