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      Toxoplasma gondii infection in meat animals from Africa: Systematic review and meta-analysis of sero-epidemiological studies

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          Toxoplasma gondii is an ubiquitous apicomplexan parasite which causes toxoplasmosis in humans and animals. Felids especially cats are definitive hosts and almost all warm-blooded mammals, including livestock and human can serve as intermediate hosts. Food animals can be reservoirs for T. gondii and act as one of the sources for parasite transmission to humans. The objective of this study is to collect serological data on the prevalence of anti- T. gondii antibody, and risk factors for certain food animals from Africa to provide a quantitative estimate of T. gondii infection among these species from different African countries.

          Materials and Methods:

          Four databases were used to search seroepidemiological data on the prevalence of anti- T. gondii antibody in food animals between 1969 and 2016 from African countries. The search focused on data obtained by serologic test in food animals and meta-analyses were performed per species.


          A total of 30,742 individual samples from 24 countries, described in 68 articles were studied. The overall estimated prevalence for toxoplasmosis in chicken, camel, cattle, sheep, goat, pig were 37.4% (29.2-46.0%), 36% (18-56%), 12% (8-17%), 26.1% (17.0-37.0%), 22.9% (12.3-36.0%), and 26.0% (20-32.0%), respectively. Moreover, major risk factor of infection was age, farming system, and farm location.


          A significant variation in the seroepidemiological data was observed within each species and country. The results can aid in an updated epidemiological analysis but also can be used as an important input in quantitative microbial risk assessment models. Further studies are required for a better and continual evaluation of the occurrence of this zoonotic infection.

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          Most cited references 111

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          Effects of environmental change on emerging parasitic diseases.

          Ecological disturbances exert an influence on the emergence and proliferation of malaria and zoonotic parasitic diseases, including, Leishmaniasis, cryptosporidiosis, giardiasis, trypanosomiasis, schistosomiasis, filariasis, onchocerciasis, and loiasis. Each environmental change, whether occurring as a natural phenomenon or through human intervention, changes the ecological balance and context within which disease hosts or vectors and parasites breed, develop, and transmit disease. Each species occupies a particular ecological niche and vector species sub-populations are distinct behaviourally and genetically as they adapt to man-made environments. Most zoonotic parasites display three distinct life cycles: sylvatic, zoonotic, and anthroponotic. In adapting to changed environmental conditions, including reduced non-human population and increased human population, some vectors display conversion from a primarily zoophyllic to primarily anthrophyllic orientation. Deforestation and ensuing changes in landuse, human settlement, commercial development, road construction, water control systems (dams, canals, irrigation systems, reservoirs), and climate, singly, and in combination have been accompanied by global increases in morbidity and mortality from emergent parasitic disease. The replacement of forests with crop farming, ranching, and raising small animals can create supportive habitats for parasites and their host vectors. When the land use of deforested areas changes, the pattern of human settlement is altered and habitat fragmentation may provide opportunities for exchange and transmission of parasites to the heretofore uninfected humans. Construction of water control projects can lead to shifts in such vector populations as snails and mosquitoes and their parasites. Construction of roads in previously inaccessible forested areas can lead to erosion, and stagnant ponds by blocking the flow of streams when the water rises during the rainy season. The combined effects of environmentally detrimental changes in local land use and alterations in global climate disrupt the natural ecosystem and can increase the risk of transmission of parasitic diseases to the human population.
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            Toxoplasmosis: A history of clinical observations.

            It has been 100 years since Toxoplasma gondii was initially described in Tunis by Nicolle and Manceaux (1908) in the tissues of the gundi (Ctenodoactylus gundi) and in Brazil by Splendore (1908) in the tissues of a rabbit. Toxoplasma gondii is a ubiquitous, Apicomplexan parasite of warm-blooded animals that can cause several clinical syndromes including encephalitis, chorioretinitis, congenital infection and neonatal mortality. Fifteen years after the description of T. gondii by Nicolle and Manceaux a fatal case of toxoplasmosis in a child was reported by Janků. In 1939 Wolf, Cowen and Paige were the first to conclusively identify T. gondii as a cause of human disease. This review examines the clinical manifestations of infection with T. gondii and the history of the discovery of these manifestations.
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              Toxoplasmosis of animals and humans


                Author and article information

                Vet World
                Vet World
                Veterinary World
                Veterinary World (India )
                February 2017
                16 February 2017
                : 10
                : 2
                : 194-208
                [1 ]Laboratory of Research in Applied Biology, Polytechnic School of Abomey-Calavi, University of Abomey-Calavi, 01 P.O. Box 2009, Cotonou, Benin
                [2 ]Laboratory of Ecology, Health and animal Production, Faculty of Agronomy, University of Parakou, P.O. Box 123 Parakou, Benin
                [3 ]Department of Veterinary Medicine and Public Health, Sokoine University of Agriculture, P.O. Box 3121, Chuo Kikoo, Morogoro, Tanzania
                Author notes
                Copyright: © Tonouhewa, et al.

                Open Access. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Research Article

                animal health, meta-analysis, toxoplasmosis, zoonosis


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