Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: May 5, 2004
Publication Date: May 24, 2004
Citation: Dubey, J.P., Lindsay, D.S. 2004. Biology of toxoplasma gondii in cats and other animals. In: Lindsay,D>S>, Weiss, L.M. eds. Opportunistic infections: Toxoplasma, Sarcocystis, and microsporida, Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston, 1-19.
Interpretive Summary: Infection by single-celled parasite Toxoplasma gondii is common in humans and animals. In the present paper scientists from the Beltsville Agricultural Reserch Center and the Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, review current status of toxplasmoisis in cats. The results will be of interest to biologists, parasitologists, veterinarians and public health workers.
Toxoplasma gondii is a protozoan parasite of warm-blooded animals including humans. It has a worldwide distribution. Cats, including all felines, are its definitive hosts and excrete environmentally-resistant oocysts in their feces. Hosts become infected by ingesting food or drink contaminated with oocysts or by ingesting undercooked meat infected with T. gondii. It causes mental retardation and loss of vision in congenitally-infected children and abortion in livestock. This chapter describes life cycle, epidemiology, diagnosis, and prevention of T. gondii in humans and animals.