|Costa Junior, L.m|
|Ramos Silva, J.c|
Submitted to: Journal of Parasitology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/1/2008
Publication Date: 2/15/2009
Citation: Oliveira, L., Costa Junior, L., Melo, C., Ramos Silva, J., Bevilaqua, C., Azevedo, S., Muradian, V., Araujo, D., Dubey, J.P., Gennari, S. 2009. Toxoplasma gondii isolates from free-range chickens from the northeast region of Brazil. Journal of Parasitology. 95:235-237. Interpretive Summary: Toxoplasma gondii is a single-celled parasite of all warm-blooded hosts worldwide. It causes mental retardation and loss of vision in children, and abortion in livestock. Cats are the main reservoir of T. gondii because they are the only hosts that can excrete the resistant stage (oocyst) of the parasite in the feces. Humans become infected by eating undercooked meat from infected animals and food and water contaminated with oocysts. Scientists at the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center and an university in Brazil report prevalence of Toxoplasma in chickens in Brazil. The results will be of interest to biologists, parasitologists, and veterinarians
Technical Abstract: The prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in free-ranging chickens is a good indicator of the prevalence of T. gondii oocysts in the soil because chickens feed from the ground. The prevalence of T. gondii in 152 free-range chickens (Gallus domesticus) from 22 municipalities in 7 northeastern states (Pernambuco, Rio Grande do Norte, Maranhão, Bahia, Ceará, Sergipe, and Alagoas) of Brazil was determined. Antibodies to T. gondii were assayed by the modified agglutination test (MAT); 81 (53.3 %) chickens had titers of 1:5 in 26, 1:10 in 9, 1:20 in 4, 1: 40 in 1, 1: 80 in 6, 1: 160 in 6, 1:320 in 13, 1: 640 in 6, 1:1,280 in 3, 1:2,560 in 6, and 1:5,120 or higher in 1. Hearts and brains of 81 seropositive chickens were bioassayed individually in mice. Toxoplasma gondii was isolated from 23 chickens with MAT titers of 1:5 or higher; the isolates were designated TgCKBr165-187. Five isolates killed all infected mice. Results indicate widespread contamination of rural environment in Brazil with T. gondii oocysts.