Published On: Sun, Mar 23rd, 2014

Gnathostomes in Asian swamp eels: An interview with USGS Parasitologist, Dr. Rebecca Cole

There was a interesting study, Gnathostoma spinigerum in Live Asian Swamp Eels (Monopterus spp.) from Food Markets and Wild Populations, United States”, published in the April 2014 issue of the publication, Emerging Infectious Diseases, which looked at Asian swamp eels collected between 2010 and 2012 from ethnic food markets and in Florida waters where the eel species is invasive for the parasite, Gnathostoma.

Asian swamp eels Image/USGS

Asian swamp eels

The lead author of the study, Rebecca A. Cole, PhD, Parasitologist with the US Geological Survey’s National Wildlife Health Center came on the Outbreak News This Week Radio Show Saturday to talk about the paper with host Robert Herriman (Listen below).

Dr. Cole explained the interest in the study, “Our interest was looking at is there parasites that would be of health concern, but also are there parasites at risk of being spread when these fish are released into the wild.”

“Are these eels carrying these infections into the US?”, she adds.

Gnathostomiasis is not very common in the US, Cole acknowledges. “Most often they are attributed to individuals who have traveled outside the US within the last 10 years to Asia or Southeast Asia where it is endemic.”

Dr. Cole discussed the parasite, Gnathostoma spp. to include the life cycle and human pathology.

To read the study, click here

For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page and the Outbreak News This Week Radio Show page

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63


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