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Contamination of Opisthorchis viverrini and Haplorchis taichui metacercariae in fermented fish products in northeastern Thailand markets

Onsurathum, Sudarat, Pinlaor, Porntip, Charoensuk, Lakhanawan, Haonon, Ornuma, Chaidee, Apisit, Intuyod, Kitti, Laummaunwai, Porntip, Boonmars, Thidarut, Kaewkes, Wanlop, Pinlaor, Somchai
Food control 2016 v.59 pp. 493-498
Hampala, Haplorchis, Opisthorchis viverrini, Puntius, fermented fish, fish, markets, metacercariae, monitoring, polymerase chain reaction, public health, Thailand
Consumption of raw or inadequately cooked cyprinid fish as well as related products (often contaminated with Opisthorchis viverrini and/or Haplorchis taichui) is one of the major causes of fish-borne trematode (FBT) infection, which is still endemic in the Greater Mekong Subregion including northeastern Thailand. This study surveyed FBT metacercariae (FBTM) in fermented fish dishes (pla-ra and pla-som) obtained from 73 local markets in 20 provinces of northeastern Thailand during April to November 2011. Fish were identified and examined for FBTM under a microscope. In addition, the coexistence of H. taichui in O. viverrini-positive samples was confirmed by multiplex PCR. FBTM were detected in fermented fish dishes from markets located in five provinces: Si Sa Ket, Sakon Nakhon, Mukdahan, Khon Kaen and Udon Thani. FBTM contamination was found in 9.58% (7/73) of markets, mainly in pla-ra. FBTM were found in four species of fish: Henicorhynchus siamensis, Puntius bimaculatus, Puntius orphoides and Hampala dispar. Multiplex PCR revealed 186 and 330 bp PCR products in most of FBTM-positive samples, indicating the coexistence of H. taichui and O. viverrini in fermented fish dishes. These results suggest that fermented fish dishes are frequently contaminated with FBTM and may serve as important sources of FBT infection in people who typically eat raw or undercooked fish dishes. This study might provide evidence leading to improved public health awareness for surveillance and control of FBT contamination in fermented fish dishes.