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Parasites in motion: schistosomiasis

Follow the circular life cycle of Schistosoma, a life-threatening parasite that can live in water, snails and even people.

Watch our stop-motion video to learn how the sneaky Schistosoma parasite changes form, travelling between hosts and causing irreversible damage when it sets up home in humans. 

Stopping the cycle

The Museum's SCAN collection is the world's largest store of schistosomiasis material. It contains snails, larvae and schistosome worms, allowing scientists to learn more about the life cycles of different parasite species.

Museum researchers are working with collaborators across the globe to treat sufferers of schistosomiasis and develop a plan to stop the cycle altogether. 

Scientists working in the field are using the video to explain to local schoolchildren what causes schistosomiasis, how it is spread and what they can do to stop catching the disease.

Schistosomiasis is found in many French-speaking areas of the world so we have produced a French version of the video for use in those communities.