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      Toxoplasma gondii in wild and domestic animals from New Caledonia Translated title: Toxoplasma gondii chez des animaux sauvages et domestiques en Nouvelle-Calédonie

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          Samples (serum or meat juice) collected from 205 animals in New Caledonia in April 2009 were tested for antibodies against Toxoplasma gondii by ELISA using the multi-species ID Screen ® Toxoplasmosis Indirect kit (IDVET, Montpellier). Antibodies to T. gondii were detected in 2% (1/49) of the pigs, in 3.3% (1/30) of the cattle, in 13.8% (4/29) of Rusa deers, in 16% (4/25) of the horses, in 32.8% (21/64) of the dogs, and in 50% (4/8) of cats. Statistically, no significant difference was observed between T. gondii seroprevalence and age or sex. No survey on the prevalence of T. gondii in animals has ever been conducted in New Caledonia and this is the first serological evidence of T. gondii in Rusa deer ( Cervus timorensis russa). These results indicate an important circulation of T. gondii exists in the animal populations of New Caledonia. In view of humans being exposed, it is advisable to insist on sanitary education and on respect for good hygienic and food practice.

          Translated abstract

          205 échantillons de deux types (sang ou muscle) ont été recueillis en avril 2009 en Nouvelle-Calédonie. Une recherche sérologique sur sérum et sur fluide musculaire a été menée par la technique ELISA à l’aide du kit multi-espèce ID Screen ® Toxoplasmosis Indirect (IDVET, Montpellier) pour la détection d’anticorps dirigés contre la protéine P30 de Toxoplasma gondii. Les résultats montrent une séropositivité de 2 % (1/49) chez les porcs, 3,3 % (1/30) chez les bovins, 13,8 % (4/29) chez les cerfs, 16 % (4/25) chez les chevaux, 32,8 % (21/64) chez les chiens et 50 % (4/8) chez les chats. D’après nos résultats, ni le sexe, ni l’âge de l’animal n’interviennent de façon statistiquement significative sur sa positivité vis-à-vis de T. gondii. À notre connaissance, c’est la première fois qu’une enquête sérologique est menée sur des animaux en Nouvelle-Calédonie, et la première mise en évidence sérologique du parasite chez le cerf rusa ( Cervus timorensis russa). Ces résultats sérologiques indiquent une circulation importante de T. gondii dans les populations animales de Nouvelle-Calédonie. L’homme étant particulièrement exposé, il convient, tout particulièrement, d’insister sur l’éducation sanitaire et sur le respect des bonnes pratiques hygiéniques et alimentaires.

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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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            Prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in commercial meat products as monitored by polymerase chain reaction--food for thought?

            DNA was extracted from 71 meat samples obtained from UK retail outlets. All of these DNA preparations gave the expected polymerase chain reaction products when amplified with primers specific for the species from which the meat originated. A second polymerase chain reaction analysis, using primers specific for the Toxoplasma gondii SAG2 locus, revealed the presence of this parasite in 27 of the meat samples. Restriction analysis and DNA sequencing showed that 21 of the contaminated meats contained parasites genotyped as type I at the SAG2 locus, whilst six of the samples contained parasites of both types I and II. Toxoplasma- positive samples were subjected to further polymerase chain reaction analysis to determine whether any carried an allele of the dihydropteroate synthase gene that has recently been shown to be causally associated with sulfonamide resistance in T. gondii. In all cases, this analysis confirmed that parasites were present in the samples and, additionally, revealed that none of them carried the drug-resistant form of dihydropteroate synthase. These results suggest that a significant proportion of meats commercially available in the UK are contaminated with T. gondii. Although none of the parasites detected in this study carried the sulfonamide-resistance mutation, a simplified procedure for monitoring this situation merits development.
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              Detection of T. gondii in tissues of sheep and cattle following oral infection.

              It has been reported in the literature that cattle are more resistant to toxoplasmosis than sheep. Congenital disease due to T. gondii infection is rarely reported in cattle whereas the parasite is a major cause of abortion and neonatal mortality in sheep. It is believed that sheep remain chronically infected for life. Undercooked meat from infected sheep is an important source of infection for man. In contrast cattle are thought to harbour fewer parasite tissue cysts which may not persist for the lifetime of the host. Therefore, cattle are believed to pose less of a risk for human infection. In this study we examined the presence of T. gondii within a range of tissues in sheep and cattle at 6 weeks and 6 months following oral infection with 10(3) or 10(5) sporulated oocysts of T. gondii. The presence of parasite was determined by bioassay in mice and using polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The results from this study show that T. gondii was more frequently and consistently detected in sheep, in particular within brain and heart tissues, whereas parasites were not detected in the samples of tissues taken from cattle. T. gondii was more frequently detected in sheep given the higher dose of T. gondii. Examination of tissues at either 6 weeks or 6 months after infection did not appear to affect the distribution of T. gondii. The polymerase chain reaction has more specificity and sensitivity when detecting the presence of T. gondii in large animals than histological detection.

                Author and article information

                EDP Sciences
                November 2011
                15 November 2011
                : 18
                : 4 ( publisher-idID: parasite/2011/04 )
                : 345-348
                [1 ] Groupe de travail en épidémiologie animale du Service de Santé des Armées Marseille France
                [2 ] ANSES, ENVA, UPEC-UMR BIPAR, École nationale vétérinaire d’Alfort Maisons-Alfort France
                [3 ] Direction interarmées du Service de Santé des Forces Armées en Nouvelle-Calédonie Nouméa Nouvelle-Calédonie
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence: Cédric Roqueplo. E-mail: cedric.roqueplo@ 123456wanadoo.fr
                parasite2011184p345 10.1051/parasite/2011184345
                © PRINCEPS Editions, Paris, 2011

                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: 1, Equations: 0, References: 24, Pages: 4
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