Introduction: Schistosomiasis is a public health issue of concern in Gabon, with the disease being reported from all regions of the country. The topic has been of interest for the local researchers and physicians for over two decades. The objective of this narrative review was to provide an overview of the research activities in the area from 2000 to early 2021. Methods: We performed a narrative literature review. The search strategy was designed to get a broad overview of the different research topics on schistosomiasis and the national control programme, and included grey literature. Results: A total of 159 articles was screened, and 42 were included into the review in addition to the grey literature. During the past two decades, the work on schistosomiasis originated from five out of the nine provinces of the country, with diverse aspects of the disease investigated; including immunology, epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment. Several studies investigated various aspects of schistosomiasis-related morbidity in the respective study populations. The body of work demonstrates that much effort was made to understand the details of the host immune response to schistosomiasis, and the immune profile changes induced in patients treated with praziquantel. Although some MDA campaigns were conducted in the country; little, however, is known on the epidemiological situation of the disease, particularly of its distribution within the population, as well as co-infections with other parasitic diseases also endemic in the area. Conclusion: Progress has been made over the past two decades in the understanding of schistosomiasis in the country, including disease-related morbidity and its interaction with other parasitic infections, and the immunology and epidemiology of the disease. However, for optimising control of the disease, there is a need to fine-tune these findings with detailed local epidemiological and malacological data. We call for such studies to accomplish the knowledge of schistosomiasis in the country, particularly in areas of moderate or high endemicity, and recommend this approach to comparable schistosomiasis-endemic areas elsewhere.
- Narrative review