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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #306912

Title: Toxoplasma gondii isolates from mouflon sheep (Ovis ammon) from Hawaii, USA

item VERMA, SHIV - Non ARS Employee
item CHUNLEI, SU - University Of Tennessee
item Dubey, Jitender

Submitted to: Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/1/2014
Publication Date: 1/31/2015
Citation: Verma, S., Chunlei, S., Dubey, J.P. 2015. Toxoplasma gondii isolates from mouflon sheep (Ovis ammon) from Hawaii, USA. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology. 62(1):141-143. doi: 10.1111/jeu.12151.

Interpretive Summary: Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic infection of humans and animals and it continues to be public health and food safety issue. Humans becomeinfected with T. gondii by consuming infected uncooked meat or by the ingestion of food and water contaminated with the environmentallyresistant stage of the parasite (oocyst) excreted in cat feces.Consumption of undercooked game meat is a known source of Toxoplasma infection in humans and the viscera left open after dressing of game is a further source of environmental contamination. Mouflon sheep are prized sheep for hunting in Hawaii. The authors isolated viable Toxoplasma from hunted mouflon in the USA for the first time. The results will be of interest to biologists, and Parasitologists, and veterinarians.

Technical Abstract: Little is known of Toxoplasma gondii isolates circulating in wildlife. The mouflon (Ovis ammon) is very popular game animal, hunted for its trophy horns. Here, we report the isolation and genetic characterization of T. gondii from two mouflon from Hawaii, USA. Both sheep had antibodies titers of 1: 800 or higher. Viable T. gondii were isolated and nested PCR-RFLP genotyping, revealed two genotypes, a clonal Type III (designated TgMouflonUS1). The second has new genotype (designated TgMouflonUS2, and ToxoDB PCR-RFLP genotypes #249). This is the first report of T. gondii infection, isolation and genetic characterization in mouflon from the USA.