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      Seroprevalence and risk factors associated with ovine toxoplasmosis in Northeast Brazil Translated title: Séroprévalence et facteurs de risque associés à la toxoplasmose ovine dans le Nord-Est du Brésil

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          Serum samples of 930 sheep were tested by ELISA to assess the prevalence of anti- Toxoplasma gondii antibodies and to identify risk factors associated with the presence of toxoplasmosis in two regions of Rio Grande do Norte (Northeast Brazil), with different climatic conditions. The overall estimated prevalence was 22.1%, with 26.3% and 17.8% positive sheep in Leste Potiguar and Central Potiguar regions, respectively. Among the positive sheep, 18.1% had low-avidity IgG antibodies, suggesting the occurrence of recent toxoplasmosis. The risk factors for toxoplasmosis in sheep were: presence of cats (odds ratio (OR) = 1.55; confidence interval (CI) 95% = 1.11–2.16), age of the animals, with adults presenting a greater chance of infection (OR = 2.44; CI 95% = 1.58–3.75), and the use of running water (OR = 1.61; CI 95% = 1.25–2.09), characterizing the existence of transmission by sporulated oocysts of T. gondii in the environment.

          Translated abstract

          Des échantillons de sérum de 930 moutons ont été analysés par le test ELISA dans le but d’évaluer la prévalence d’anticorps anti- Toxoplasma gondii et d’identifier les facteurs de risque associés à la présence de toxoplasmose chez les ovins dans deux régions de l’État de Rio Grande do Norte (Nord-Est du Brésil), ayant des conditions climatiques distinctes. La prévalence estimée était de 22.1 %, dont 26.3 % et 17.8 % de moutons positifs, respectivement, dans les régions Leste Potiguar et Central Potiguar. Chez les moutons positifs, 18,1 % ont présenté des anticorps IgG de basse-avidité, suggérant des événements récents de toxoplasmose. Les facteurs de risque associés à l’infection étaient : la présence de chats (rapport de cotes 1.55 ; intervalle de confiance 95 % 1.11-2.16), l’âge des animaux, les adultes ayant une plus grande chance d’infection (rc 2.44 ; ic 95 % 1.58-3.75), et l’utilisation d’eau courante (rc 1.61; ic 95 % 1.25-2.09), caractérisant ainsi l’existence de transmission par oocystes sporulés de T. gondii dans l’environnement.

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          An innovative survey underlining the significant level of contamination by Toxoplasma gondii of ovine meat consumed in France.

          Consumption of sheep meat presents a risk of human contamination by Toxoplasma gondii. A nationwide study was conducted in France to evaluate the prevalence of Toxoplasma in fresh ovine meat. A sampling procedure was established to guarantee the representativity of consumption. As is the case for meat consumed, half of the samples were from France and half were imported from other countries. Animals were selected according to their age, as lamb (<12months) represents 90% of the meat consumed. Available data for French samples allowed the selection of 16 districts distributed in seven areas according to their density of production. Diaphragms and hearts from 433 sheep were collected. Diaphragms were collected from 398 imported carcasses. Fluids from hearts and diaphragms were tested serologically. All hearts were bioassayed in mice and parasite isolates were genotyped using PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism and microsatellite markers. Prevalence estimates were calculated, taking into account uneven distribution of production and age. For French meat, the effect of area, age and their interactions was evaluated. The overall estimate of Toxoplasma seroprevalence was 17.7% (11.6-31.5%) for lambs and 89% (73.5-100%) for adults (P<0.0001). No significant difference was observed between imported and French meat. In France, seroprevalence in lambs showed an increasing North-western to Southern gradient. The proportion of French carcasses carrying live parasites according to bioassay results was estimated at 5.4% (3-7.5%) (45 genotype II; one genotype III). This study offers an accurate drawing of the toxoplasmosis pattern amongst sheep consumed in France and a model for a zoonosis hazard control survey. 2009 Australian Society for Parasitology Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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            Toxoplasmosis: beyond animals to humans.

            The parasitic zoonosis toxoplasmosis, which was poorly understood before the advent of the HIV epidemic, has become a major clinical problem worldwide. Humans acquire toxoplasmosis from cats, from consuming raw or undercooked meat and from vertical transmission to the foetus through the placenta during pregnancy. Studies of the unique environmental factors in various communities indicate the important roles that eating habits and culture have on the transmission of this infection. The socioepidemiological aspects of toxoplasmosis are thought to be important contributing factors for the spread of this disease. Preventative measures should consider the cultures and beliefs of people in various communities more than solving poverty and giving orthodox health education.
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              Oral oocyst-induced mouse model of toxoplasmosis: effect of infection with Toxoplasma gondii strains of different genotypes, dose, and mouse strains (transgenic, out-bred, in-bred) on pathogenesis and mortality.

              Humans and other hosts acquire Toxoplasma gondii infection by ingesting tissue cysts in undercooked meat, or by food or drink contaminated with oocysts. Currently, there is no vaccine to prevent clinical disease due this parasite in humans, although, various T. gondii vaccine candidates are being developed. Mice are generally used to test the protective efficacy of vaccines because they are susceptible, reagents are available to measure immune parameters in mice, and they are easily managed in the laboratory. In the present study, pathogenesis of toxoplasmosis was studied in mice of different strains, including Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) transgenic mice infected with different doses of T. gondii strains of different genotypes derived from several countries. Based on many experiments, the decreasing order of infectivity and pathogenicity of oocysts was: C57BL/6 background interferon gamma gene knock out (KO), HLA-A*1101, HLA-A*0201, HLA-B*0702, Swiss Webster, C57/black, and BALB/c. Mice fed as few as 1 oocyst of Type I and several atypical strains died of acute toxoplasmosis within 21 days p.i. Some Type II, and III strains were less virulent. The model developed herein should prove to be extremely useful for testing vaccines because it is possible to accurately quantitate a challenge inoculum, test the response to different strains of T. gondii using the same preparations of oocysts which are stable for up to a year, and to have highly reproducible responses to the infection.

                Author and article information

                EDP Sciences
                28 May 2013
                : 20
                : ( publisher-idID: parasite/2013/01 )
                [1 ] Departamento de Parasitologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, UFMG, Belo Horizonte MG Brazil
                [2 ] Departamento de Microbiologia e Parasitologia, Centro de Biociências, UFRN Natal RN Brazil
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author: ricardovitor@ 123456icb.ufmg.br
                parasite120024 10.1051/parasite/2013019
                © M.M.C. Andrade et al., published by EDP Sciences, 2013

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 2, Equations: 0, References: 31, Pages: 5
                Research Article

                seroprevalence, toxoplasma gondii, sheep, elisa


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