UH study tracks prevalence of rat lungworm, its future impact

Photo credit R. Rollins. Laevicaulis alte, the tropical leatherleaf slug. Researchers found that 30 percent of specimens of this slug tested positive for rat lungworm. It was the only species to test positive for the parasite on all five major islands excluding Lanai.

Nearly 70 percent of specimens of this semi-slug, Parmarion martensi, tested positive for the rat lungworm parasite, the highest rate of all 37 tested species. Positive specimens were found on Oahu and Hawaii Island. (M. Medeiros/Courtesy photo)

Jaynee R. Kim et al. A map depicting which sites throughout the state tested positive for rat lungworm-infected gastropods.

HILO — A recent study by University of Hawaii at Manoa researchers revealed more information about where rat lungworm has spread — and where it might spread in the future as the climate changes.