Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum in wildlife: Common parasites in Belgian foxes and Cervidae?

Scientific Institute of Public Health, Communicable and Infectious Diseases, National Reference Center for Toxoplasmosis, Engelandstraat 642, B1180 Brussels, Belgium.
Veterinary Parasitology (Impact Factor: 2.46). 12/2010; 178(1-2):64-9. DOI: 10.1016/j.vetpar.2010.12.016
Source: PubMed


Sera from Cervidae were tested for the presence of antibodies against Neospora caninum using ELISA; and against Toxoplasma gondii using SAG1-ELISA and a commercially available agglutination test. The T. gondii seroprevalence was 52% (38/73) in roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), 0% in bred fallow deer (0/4) (Dama dama) and red deer (0/7) (Cervus elaphus). We found 2.7% of the roe deer samples and none of the bred deer samples positive for N. caninum. Brain samples from wild roe deer, red deer and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) were tested for the presence of T. gondii and N. caninum DNA using multiplex real-time PCR. We detected T. gondii in 18.8% (57/304) of the red foxes and in 1 of the 33 deer samples. N. caninum was found in 6.6% of the red foxes and in 2 roe deer samples. Twenty-six of the T. gondii positive DNA extracts from the red fox samples were genotyped. Twenty-five were type II and only one was found to be type III.

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