Parasitic Infections


After this unit, students should be able to:
1. Know basic concepts in medical parasitology.
2. Know the epidemiology, physiopathology, clinical presentations, diagnostic techniques, treatment, prevention and control of the principal parasitic infections of importance in tropical health and medicine.
3. Know the diagnostic methods in medical parasitology and how to critically interpret their results.
4. Know the principal research methodologies applied to Parasitic Diseases.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Jorge Seixas


Weekly - 15

Total - 92

Teaching language

English and Portuguese


Not applicable


• Barroso H et al. Microbiologia Médica. Vol 2. Editora Lidel, 2014.
• Bueno-Marí, R., Almeida, A. P. G., and Navarro, J. C., eds. (2015). Emerging zoonoses: eco-epidemiology, involved mechanisms and public health implications. Lausanne: Frontiers Media. doi: 10.3389/978-2-88919-618-0
• Hunter’s Tropical Medicine and Emerging Infectious Diseases. 9th ed. Saunders, 2012.
• Manson’s Tropical Diseases. 23ª Ed. Saunders Ltd, 2014
• WHO. World malaria report 2015. Geneva.
• WHO. Investing to overcome the global impact of Neglected Tropical Diseases: Third WHO Report on Neglected Tropical Diseases. 2015. Geneva

Teaching method

The Unit is organized in theoretical lectures (one for each of themes 1, 2 and 5) introducing the themes, followed by targeted group discussion. For theme 5 a practical demonstration of some diagnostic techniques will be organized. Theme 6 will be approached in an integrated way for each disease or group of diseases, including practical laboratory demonstrations.
For themes 3 and 4 the methodology of theoretical lectures will also be used, followed by case studies presented and discussed in support of the learning objectives.

Evaluation method

A final written assessment with consultation on transversal themes (clinical cases, diagnostic, treatment, control and/or research problems) related to the several disease or group of diseases will be asked.

Subject matter

I. Concepts and present importance of medical parasitology. Types of parasitism, host interaction, dissemination pathways and their determining factors.
II. Vectors: Introduction to Medical Entomology: mosquitos, Glossina spp. Phlebotomus. Distribution, systematics, bioecology, morphology and importance in human and. animal medicine.
III. Epidemiology, physiopathology, clinical presentations, diagnostic, treatment, prevention and control of the principal protozoan and helmintic infections in tropical health and medicine.
a. Malaria.
b. Human African Trypanosomiasis.
c. Chagas disease.
d. Leishmaniasis.
e. Schistosomiasis.
IV. Other parasitic neglected, emerging and re-emerging diseases:
a. Intestinal helminths and protozoans; cysticercosis and other tapeworm infections, hydatidosis.
b. Filariasis; Dracunculiasis; Intestinal nemathods, food-born disease caused by tremathods, free-living amebas.
V. Diagnostics of human parasitosis.
VI. Research applied to Parasitic Diseases.


Programs where the course is taught: