Epidemiological Aspects in Toxoplasmosis in Dogs from a Small Community of São Pauo State, Brazil
Toxoplasmosis is a parasite zoonosis caused by Toxoplasma gondii, a coccidian protozoan, whose life cycle alternates between an intermediate and definitive host. In intermediate hosts, herbivorous or omnivorous, the parasite multiplies in several cell types, forming tissue cysts. In definitive host, species of Felidae family the sexual phase causes the formation of oocysts in the gut. The aim of this study was to verify the seroprevalence of anti-T. gondii antibodies in sera samples of dogs from Vitoriana, a small community from São Paulo state, Brazil, and the correlation of some epidemiological variables. A total of 245 sera samples of dogs was collected and tested in Laboratory of Zoonosis Diagnosis, and assisted by Botucatu City Hall. Sera were tested for Indirect Fluorescent Antibody Test (IFAT) to research of anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies, using a canine anti anti-IgG antibody conjugated to fluoresceine isothiocyanate, kindly supplied by Center of Zoonosis Control of São Paulo City Hall. The reading was realized in fluorescent Zeiss microscope, SH 250 model, considering positive the sera reacting at dilutions equal or higher than 1:16. In positive cases, some epidemiological variables were studied, like breed, age, sex, access to the street and ingestion of homely food. From 245 sera samples, 98 (40.00%) showed anti-T. gondii antibodies. The most frequent titer was 16, in 70 (71.43%) dogs, followed by titer 64, in 27 (27.55%), and titer 256, in 1 (1.02%) dogs. From positive dogs, 76 (77.55%), ingest homely food fact that can be considered as an infection route to this disease, and 45 (45.92%) dogs had access to the street, where they can ingest oocysts from feces of infected cats, presents in environment, or contaminated water. Thus, we can affirm that toxoplasmosis is present in Vitoriana, characterized for a high consumption of homely food for these animals or the contact with the agent from soil or contaminated water, being necessary sanitary and health education about the importance of food sanity and the prevention of these and others important diseases.