LATEX AGGLUTATION TEST AND PCR ASSAYS FOR DIAGNOSIS OF TOXOPLASMA GONDII INFECTION IN RED MEAT PRODUCING ANIMALS IN ASWAN GOVERNORATE, SOUTHERN EGYPT
Abstract: Livestock meat is considered a potential source of human infection, therefore evaluation of the infection rate with Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) in these animals’ meat is needed for public health protection. Serum and meat samples were collected from slaughtered animals (n=106) (27 sheep, 42 cattle and 37 camels) from slaughterhouses in Aswan Governorate, located in southern Egypt. T. gondii infection status was detected by Latex agglutination test (LAT), microscopic examination and PCR. Our results revealed that the overall prevalence of anti-T. gondii antibodies among serum samples was 48.1 % using LAT. Male sheep, cattle, and camels had a higher positive percentage (42.9 %, 69.4% and 33.3 %, respectively) than females (40 %, 50 % and 30.8 %, respectively). The infection rate of T. gondii was higher in adult sheep and camels, while it was lower in adult cattle (64.5 %) than in young (72.7 %). There was a high statistically significant difference (P ≤ 0.01) between the animal species using LAT. T. gondii trophozoites were detected microscopically in 47.1 % of meat samples, while T. gondii DNA was detected in 56.9 % by using conventional Polymerase Chain Reaction (cPCR) based B1 gene. There was no significant difference between the results of both microscopy and PCR methods. In conclusion, PCR outperforms LAT in the detection of T. gondii infection and can thus be applied to routine diagnosis of toxoplasmosis in red meat producing animals.
Key words: Aswan; Camel ; Cattle ; Egypt; LAT; PCR; Red meat; Sheep; Toxoplasma gondii.