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Exotic parasite threats to Australia’s biosecurity—trade, health, and conservation

Thompson, R. (2018) Exotic parasite threats to Australia’s biosecurity—trade, health, and conservation. Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease, 3 (3). p. 76.

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Parasites have threatened Australia’s biosecurity since the early days of European settlement. Tick fever in cattle and liver fluke, along with their invertebrate hosts, and hydatid disease head the list of parasites that are still impacting livestock industries. In addition, there are many parasites that have been introduced that are of significance to public health as well as the conservation of native wildlife. As a consequence of these early arrivals, Australia has become much more aware of its vulnerability should parasites such as Trichinella and Trypanosoma evansi become established in Australia. However, recent discoveries concerning Leishmania and other trypanosomes have demonstrated that Australia must not become complacent and reliant on dogma when considering the potential emergence of new threats to its biosecurity. In this short review, the major parasite threats to Australia’s biosecurity are summarised, some misconceptions are emphasised, and attention is given to the importance of challenging dogma in the face of a dearth of information about Australian native fauna.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Veterinary and Life Sciences
Publisher: MDPI
Copyright: © 2018 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland
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