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Seroprevalence and risk factors for Neospora caninum in sheep in the state Minas Gerais, southeastern Brazil.

Vet Parasitol; 188(1-2): 168-71, 2012 Aug 13.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22475416
The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and risk factors associated with infection due to Neospora caninum in serum samples from 488 sheep originating from 63 farms in 63 municipalities distributed across eight of the twelve mesoregions of the state Minas Gerais, southeastern Brazil. For detection of N. caninum the sheep serum samples were subjected to the indirect fluorescence antibody test (IFAT ≥ 50). To identify the risk factors associated with infection due to N. caninum a questionnaire was filled out for each herd by interviewing, the individual responsible for the herd, demanding information on the general characteristics of the property. Sixty-four sheep sera (13.1%; 95% CI=10.3-16.4) presented IgG-specific anti-N. caninum antibodies with the following titers: 50 (49; 76.6%), 100 (7; 10.9%), 200 (4; 6.2%), 400 (3; 4.7%) and 800 (1; 1.6%). The prevalence of infected sheep per mesoregion ranged from 0 to 28.1%. Out of the 63 farms sampled, 31 (49.2%; 95% CI=36.4-62.1) presented at least one seropositive sheep. No significant association was found between the presence of anti-N. caninum antibodies and the risk factors evaluated on the farms, except for the mesoregion variable (p=0.004; OR=0.429; CI95%=0.182-1.008). These results indicate that there is a need for additional research to define the epidemiological importance of this parasite as a cause of reproductive problems in sheep herds in Minas Gerais.