If termite Coptotermes acinaciformis is not an intermediate host, could it be a safe food source for humans?

C. King, H. I. Jones, A. C.Y. Tay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

This study explores the possibility of Coptotermes acinaciformis being a commercial product for human consumption. We examined whether C. acinaciformis (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) is the intermediate host for the nematodes Abbreviata hastaspicula and Abbreviata antarctica by exposing a total of 13,500 C. acinaciformis to the infected faeces of Varanus gouldii (Squamata: Lacertilia: Varanidae) that contained embryonated eggs of the nematodes A. hastaspicula and A. antarctica. The termites were dissected at 6 intervals (1 day, 2 days, 3 days, 4-23 days, 25-38 days and 48-53 days). Eggs of the nematodes were recovered in the mid-guts of the termites during the first three intervals. There was no evidence that any eggs hatched within the termites. No eggs or larvae were found in the last three intervals. We conclude therefore that C. acinaciformis is not a potential intermediate host for either species of Abbreviata. We recommend C. acinaciformis to be consumed as a food source if C. acinaciformis has no other microorganism that would cause disease to human.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-143
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Insects as Food and Feed
Volume3
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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