Prenatal depression and anxiety in Toxoplasma gondii-positive women

University of South Florida, Tampa, 33612, USA.
American journal of obstetrics and gynecology (Impact Factor: 4.7). 02/2011; 204(5):433.e1-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.ajog.2011.01.004
Source: PubMed


This study analyzed a relationship between prenatal mood states and serologic evidence of immune response to Toxoplasma gondii. A secondary aim was to determine whether thyroid peroxidase autoantibody status was related to T gondii status.
Pregnant women (n = 414) were measured at 16-25 weeks' gestation with demographic and mood questionnaires and a blood draw. All plasma samples were analyzed for thyroid peroxidase and T gondii immunoglobulin G, tryptophan, kynurenine, and neopterin. T gondii serotypes were also measured in the women who were T gondii positive. Cytokines were available on a subset (n = 142).
Women with serologic evidence of exposure to T gondii (n = 44) showed positive correlations between immunoglobulin G levels and the Profile of Mood States depression and anxiety subscales. Plasma tumor necrosis factor-α was higher in women who were positive for T gondii. Serotypes were type I (27%), type II (31%), and unclassified (42%, which shows intermediate levels of reactivity). The depression and anxiety scores were highest in type I, but this was not significant. The Profile of Mood States vigor score was lowest in type II, compared with the type I or unclassified groups.
Higher T gondii immunoglobulin G titers in infected women were related to anxiety and depression during pregnancy. Subclinical reactivation of T gondii or immune responses to T gondii may worsen mood in pregnant women.

Download full-text


Available from: Dietmar Fuchs, Jul 31, 2014
22 Reads
  • Source
    • "While chronic infection is considered " non-pathogenic " in immunocompetent human hosts, evidence suggests that T. gondii engages in manipulation of host biology and behavior (Flegr, 2013; Kaushik et al., 2012), and has been epidemiologically linked to a growing list of psychiatric disorders in humans (Groer et al., 2011; Miman et al., 2010; Pearce et al., 2012; Pedersen et al., 2012; Torrey et al., 2007). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) is one of the world’s most successful brain parasites. T. gondii engages in parasite manipulation of host behavior and infection has been epidemiologically linked to numerous psychiatric disorders. Mechanisms by which T. gondii alters host behavior are not well understood, but neuroanatomical cyst presence and the localized host immune response to cysts are potential candidates. The aim of these studies was to test the hypothesis that T. gondii manipulation of specific host behaviors is dependent on neuroanatomical location of cysts in a time-dependent function post-infection. We examined neuroanatomical cyst distribution (53 forebrain regions) in infected rats after predator odor aversion behavior and anxiety-related behavior in the elevated plus maze and open field arena, across a 6-week time course. In addition, we examined evidence for microglial response to the parasite across the time course. Our findings demonstrate that while cysts are randomly distributed throughout the forebrain, individual variation in cyst localization, beginning 3 weeks post-infection, can explain individual variation in the effects of T. gondii on behavior. Additionally, not all infected rats develop cysts in the forebrain, and attenuation of predator odor aversion and changes in anxiety-related behavior are linked with cyst presence in specific forebrain areas. Finally, the immune response to cysts is striking. These data provide the foundation for testing hypotheses about proximate mechanisms by which T. gondii alters behavior in specific brain regions, including consequences of establishment of a homeostasis between T. gondii and the host immune response.
    Brain Behavior and Immunity 01/2013; 37. DOI:10.1016/j.bbi.2013.11.012 · 5.89 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "Groër et al. observed higher titers of T. gondii IgG antibody was positively correlated with depression and anxiety in women during pregnancy. Indeed, depression and anxiety in pregnant women infected with genotype I T. gondii were highest than other genotypes; but this was not significant (64). Mothers with high titers of T. gondii IgG antibodies had significantly higher risk of schizophrenia spectrum disorders (65). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Toxoplasmosis is one of the most common parasitic diseases worldwide. Although estimated that one third of the world's population are infected with Toxoplasma gondii, but the most common form of the disease is latent (asymptomatic). On the other hand, recent findings indicated that latent toxoplasmosis is not only unsafe for human, but also may play various roles in the etiology of different mental disorders. This paper reviews new findings about importance of latent toxoplasmosis (except in immunocompromised patients) in alterations of behavioral parameters and also its role in the etiology of schizophrenia and depressive disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, Alzheimer's diseases and Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, headache and or migraine, mental retardation and intelligence quotients, suicide attempt, risk of traffic accidents, sex ratio and some possible mechanisms of T. gondii that could contribute in the etiology of these alterations.
    Iranian Journal of Parasitology 03/2012; 7(1):1-17. · 0.86 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Echinococcosis or hydatidosis is a chronic, zoonotic worldwide infection that occurs by the larval stages of taeniid cestodes of the genus Echinococcus. Iran is known as endemic region for this infection in the world. Vaccination has been considered as a good prevention method for this disease. Recombinant vaccines containing EG95 protein, against E. granulosus, has shown a high degree of protection against E. granulosus infection. In this study EG95 gene was extracted from Iranian isolates of E. granulosus and then cloned and expressed in expression vector. Protoscoleces were collected from sheep hydatid cysts. Then DNA and RNA were extracted from protoscoleces, and amplified by PCR and RT-PCR with specific primer. Afterward the purified RT-PCR products were successfully ligated into pTZ57R/T plasmid vector. The pcDNA3 plasmid was used as expression vector and Eg95 fragment sub cloned into this plasmid. The pcEG95 plasmid was digested by restriction enzymes to confirm cloning of this gene in pcDNA3 plasmid. In last step, the subcloned gene was expressed in CHO as eukaryotic cell. EG95 fragment successfully was subcloned in pcDNA3 and EG95 protein was expressed by eukaryotic cell. The recombinant EG95 protein was confirmed by SDS-PAGE and Western blot. Recombinant plasmid of pcEG95 was constructed successfully and express of recombinant EG95 protein was confirmed.
    03/2012; 7(2):1-7.
Show more