Toxoplasma gondii is an important zoonotic protozoan parasite with can be encountered around the world. It is capable of infecting all warm-blooded animals including humans. Cats play an important role for T. gondii as definitive hosts and, remarkably, are known as the only final hosts that produce oocysts in their faeces, contaminating environment (soil, food, and water).
The objective of the present study is to compare the prevalence of T. gondii infection in house cats versus stray cats with in-house and commercial indirect fluorescence antibody test (IFAT).
An investigation of T. gondii infection was conducted in 260 cats (130 house cats and 130 stray cats) within Bangkok metropolitan and its vicinity between the year 2015–2016 using in-house and commercial IFAT. IgG antibody to Toxoplasma antigen of 1:100 was consider positive for Toxoplasma infection.
The overall prevalence of T. gondii infection in cats was 6.54% (17/260) by in-house IFAT and 23.85% (62/260) by commercial IFAT, respectively. Interestingly, the prevalence of toxoplasmosis in stray cats was significantly higher than in household cats by both tests. Furthermore, IgM antibody to Toxoplasma will be screened to detect acute infection in these samples.
In conclusion, the results demonstrated that commercial IFAT had a higher sensitivity and specificity compared to in house IFAT and indicated that commercial IFAT can be used as the routine diagnostic test for the detection of T. gondii infection. Cats in the Bangkok metropolitan area and vicinity could serve as a zoonotic reservoir for toxoplasmosis.