|DUBEY JITENDER P|
|GOODWIN M A|
|RUFF MICHAEL D|
|SHEN SAMUEL K|
|KWOK OLIVER C H|
Submitted to: Avian Pathology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/15/1994
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Infection by the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii is widely prevalent in animals and man. Birds and rodents are important hosts of T. gondii because they serve as source of T. gondii infection for cats. Cats excrete the environmentally resistant T. gondii oocysts in their feces after ingesting tissue cysts of T. gondii from infected animals. Toxoplasma infection in ground feeding birds is also a good indicator of T. gondii infection in the soil because of their eating habits. Nothing is known of diagnosis of toxoplasmosis in chukars. Scientists at the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center have developed a serologic test for the diagnosis of toxoplasmosis in chukar partridges. The results will be helpful in the diagnosis of toxoplasmosis in chukars and other avian species.
Technical Abstract: Thirty battery-hatched chukars (Alectoris graeca) were inoculated orally with oocysts of the ME 49 or the GT-1 strain of Toxoplasma gondii. All 6 chukars given 10,000 GT-1 strain oocysts died between postinoculation day (PID) 3 and 6. Fifteen of 24 chukars given 10,000, 1,000, 100 or 10 ME 49 strain oocysts died of acute toxoplasmosis between PID 6 and 14. Toxoplasma gondii was found by bioassays in mice inoculated with tissues of the 9 remaining chukars euthanatized between PID 47 and 67. From the tissues of 5 chukars bioassayed individually in mice, T. gondii was isolated from brains of 4 of 4 tested, and from the hearts and skeletal muscles of 5 chukars, and livers of 3 of 5 chukars tested. Major lesions in chukars that died were enteritis, splenic necrosis, myocarditis and encephalitis. Myocarditis and encephalitis persisted in chukars examined PID 47, 53 and 67. All chukars examined PID 10 developed T. gondii antibodies. Anti-T. gondii antibodies detected in the modified agglutination test were higher than those in latex and hemagglutination tests. The Sabin-Feldman dye test did not detect T. gondii antibodies in sera of chukars. The ME 49 strain of T. gondii was more pathogenic to chukars weighing 300 g than the 25 Swiss Webster mice.