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Filarial Infections as Zoonoses*

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  18 November 2009

George S. Nelson
Department of Parasitology, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine


The paper summarises existing information on the role of animals in the transmission of filarial infections to man.

Wuclicreria bancrofti has not been found in animals and the parasite has never been transmitted to animals in the laboratory. Although bancrofti-typc microfilariae have been described from a potto (Perodicticus potto) in the Congo, there is no evidence that bancroftian filariasis is a zoonosis.

Wuchereria bancrofti var. vauceli occurs in man in Madagascar; the adults have not yet been found; the life cycle is unknown. For the time being it is best to regard this as a species inquirenda it is probably not a Wuchereria; it may occur in lemurs.

The sub-periodic form of Brugia malayi has been found in man and a variety of animals in Malaya. In the swamp forest areas there is probably a free interchange of parasites between man and monkeys; if this is confirmed then this is a definite zoonosis.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1965

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