Scientia Marina, Vol 73, No S2 (2009)

Parasitic infection levels by Anisakis spp. larvae (Nematoda: Anisakidae) in the black scabbardfish Aphanopus carbo (Osteichthyes: Trichiuridae) from Portuguese waters

Cristina Cruz
Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Portugal

Aurélia Saraiva
Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Portugal

Maria João Santos
Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Portugal

Jorge C. Eiras
Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Portugal

Carla Ventura
Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Portugal

João Paulo Soares
Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Portugal

Margarida Hermida
Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Portugal


Aphanopus carbo, black scabbardfish, specimens from 3 Portuguese regions (the mainland, Madeira and the Azores) during four (mainland and Madeira) or two (Azores) seasons of the year were examined for the presence of Anisakis. All the fish examined (n=287) were infected with Anisakis L3 larvae (prevalence = 100%). Significant geographical differences in intensity were found: the Azores showed the lowest mean intensity value (53.7) and Madeira the highest one (253.9). The intensity of infection was positively correlated with the host length in specimens of Sesimbra and Madeira. Significant seasonal differences in intensity were found in the studied regions. The very high values in prevalence and intensity strongly suggest that the consumption of raw or undercooked black scabbard fish is a potential risk for human health.


Anisakis larvae; Aphanopus carbo; fish; prevalence; intensity; geographical differences; Portugal

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