Korean J Parasitol.  2019 Dec;57(6):621-625. 10.3347/kjp.2019.57.6.621.

Confusing a Pollen Grain with a Parasite Egg: an Appraisal of “Paleoparasitological Evidence of Pinworm (Enterobius Vermicularis) Infection in a Female Adolescent Residing in Ancient Tehran”

Affiliations
  • 1Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública Sergio Arouca, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. morganacamacho88@gmail.com
  • 2School of Natural Resource Sciences, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, USA.

Abstract

There is often the risk of confusing pollen grains with helminth eggs from archaeological sites. Thousands to millions of pollen grains can be recovered from archaeological burial sediments that represent past ritual, medication and environment. Some pollen grain types can be similar to parasite eggs. Such a confusion is represented by the diagnosis of enterobiasis in ancient Iran. The authors of this study confused a joint-pine (Ephedra spp.) pollen grain with a pinworm egg. This paper describes the specific Ephedra pollen morphology that can be confused with pinworm eggs.

Keyword

Ephedra; Enterobius egg; palynology; pollen; pinworm; archaeology

MeSH Terms

Adolescent*
Archaeology
Burial
Diagnosis
Eggs
Enterobiasis
Enterobius*
Ephedra
Female*
Helminths
Humans
Iran
Ovum*
Parasites*
Pollen*
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