Department of Parasitology and Mycology, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, P.O. Box 71345-1735, Iran. firstname.lastname@example.org
Parasitol Int. 2006;55 Suppl:S197-202.
Echinococcosis is one of the major zoonotic parasitic diseases in the Middle East and Arabic North Africa from Morocco to Egypt. Both cystic and alveolar echinococcosis has been reported from these areas. However, cystic echinococcosis is more prevalent and has been reported from all countries in the Middle East and Arabic North Africa. Alveolar echinococcosis is less prevalent and has been reported only from Iran, Turkey, Iraq and Tunisia. Present situation of echinococcosis in dogs and other definitive hosts, animal intermediate hosts and humans in the Middle East and Arabic North Africa has been reviewed. Echinococcus granulosus is highly prevalent in Iran, Turkey, Iraq, Morocco, Tunisia, and Libya. In the Levant countries, the cystic echinococcosis is also highly endemic. In Oman, it is endemic with low prevalence and a very low level in Cyprus. Various surveys have indicated that hydatid cysts are commonly found in sheep, cattle, goats and camels throughout the Middle East and Arabic North Africa. Sheep are the most infected animals of these regions. Most of studies on human have been focused on surgical reports although several population studies have been performed using serological and imaging techniques. Human cystic echinococcosis (CE) is prevalent in the Middle East and Arabic North Africa. It is hyper endemic in Iran, Turkey, Iraq, Jordan, Morocco, Libya, Tunisia, and Algeria, and endemic in Egypt. Studies on the strain specificities of E. granulosus in the Middle East revealed sheep strain (G1) present in sheep, goats, cattle, camels and humans, and the camel strain (G6) in camels, sheep, cattle as well as humans. Dog/sheep strain seems to be more prevalent in the foregoing regions in documented reports from Iran and Jordan. However, a strain of E. granulosus, which resembles the horse strain (G4) strain, has been reported from Jordan. Strain specifications of E. granulosus in Arabic North Africa showed that sheep/dog strain (G1) have been reported from Tunisia and Libya both from humans and animals. However, in Egypt the human cases reported are of camel/dog strain.
Keywords: Echinococcosis; Middle East; Arabic North Africa; Human; Animal; Strain; Prevalence