Raillietiella PCR test
wildlife and zoo assay data sheet
X0038 - Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of
by real time PCR.
Raillietiella orientalis belongs to a group of parasites called
parasites are also known as "tongue worms" because the shape of
the adult form looks similar to a long tongue.
Molecular and earlier
phylogenetic studies indicate that they may be characterized as
degenerate crustaceans. They are obligate parasites in the
respiratory tract of terrestrial vertebrates, especially
Raillietiella orientalis is common throughout southeastern Asia and
Australia, but in recent years it has started to appear in
southern Florida due to the introduction of Burmese pythons (Python
bivittatus) in the 1990s. It has now spread to other snake
species; for example, it has been recovered from lung,
trachea, oral cavity, and esophagus of banded water snakes (Nerodia
fasciata) in north central Florida.
The life cycle of Raillietiella orientalis and most other
pentastomids consists of two sexes, and internal fertilization
is used to produce eggs. The eggs are either coughed out by the
host or leave the host body through the digestive tract. When
the eggs are ingested by an intermediate host such as a fish or
frog, the eggs hatch to produce larvae which penetrate the wall
of the intestine to migrate to various parts of the host body to
form cysts. The larva is initially rounded in form, with four or
six short legs, but molts several times culminating in the adult
form. When an intermediate host is eaten by the definitive host,
the adult worm crawls from the esophagus of the definitive host
into its respiratory tract.
The prevalence of Raillietiella orientali infection in the United
States is not clear; however, approximately 38% of the wild
snakes in Australia have been reported to be infected with this
parasite (Kelehear et al. 2013). The study of this parasite is
often difficult because it is hard to differentiate the species
from other pentastomids by morphology alone. However, molecular
detection by PCR can be used to identify this species
diagnostically. Besides its high sensitivity and specificity for
detection in host samples, PCR can enable rapid environmental
screening of habitats or captive enclosures for potential
infestation by the eggs of this parasite.
Help confirm the
presence of this parasite
Help identify parasite carriers
that animals are free of this parasite
Help ensure that habitats and animal care facilities are free of this
prevention of spread of this parasite between animals
human exposure to this parasite
Safety monitoring of biological products that derive from susceptible
Kelehear, C., Spratt, D.M., O'Meally, D. and Shine, R. (2013)
Pentastomids of wild snakes in the Australian tropics. Int. J.
Parasitol. Parasites Wildl. 3:20-31.
Saliva swab, oral swab, stomach lavage, feces, fecal swab, biofilm swab,
or environmental swab.
if advice is needed to determine an appropriate specimen type
for a specific diagnostic application. For specimen
types not listed here, please contact Zoologix to confirm
specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.
specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or during
very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped and ship
with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping requirements are
specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped so as to remain
frozen in transit. See shipping
instructions for more information.
2 business days
Qualitative real time PCR
Capillaria / Pseudocapillaroides PCR test