|ATTADEMO, FERNANDA - Federal Rural University Of Pernambuco|
|RIBEIRO, VANESSA - Federal Rural University Of Pernambuco|
|SOARES, HERBERT - Universidade De Sao Paulo|
|LUNA, FABIA - Instituto Chico Mendes De Conservacao Da Biodiversidade|
|SOUSA, GLAUCIA - Instituto Chico Mendes De Conservacao Da Biodiversidade|
|FREIRE, AUGUSTO - Instituto Mamiferos Aquaticos|
|GENNARI, SOLANGE - Universidade De Sao Paulo|
|ALVES, LEUCIO - Federal Rural University Of Pernambuco|
|MARVULO, MARIA FERNANDA - Brazilian Institute For Medical Conservação|
|SILVA, JEAN - Federal Rural University Of Pernambuco|
Submitted to: Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/26/2015
Publication Date: 6/20/2016
Citation: Attademo, F.L., Ribeiro, V.O., Soares, H.S., Luna, F.O., Sousa, G.P., Freire, A.C., Gennari, S.M., Alves, L.C., Marvulo, M.V., Dubey, J.P., Silva, J.C. 2016. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in captive antillean manatee (Trichechus manatus manatus) in Brazil. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine. 47:423-426.
Interpretive Summary: Toxoplasmosis, caused by the single celled parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, continues to be a public health problem worldwide. This parasites infects all warm-blooded hosts, including humans. It causes mental retardation and loss of vision in children, and abortion in livestock. The ingestion of food and water contaminated with resistant stage of the parasite, the oocyst, is now considered a major mode of transmission of this parasite. Of all the hosts infected, only cats are known to excrete oocysts in feces. Cats can excrete millions of oocysts after eating an infected prey, such as a mouse or a bird. Oocysts can survive outdoors for months. There are no efficient methods to assess the environmental contamination by oocysts. Here, we found antibodies to T. gondii in 10% of 55 manatees; these animals are endangered and herbivores. The presence of antibodies in manatees indicates contamination of water with oocysts.These results will be of interest to biologists, parasitologists, and epidemiologists.
Technical Abstract: Antillean manatees (Trichechus manatus manatus) are aquatic mammals that inhabit marine waters from Central America to the northeastern region of Brazil and they are an endangered species. Infection with Toxoplasma gondii through intake of water or food contaminated with oocysts has been reported among marine mammals. The present study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of antibodies to T. gondii in West Indian manatees living in captivity in northeastern Brazil. Serum samples from 55 West Indian manatees from three different captive groups were tested for T. gondii antibodies by means of the modified agglutination test (MAT) using a cut-off of 1:25. The samples were screened at dilutions of 1:25, 1:50 and 1:500 and positive samples were end-titrated using two-fold serial dilutions; antibodies were found in six Antillean manatees (10.9%) with titers of 1:50 in three, 1:500 in one, 1:3,200 in one, and 1:51,200 in one. This study is the first report of T. gondii antibodies in captive Antillean manatees in Brazil.