The prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in free-ranging chickens is a good indicator of the prevalence of T. gondii oocysts in the soil because chickens feed from the ground. The prevalence of T. gondii in 50 free-range chickens (Gallus domesticus) from Guatemala was determined. Antibodies to T. gondii were assayed by the modified agglutination test (MAT). Antibodies were found in 37 (74%) chickens with titers of 1:5 (11), 1:10 (7), 1:20 (11), 1:40 (1), 1:80 (1), 1:160 (3), 1:1,280 (2), and 1:2,560 (1). Hearts, pectoral muscles, and brains of 19 chickens with MAT titers of 1:20 or more were bioassayed individually in mice. Tissues from the remaining 31 chickens with titers of 1:10 or lower were pooled and fed to 4 T. gondii–free cats (13 chickens with titers of less than 1:5 to 1 cat, 11 chickens with titers of 1:5 to 2 cats, and 7 chickens with titers of 1:10 to 1 cat). Feces of cats were examined for oocysts; they did not shed oocysts. Toxoplasma gondii was isolated from 8 chickens with MAT titers of 1:20 or more (from 1 of 11 chickens with a titer of 1:20 and all 7 chickens with a titer of 1:80 or more) from the heart, brain, and pectoral muscle (3); heart and pectoral muscle (1); and heart alone (4). Genotyping of these 8 isolates with the SAG2 locus indicated that 5 were type III and 3 were type I. This is the first report of isolation of T. gondii from chickens from Guatemala.
Isolation, Tissue Distribution, and Molecular Characterization of Toxoplasma gondii From Free-Range Chickens From Guatemala
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J. P. Dubey, B. Lopez, M. Alvarez, C. Mendoza, T. Lehmann; Isolation, Tissue Distribution, and Molecular Characterization of Toxoplasma gondii From Free-Range Chickens From Guatemala. J Parasitol 1 August 2005; 91 (4): 955–957. doi: https://doi.org/10.1645/GE-493R.1
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