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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: PROTOZOAN PARASITES AFFECTING FOOD ANIMALS, FOOD SAFETY, AND PUBLIC HEALTH Title: Strains of Encephalitozoon cuniculi, Encephalitozoon intestinalis, and Encephalitozoon hellem fail to experimentally infect food animals.

Authors
item Li, Xunde -
item Fayer, Ronald
item Palmer, Robert -
item Trout, James -
item Chengling, Xiao -

Submitted to: Chinese Journal of Veterinary Medicine
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: October 1, 2009
Publication Date: November 1, 2009
Citation: Li, X., Fayer, R., Palmer, R., Trout, J., Chengling, X. 2009. Strains of Encephalitozoon cuniculi, Encephalitozoon intestinalis, and Encephalitozoon hellem fail to experimentally infect food animals. Chinese Journal of Veterinary Medicine. 29(11):1419-1423.

Interpretive Summary: Species of Encephalitozoon are microscopic, single-celled parasites of humans and other animals. The present study investigated the infectivity of strains of the three most prevalent species of Encephalitozoon found in humans to determine if they were also infectious for food animals including pigs, cattle, chickens and turkeys and therefore might be a concern for food safety. Animals were orally inoculated with spores grown in cell cultures and infections were determined by detection of spores in daily fecal samples and by microscopic examination of histologic specimens of organs from inoculated animals. Infections were not detected in any animals although each was orally inoculated with 2 to 20 million spores of each of the three species. Results indicated that the strains of E. intestinalis, E. hellem, and E. cuniculi in this study lacked infectivity in pigs, cattle, chickens and turkeys and therefore could indicate that some strains of these parasites are host-specific and not of concern to food safety

Technical Abstract: The present study investigated the infectivity of strains of three most common species of Encephalitozoon spp. (E. intestinalis, E. hellem, and E. cuniculi) in food animals including pigs, cattle, chickens and turkeys. Animals were orally inoculated with spores and infections were determined by detection of spores in daily fecal samples and by microscopic examination of histologic specimens from organs 21 days post inoculation. Infections were were not detected in any animals although each was orally inoculated with 2×106 to 2×107 spores of each of the three species. Results indicated that the strains of E. intestinalis, E. hellem, and E. cuniculi in this study lacked infectivity in pigs, cattle, chickens and turkeys

Last Modified: 12/21/2014
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