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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz
ISSN: 1678-8060
EISSN: 1678-8060
Vol. 110, No. 1, 2015, pp. 95-100
Bioline Code: oc15007
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Vol. 110, No. 1, 2015, pp. 95-100

 en Experimental infection with the Toxoplasma gondii ME-49 strain in the Brazilian BR-1 mini pig is a suitable animal model for human toxoplasmosis
Miranda, Farlen José Bebber; de Souza, Diogo Benchimol; Frazão-Teixeira, Edwards; de Oliveira, Fábio Conceição; de Melo, João Cardoso; Mariano, Carlos Magno Anselmo; Albernaz, Antonio Peixoto; de Carvalho, Eulógio Carlos Queiróz; de Oliveira, Francisco Carlos Rodrigues; de Souza, Wanderley & DaMatta, Renato Augusto


Toxoplasma gondii causes toxoplasmosis, a worldwide disease. Experimentation with pigs is necessary for the development of new therapeutic approaches to human diseases. BR-1 mini pigs were intramuscularly infected with T. gondii with tachyzoites (RH strain) or orally infected with cysts (ME-49 strain). Haematology and serum biochemistry were analysed and buffy coat cells were inoculated in mice to determine tachyzoite circulation. No alterations were observed in erythrocyte and platelet values; however, band neutrophils increased seven days after infection with ME-49. Serology of the mice inoculated with pig blood leucocytes revealed circulating ME-49 or RH strain tachyzoites in the pigs’ peripheral blood at two and seven or nine days post-infection. The tachyzoites were also directly observed in blood smears from the infected pigs outside and inside leucocytes for longer periods. Alanineaminotransferase was high at days 21 and 32 in the RH infected pigs. After 90 days, the pigs were euthanised and their tissue samples were processed and inoculated into mice. The mice serology revealed the presence of parasites in the hearts, ileums and mesenteric lymph nodes of the pigs. Additionally, cysts in the mice were only observed after pig heart tissue inoculation. The infected pigs presented similar human outcomes with relatively low pathogenicity and the BR-1 mini pig model infected with ME-49 is suitable to monitor experimental toxoplasmosis.

Toxoplasma gondii; pig infection; haematology; parasitaemia; neutrophils

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