Ling-Yuh Shyu1, Hao-Hung Tsai2, 3, Yi-Hsin Wang2, Shin-Tai Chong2, 4, Jun-Cheng Weng2, 3
1Department of Parasitology, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan; 2School of Medical Imaging and Radiological Sciences, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan; 3Department of Medical Imaging, Chung Shan Medical University Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan; 4Institute of Neuroscience, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan
Angiostrongylus cantonensis (A. cantonensis) is a zoonotic nematode parasite residing in the pulmonary arteries and brain of rats. It was first identified and described by Chen in Canton, China, and was reported to cause human diseases in 1945 in Taiwan. Now A. cantonensis is the major cause human eosinophilic meningitis in Taiwan. However, the features of the pathological changes in the brain were limited to diagnostic techniques. Previously the diagnosis was established by immunodiagnosis, lumbar puncture and eosinophilia examination. Fourth- or fifth-stage larvae could be found in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) with lumbar puncture. Improper puncture and false immune response resulted in an erroneous diagnosis. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to longitudinally monitor the lesion localization, pathological changes and angiostrongyliasis characterization of rat brain infected with different numbers of A. cantonensis larvae by MRI techniques. The results were also verified with histopathological study. The association between the clinical features of the rats and MRI findings was also addressed.