A comparative morphometric study was performed to identify host-induced morphological alterations in Schistosoma mansoni
adult worms. A wild parasite population was obtained from a naturally infected rodent ( Nectomys squamipes
) and then recovered from laboratory infected C3H/He mice. Furthermore, allopatric worm populations maintained for long-term under laboratory conditions in Swiss Webster mice were passed on to N. squamipes
. Suckers and genital system (testicular lobes, uterine egg, and egg spine) were analyzed by a digital system for image analysis. Confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) showed details of the genital system (testicular lobes, vitelline glands, and ovary) and the tegument just below the ventral sucker. Significant morphological changes (p < 0.05) were detected in male worms in all experimental conditions, with no significant variability as assessed by CLSM. Significant changes (p < 0.05) were evident in females from the wild population related to their ovaries and vitelline glands, whereas allopatric females presented differences only in this last character. We conclude that S. mansoni worms present the phenotypic plasticity induced by modifications in the parasite's microenvironment, mainly during the first passage under laboratory conditions.