One hundred and seventy one serum samples from 10 game species from Zimbabwe were tested for IgG antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii infection using the modified agglutination test (MAT). Significantly higher seroprevalences were found in the felidae (Panthera leo) (92% of 26), bovidae (Tragelaphus species) (55.9% of 34) and farm-reared struthionidae (Struthio camelus) (48% of 50) compared to the other groups tested. Among the bovidae, the nyala (Tragelaphus angasii) had the highest seroprevalence of 90% (9/10). Anti-Toxoplasma antibody prevalences in browsers [greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) (20% of 10), giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) (10% of 10) and elephant (Loxodonta africana) (10% of 20)] were generally in the lower range. No antibodies were detected in the wild African suidae [warthog (Phacochoerus africanus) and bushpig (Potamochoerus larvatus)]. Attempts to isolate T. gondii from the heart muscles of seropositve ostriches by subinoculation in BALB/c mice were unsuccessful.
Keywords: Toxoplasma gondii, Antibody prevalence, Modified agglutination test, Game species, Ostriches, Zimbabwe
Authors: T. Hove and S. Mukaratirwa
Journal: Acta Tropica