Coming soon Exhibition National Museum of Scotland

Parasites: Battle for Survival

6 Dec 2019 - 19 Apr 2020

Exhibition Gallery 2, Level 3


Join the battle against five tropical diseases and the parasites that cause them in this interactive exhibition and discover how scientific research taking place in Scotland is leading the way in this field.

Affecting one in 18 people across the globe, the exhibition focuses on five of the world’s deadliest parasites and the diseases they cause: malaria, guinea worm disease, sleeping sickness, schistosomiasis and leishmaniasis. These are among a range of diseases which the World Health Organization is aiming to eliminate, some as soon as 2020, with research centres in Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow at the forefront of these efforts

Female malaria mosquito blood feeding © Sinclair Stammers/Reece

Female malaria mosquito blood feeding © Sinclair Stammers/Reece 

Boat with tsetse fly trap © Vincent Jamonneau IRD

Boat with tsetse fly trap © Vincent Jamonneau IRD

Testing in the field © C Faust

Testing in the field © C Faust

Through current research, cutting edge technologies and interactive exhibits, learn more about sneaky parasites, discover how they are transmitted to humans, how the diseases they cause were discovered, and the ways in which these deadly parasites are fighting back against modern medicine.

‘Stumpy form’ trypanosomes required for disease transmission © University of Edinburgh / Mathews Lab

Urine filtration of samples to detect S. haematobium eggs at one of our field sites. © Parasite  Immuno-epidemiology group

Diagnosing sleeping sickness in West Africa © University of Glasgow

Getting here

National Museum of Scotland
Chambers Street


Map and directions


We want everyone who comes to our museums to enjoy their time with us and make the most of their visit. 


  • There is level access to the Museum via the main doors to the Entrance Hall on Chambers Street and the Tower entrance at the corner of Chambers Street and George IV Bridge. 
  • Lifts are available to all floors and accessible toilets are available on most floors, as well as a Changing Places (U) toilet in the Entrance Hall on Level 0.
  • There is an induction loop in the Auditorium.
  • Guide dogs, hearing dogs and other recognised assistance dogs are admitted.


Find out more about our access information.

Header image: Looking at research images © Julia Wcislo at the University of Dundee

Explore more

Spotlight On: Parasites

Join curator Sophie Goggins to explore the fight to eliminate five parasitic tropical diseases and the role of research taking place in Scotland to do this.

Autism After Hours

Visit the museum on your own terms once the public have gone home.

Parasites Exhibition (S1-6)

Visit this interactive STEM exhibition to discover more about fight to eradicate five neglected parasitic tropical diseases.
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