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Serodiagnosis of ovine toxoplasmosis: an assessment of the latex agglutination test and the value of IgM specific titres after experimental oocyst-induced infections



Serodiagnosis of ovine toxoplasmosis: an assessment of the latex agglutination test and the value of IgM specific titres after experimental oocyst-induced infections



Research in Veterinary Science 46(1): 67-72



The antibody response of 20 pregnant ewes to oocyst infection with Toxoplasma gondii was determined by the latex agglutination test (LAT) and compared with the indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT) and a commercially available indirect haemagglutination test (IHAT). The LAT and IFAT showed a similar rapid response with antibody first appearing by two to three weeks after infection and titres that correlated closely (r = 0.81, P < 0.001). The IHAT response was slower and less consistent up to seven weeks after infection. The LAT response was biphasic in seven of the sheep. Sera were fractionated using a minicolumn gel filtration technique and specific IgM and IgG titres determined by LAT. IgM titres peaked three weeks after infection and IgG titres exceeded IgM titres at a mean time of 4.7 weeks after infection (range 3 to 7). Eleven sheep exhibited fetopathy with abortion/parturition 12 to 53 days after infection; in nine of them IgG titres exceeded IgM at that time. A non-specific anti-toxoplasma reaction associated with IgM antibody occurred at low titre in one sheep. The results indicate that used from a dilution of 1/64 the LAT is a sensitive, reliable and rapidly responsive serological test for toxoplasma infection in ewes and it may be utilised with sample fractionation techniques to determine IgM titres. It is suggested that the best time to examine ewe sera to assist diagnosis of toxoplasma abortion is one week after abortion. While the determination of specific IgM titres in ewe sera may assist epidemiological studies and, sometimes, diagnosis, in the majority of aborting ewe sera it is unlikely to aid diagnosis.

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Accession: 002219274

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PMID: 2646662



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