Cystic echinococcosis (CE) or hydatidosis is a widespread zoonose in the world. In Tunisia, despite the deployed prevention program, CE remains a serious public health problem. With a human surgical annual incidence averaging 12.6/100000 inhabitants, Tunisia is one of the most endemic areas amongst the Mediterranean countries. Three Echinococcus species have been described: E. granulosus sensu stricto (G1 and G3 genotypes), E. canadensis, and E. equinus. CE, which commonly starts during childhood and described as a young adult disease, may be observed at any age. The liver and the lungs are the most commonly involved organs but the cyst can occur almost anywhere in the body. In production animals, the prevalence of CE is ranged from 16.42% to 40.42% in sheep, 8.56% in cattle, 6% in dromedaries, 2.9% in goats, and 8.48% in donkeys. The elevated number of stray and semi-stray dogs and their frequent contamination by E. granulosus infected viscera is the major cause of the CE spread. A high prevalence of E. granulosus infection has been reported in Tunisian dogs ranging from 3.75% to 27.1%, depending on the regions. Thus, the sanitary education concerning hydatidosis should be reinforced and efforts should be made to implement a targeted educational program.
Part of the book: Current Topics in Echinococcosis
In Tunisia, both cutaneous (CL) and visceral leishmaniases (VL) are historical diseases that have been described since the nineteenth century. Cutaneous form is more prevalent than the visceral one. It is caused by three taxa (Leishmania major, Leishmania infantum, and Leishmania killicki synonymous Leishmania tropica) and six zymodemes (MON-1, MON-8, MON-24, MON-25, MON-80, and MON-317). Among these dermotropic zymodemes, sand flies vectors and reservoir hosts were identified for only three ones. Transmission cycles of L. infantum MON-24 and MON-80 and L. killicki MON-317 are still unknown. Zoonotic CL is largely distributed and covers mainly the sub-arid and arid bioclimatic stages. Nevertheless, it has recently spread to the humid and sub-humid stages in northern Tunisia. Sporadic and chronic CL are less prevalent with limited geographical distribution. Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is mainly infantile that affects children of <13 years. It is caused by the single taxon L. infantum. Transmission cycle of this parasite is zoonotic but not well elucidated. Three zymodemes are responsible for the genesis of VL (MON-1, MON-24 and MON-80). Only the transmission cycle of L. infantum MON-1 is identified. Geographically, VL is mainly distributed in the humid, sub-humid, and semi-arid bioclimatic stages of the country. Despite the large progress of knowledge in the ecoepidemiology of leishmaniases in Tunisia, many parameters of the transmission cycles of these taxa are still unknown and need further investigations to identify them.
Part of the book: The Epidemiology and Ecology of Leishmaniasis