Friday, April 18, 2008

Toxoplasma infection in horses. Giddyup.

Parassitologia. 2007 Jun;49(1-2):7-15.

Toxoplasma gondii infection in horses. A review

Tassi P.

Dipartimento di Sanità e Benessere degli Animali, Università degli Studi di Bari, Italy.

This review updates those written by Dubey and Beattie in 1988 (1988a) and by Tenter et al in 2000, on pathological and epidemiological aspects of Toxoplasma infection in horses. Under natural conditions, seroprevalence may variate from 0% up to 90%. This wide variation may be due to the sensitivity of the serological methods, to the age of animals, to the geographical area, and even to the hygienic condition of the farms and farm management. With few exceptions, horses are considered one of the less sensitive specie to the pathogenic effect of Toxoplasma gondii. In fact, neither under experimental nor under natural condition a genuine pathologic picture related to the toxoplasmic infection has been described. In one occasion the organism has been isolated from an eye condition and in others a connection between a higher frequency of unspecified pathological conditions and a positive response to serological test for Toxoplasma has been speculated. Diaplacental transmission and the following abortion have been only occasionally reported, and at least in one case in a quite trustworthy way, therefore it must be considered possible, though rare. Although infection of humans due to the consumption of horse meat has never been reported, the existence of a possible risk arouses by the demonstration of the presence of parasite stages in either naturally or experimentally infected horses, which resulted to be infective for mice and/or cats.

PMID: 18412038 [PubMed - in process]

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