Transcriptome of the parasitic flatworm schistosoma mansoni during intra-mammalian development

Arporn Wangwiwatsin, Anna V. Protasio, Shona Wilson, Christian Owusu, Nancy E. Holroyd, Mandy J. Sanders, Jacqueline Keane, Mike J. Doenhoff, Gabriel Rinaldi, Matthew Berriman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Schistosomes are parasitic blood flukes that survive for many years within the mammalian host vasculature. How the parasites establish a chronic infection in the hostile bloodstream environment, whilst evading the host immune response is poorly understood. The parasite develops morphologically and grows as it migrates to its preferred vascular niche, avoiding or repairing damage from the host immune system. In this study, we investigated temporal changes in gene expression during the intra-mammalian development of Schistosoma mansoni. RNA-seq data were analysed from parasites developing in the lung through to egg-laying mature adult worms, providing a comprehensive picture of in vivo intra-mammalian development. Remarkably, genes involved in signalling pathways, developmental control, and adaptation to oxidative stress were up-regulated in the lung stage. The data also suggested a potential role in immune evasion for a previously uncharacterised gene. This study not only provides a large and comprehensive data resource for the research community, but also reveals new directions for further characterising host–parasite interactions that could ultimately lead to new control strategies for this neglected tropical disease pathogen.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0007743
Pages (from-to)1-25
Number of pages25
JournalPLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Animals
  • Female
  • Helminth Proteins/genetics
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Schistosoma mansoni/genetics
  • Schistosomiasis mansoni/parasitology
  • Transcriptome


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