Amebiasis is a disease caused by the protozoan parasite Entamoeba histolytica, which mainly shows symptoms of acute diarrhea, dysentery, amebic colitis, and amebic liver abscesses. As the fourth leading parasitic cause of human mortality, E. histolytica mainly infect children in developing countries, transmitted by food and water contamination. In the majority of infected individuals, Entamoeba sp. asymptomatically colonizes the large intestine and self-limiting, while in others, the parasite breaches the mucosal epithelial barrier to cause amebic colitis and can disseminate to soft organs to cause abscesses. Metronidazole (MTZ) is the recommended and most widely used drug for treating the invasive amebiasis. No amebiasis vaccine has been approved for human clinical trials to date, but many recent vaccine development studies hold promise. For the prevention and control of amebiasis, improvement of water purification systems and hygiene practices could decrease disease incidence. In this review, we focus on the epidemiology, transmission, clinical signs, pathogenesis, diagnosis, treatment, prevention and control of the zoonotic amebiasis.
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