Toxoplasma gondii infection in adult llamas (Lama glama) and vicunas (Vicugna vicugna) in the Peruvian Andean region

A. Chávez-Velásquez, G. Álvarez-García, M. Gómez-Bautista, E. Casas-Astos, E. Serrano-Martínez, L. M. Ortega-Mora

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Abstract

The present study was designed to investigate Toxoplasma gondii infection in adult llamas (Lama glama) and vicunas (Vicugna vicugna) in the Peruvian Andean region, for which to date no information has been available. Serum samples from 43 llamas (L. glama) and 200 vicunas were tested by IFAT detecting titres of 1:50 or higher in 55.8% (33.9-70.9%) and 5.5% (2.8-9.6%), respectively. IFAT titres ranged from 1:50 to 1:6400. In order to avoid cross reactions with closely related coccidian parasites and to confirm the existence of T. gondii specific antibodies, IFAT positive sera from both ruminant species were also analysed by western blot. T. gondii specific antigens were recognised by IFAT positive sera, although different IFAT cut-off points could be selected for llamas (1:200) and vicunas (1:50) meaning seroprevalence of 44.2% (29.1-60.1%) and 5.5% (2.8-9.6%), respectively. Based on the frequency and intensity of tachyzoite antigen recognition, at least three immunodominant antigens with apparent molecular weights of 22-24, 30, and 38-40 kDa were detected, together with other minor protein fractions located in the 18-73 kDa range. This study documents for the first time the presence of T. gondii infection and reports the target T. gondii antigens in adult llamas and vicunas in Peru. © 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)93-97
Number of pages5
JournalVeterinary Parasitology
DOIs
StatePublished - 10 Jun 2005

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