Toxoplasma gondii
Phylum Apicomplexa; causative agent of toxoplasmosis; invasive stage has apical complex
Intermediate Host: ANY mammal (even huuman)
Life Stages Toxoplasma
Oocyst –> Cyst –> Tachyzoite
Passed out non-sporulated and then sporulates out in environment
Most common transmission of toxoplasmosis (other than gardening) is cysts in meat
Euryxenous Parasite
Broad/wide host range
30-40% of U.S. adults are seropositive
Acquired Toxoplasmosis
Feline feces containing oocytes; consumption of raw or undercooked meat
Congenital Toxoplasmosis
Transplacental tansmission
rapidly dividing tissue stages; found in liver, lungs, spleen, muscle, lymph nodes; found in the form of pseudocysts (groups); passed transplacentally
Slowly dividing tissue stages; found in the brain, heart, skeletal muscle, eye; in the form of true tissue cysts
Oocysts, Sporocysts, Sporozoites
passed in feces of felids; resistant exogenous stage
Life Cycle T. gondii in Felids
See image
Life Cycle T. gondii in Intermediate Host
See slide
Human Symptoms of Acquired Disease
Fever, malaise, lymphadenopathy, encephalitis, myocarditis, pneumonitis, retinochoroiditis (can be confused with the flu)
Human Symptoms of Congenital Disease
Retinochoroiditis, intr-cerebral calcification, Hydrocephalus, Convulsions, delayed development
Cat Symptoms Toxoplasmosis
Pneumonia, cns disease, occular disease, anorexia, depression, sudden death
Toxoplasmosis Symptoms in Dog
Pneumonia, encephalomyelitis, and involvment of other organs
Toxoplasmosis Syptoms in Sheep, Cattle, and Pigs
Sheep: Abortion
Cattle: Pneumonia and encephalomyelitis
Pigs: Pneumonia, encephalitis, abortion
Diagnosis Toxoplasmosis
Biopsy, Serology (IgA titer), Inoculation into laboratory animals, Fecal flotation for felids (however intermittent cyst shedding can give inconclusive fecal results)
Diagnostic serology
Sabin-Feldman dye test, Indirect Hemagglutination Test, Complement Fixation Test, Modified Agglutination Test, Latex Agglutination Test, Indirct Flourescent Antibody Test, Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay
Treatment of Toxoplasmosis
Sulfonamides + Pyrimethamine; Clindamycin; Trimethoprim + Sulfamethoxazole; Folinic acid + Bakers Yeast; Other: Piritrexin, roxithromycin, spiramycin, lincomycin analogues; Ponazuril (off label)
Prevention of Toxoplasmosis
Feed cats dry, canned, or cooked food; prevent hunting, clean litter daily; wear gloves; cover sandboxes; boil water; cook meat > 66c; Use rodenticides and traps; keep cats out of feed; remove cat feces; prevent cats from sharing facilities with other animals
Neospora caninum
Causing Neosporosis; phylum apicomplexa; life cycle similar to T. gondii; dog can serve as both intermediate and definitive host; found worldwide
Life Cycle Neospora
Tachyzoites –> Bradyzoites (tissue cysts) –> Oocysts –> Tachyzoites
Species affected by Neosporosis
Mammals including not human primates, but NOT humans
Modes of Neospora Transmission
transplacental (congenital), consumption of raw or undercooked tissues, experimental inoculation of tachyzoites or bradyzoites; ingestions of oocysts; seminal fluid?
Clinical Signs Neospsora
Neuromuscular disease; prgressive paralysis (most severe in congenitallyinfected pups); Dysphagia, paralysis of jaw, muscle atrophy; No breed or age predilection; myocarditis, hepatitis, pneumonia, dermatitis
Neosporosis Symptoms in Cattle
infected cattle do not exhibit signs of disease; only manifestaion in neonatal paralysis (mid-gestation), abortions (early gestation), normal but infected (late gestation), post natal infection
Neosporosis Symptoms in Sheep, Goats, Deer
Sheep & Goats: neonatal paralysis, abortions
Deer: lesions depend on where the parasite develops
Neosporis of Horses
Neospora hughesi
Causing abortion, myelitis, and EPM
Diagnosis Neosporosis
History and clinical signs
Serology Dogs: IFA test, serum & CSF, AgM or IgG, ELISA
Serology Cattle: Western blot, ELISA, Serum & milk
Treatment Neosporosis
Surgery, toxoplasmacial drugs (Tribrissen, Pyrimethamine, Clindamycin, Ponazuril
Prevention/Control Neosporosis
Caniid is definitive host so should prevent fecal-oral routes of infection; infected bitches infect their pups; infected femal pups infect their litters; infected cows infect their calves

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