Submitted to: American Journal of Veterinary Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/2/2002
Publication Date: 11/4/2002
Citation: Cassity, M.L., Dubey, J.P., Mather, T.N., Rhodes, R.C. 2002. Prevalence of toxoplasma gondii antibodies in rhode island cats and rodents. American Journal of Veterinary Research 63:1714-1717.
Interpretive Summary: Infections by the single-celled parasite Toxoplasma gondii are widely prevalent in humans and animals. It causes mental retardation and blindness in congenitally-infected children and abortion in livestock. Cats are the only reservoir hosts for this parasite because they excrete environmentally-resistant oocysts in their feces. Little is known of the prevalence of T. gondii in domestic animals. Scientists at the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center and the University of Rhode Island report antibodies to T. gondii in 42% of 200 cats from Rhode Island. These findings would be of interest to biologists, parasitologists, pathologists, veterinarians and public health workers.
Technical Abstract: Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite. Infection with this parasite is one of the most widespread parasitic infections in human beings and other warm-blooded animals. T. gondii is found worldwide and it is estimated that approximately 25-50% of the total human population has been exposed.