Hymenolepis nana (Dwarf Tapeworm) — photos

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Hexacanth oncosphere.

Photo 1.  Hexacanth oncosphere. This cosmopolitan tapeworm reaches only 2.5 to 4 cm in length and lives in the small intestine of man and rodents. Infection is acquired directly by ingesting eggs. After ingestion by a mammal or by certain insects the eggs {see 304) hatch into the hexacanth oncospheres. (x250)

Cercocyst in intestinal villi.

Photo 2.  Cercocyst in intestinal villi. In the mammal these penetrate into the villi of the small intestine. There they mature into tailless cysticercoids (cercocysts) which leave the villi, move further down the gut and become attached to other villi, where they mature to adult tapeworms. (x 100)

Cysticercoid in insect.

Photo 3.  Cysticercoid in insect. If the egg is eaten by an insect the oncosphere metamorphoses to form a tailed cysticercoid in the insect's body cavity. Further development takes place if the insect is ingested by man. (x 60)

Mature proglottid.

Photo 4.  Mature proglottid. Man is probably the only source of human infection, rodents being infected possibly by a different (non-human) strain.(x 15)

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