Molecular identification of Ancylostoma ceylanicum in the Philippines

Oyime P. Aula, Donald P. Mcmanus, Kosala G. Weerakoon, Remigio Olveda, Allen G. Ross, Madeleine J. Rogers, Catherine A. Gordon

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)


    Hookworms are some of the most widespread of the soil-transmitted helminths (STH) with an estimated 438.9 million people infected. Until relatively recently Ancylostoma ceylanicum was regarded as a rare cause of hookworm infection in humans, with little public health relevance. However, recent advances in molecular diagnostics have revealed a much higher prevalence of this zoonotic hookworm than previously thought, particularly in Asia. This study examined the prevalence of STH and A. ceylanicum in the municipalities of Palapag and Laoang in the Philippines utilizing real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) on stool samples previously collected as part of a cross-sectional survey of schistosomiasis japonica. Prevalence of hookworm in humans was high with 52.8% (n = 228/432) individuals positive for any hookworm, 34.5% (n = 149/432) infected with Necator americanus, and 29.6% (n = 128/432) with Ancylostoma spp; of these, 34 were PCR-positive for A. ceylanicum. Considering dogs, 12 (n = 33) were PCR-positive for A. ceylanicum. This is the first study to utilize molecular diagnostics to identify A. ceylanicum in the Philippines with both humans and dogs infected. Control and elimination of this zoonotic hookworm will require a multifaceted approach including chemotherapy of humans, identification of animal reservoirs, improvements in health infrastructure, and health education to help prevent infection.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1718-1722
    Number of pages5
    Issue number14
    Early online date24 Aug 2020
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


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