Chilomastix mesnili is a non-parasitic member of primate gastrointestinal microflora, commonly associated with but not causing parasitic infections. It is found in about 3.5% of the population in the United States. In addition to humans, Chilomastix is found in chimpanzees, orangutans, monkeys, and pigs. It lives in the cecum and colon. C. mesnili has a similar life style to Giardia lamblia.
Although Chilomastix mesnili is considered non-pathogenic, it often occurs with other parasite infections. C. mesnili may be confused with other pathogenic species during diagnosis. It can create a false positive which would result in unnecessary treatment or a false negative which would withhold necessary treatment.
Schmidt, G. and Roberts, L. 2005. Foundations of Parasitology (7th ed.), New York: McGraw-Hill
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