Detective work to tackle debilitating disease in Zanzibar

Dr Bonnie Webster and Dr Anouk Gouvras explain how Museum scientists are helping to eliminate one of the most prevalent diseases in Africa: schistosomiasis.

'It was a bit of a detective story to work out why it occurs in the north part of the island and not in the south,' says Dr Gouvras.

The parasitic disease is carried by aquatic snails. It causes a host of devastating problems for the 250 million people affected worldwide, from painful urination and stunted growth in childhood, to irreversible damage of vital organs.

Find out how the Museum team used their taxonomic expertise to identify the culprit and treat the affected areas in a targeted way.

Scanning for disease

Learn more about schistosomiasis and how researchers are using the Museum’s collection to fight this neglected tropical disease.