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60th Annual Meeting of the German Society for Neuropathology and Neuroanatomy (DGNN)

German Society for Neuropathology and Neuroanatomy

26. - 28.08.2015, Berlin

Molecular identification of neuro-invasive helminth parasites from brain tissue: implications for prognosis, therapy, and transmission

Meeting Abstract

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  • corresponding author presenting/speaker Dennis Tappe - Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, Hamburg, Germany
  • Camelia-Maria Monoranu - Institute of Pathology, Department of Neuropathology, Wuerzburg, Germany

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neuropathologie und Neuroanatomie. 60th Annual Meeting of the German Society for Neuropathology and Neuroanatomy (DGNN). Berlin, 26.-28.08.2015. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2015. Doc15dgnnP31

doi: 10.3205/15dgnn55, urn:nbn:de:0183-15dgnn557

Published: August 25, 2015

© 2015 Tappe et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. See license information at



The definitive diagnosis of neuro-invasive helminth parasites is a challenge for both clinicians and neuropathologists. Depending on the complexity and integrity of the organisms, as well as the presentation on the tissue section plane, the correct identification of the parasites may be complicated and is easily confused. However, prognosis, therapy, recognition of possible parasite reservoirs and prevention of future infections all depend on the specific diagnosis. With the application of molecular tools the identification is greatly facilitated, also from sophisticated material such as formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded tissue samples. Here, several cases of CNS infections with histologically similar cestode and nematode parasites (Taenia solium, Taenia crassiceps, Echinococcus multilocularis and Halicephalobus sp., respectively) are presented which have been recently diagnosed molecularly in the human brain. The specific diagnosis revealed a totally different ecology and epidemiology despite very similar morphology.