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1.
Parasitology ; 149(11): 1487-1504, 2022 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35929484

RESUMO

Cruzia tentaculata is a helminth parasite of marsupials and has a wide geographic distribution from Mexico to Argentina. The aim of this study was to analyse the genetic population structure of this nematode along the Atlantic Forest biome. Cruzia tentaculata specimens were recovered from Didelphis aurita, Didelphis albiventris and Philander quica in 9 localities. Morphological and morphometric data were investigated for phenotypic diversity among localities and hosts using multivariate discriminant analysis of principal components. Phylogenetic relationships of C. tentaculata were determined using maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference. The population structure was analysed by fixation indices, molecular variance analysis, Tajima's D and Fu's Fs neutrality tests, Mantel tests and Bayesian clustering analysis. A higher significant morphometric difference for males was observed between localities. In the haplogroup networks, 2 groups were recovered, separating locations from the north and from the south/southeast. The morphometric variation in C. tentaculata between different localities was compatible with this north and southeast/south pattern, suggesting adaptation to different ecological conditions. Population genetic analyses suggested a pattern of evolutionary processes driven by Pleistocene glacial refugia in the northeast and southeast of the Atlantic Forest based on the distribution of genetic diversity.


Assuntos
Ascaridídios , Didelphis , Marsupiais , Nematoides , Parasitos , Animais , Ascaridídios/anatomia & histologia , Teorema de Bayes , Didelphis/parasitologia , Florestas , Variação Genética , Genética Populacional , Masculino , Filogenia , América do Sul
2.
Am J Trop Med Hyg ; 107(1): 102-109, 2022 Jul 13.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35895366

RESUMO

Murine typhus is an acute undifferentiated febrile illness caused by Rickettsia typhi. In the United States, its reemergence appears to be driven by a shift from the classic rat-rat flea cycle of transmission to one involving opossums (Didelphis virginiana) and cat fleas. Little is known of the ability of opossums to act as a reservoir and amplifying host for R. typhi. Here, we use Monodelphis domestica (the laboratory opossum) as a surrogate for D. virginiana. Opossums were inoculated via the intraperitoneal (IP) or intradermal (ID) route with 1 × 106 viable R. typhi. Blood and tissues were collected on days 6, 13, 20, and 27 or if moribund. Although one ID-infected opossum died, the remainder did not appear ill, whereas half of the IP-inoculated animals succumbed to infection. Rickettsemia was demonstrated in all animals through week 2 of infection and sporadically in weeks 3 and 4. Rickettsia typhi DNA was detected in all tissues, with most animals demonstrating the presence of bacteria into weeks 3 and 4. Histopathology and immunohistochemistry demonstrated typical findings of rickettsial infection. Akin to infection in rats, the demonstration of disseminated infection, typical inflammation, and prolonged rickettsemia with relatively few clinical effects (especially in the more natural route of ID inoculation) supports the potential of opossums to act as a competent mammalian reservoir and component of the zoonotic maintenance cycle of R. typhi. Understanding the dynamics of infection within opossums may have implications for the prevention and control of murine typhus.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Monodelphis , Infecções por Rickettsia , Rickettsia , Sifonápteros , Tifo Endêmico Transmitido por Pulgas , Animais , Didelphis/microbiologia , Camundongos , Ratos , Rickettsia/genética , Infecções por Rickettsia/microbiologia , Rickettsia typhi , Sifonápteros/microbiologia , Tifo Endêmico Transmitido por Pulgas/microbiologia
3.
Parasit Vectors ; 15(1): 203, 2022 Jun 13.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35698157

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: The population genetics of parasites may be influenced by host specificity, life cycle, host geographical range, evolutionary history, and host population structure. The nematode Aspidodera raillieti infects different marsupial and rodent hosts in the Nearctic and Neotropical regions, implying a gene flow among populations. However, niche diversification of the main hosts of A. raillieti in superimposed areas may provide conditions for population genetic structuring within this parasite species. We examined the genetic structuring of A. raillieti infecting three marsupial species co-occurring along the South and Southeast Brazilian Atlantic Forest, a hotspot of biodiversity. METHODS: We employed morphometric analyses and partial mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase I gene sequences (MT-CO1) to characterize populations via phylogenetic and phylogeographic analyses. RESULTS: Among 175 A. raillieti specimens recovered from the marsupial hosts Didelphis aurita, D. albiventris, and Philander quica, we identified 99 MT-CO1 haplotypes forming four haplogroups and four clades in networks and phylogenetic trees, respectively. Clades I and II encompassed parasites of D. albiventris from the South region, clade III comprised parasites of D. aurita from the South and Southeast regions, and clade IV encompassed parasites of D. aurita and D. albiventris from the South and Southeast regions and parasites of P. quica from the South region. High genetic differentiation between clades, with a high fixation index and greater genetic variation in the analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA), indicated low gene flow between clades. Haplotypes shared among host species revealed a lack of host specificity. A significant correlation in the Mantel test suggested parasite isolation by distance, while there was no evidence of geographical structure between populations. Negative neutrality test values for clades III and IV suggested recent population expansion. Morphometric differentiation between A. raillieti specimens recovered from different host species, as well as from different localities, was more evident in males. CONCLUSION: The genetic structure of A. raillieti populations in the South and Southeast Atlantic Forest resulted from historical events rather than from current geographical distribution or host specificity. We also demonstrate morphometric variation associated with host species and localities, suggesting phenotypic plasticity to host attributes and to spatial variables.


Assuntos
Ascaridídios , Didelphis , Marsupiais , Parasitos , Animais , Brasil , Didelphis/parasitologia , Florestas , Estruturas Genéticas , Variação Genética , Genética Populacional , Haplótipos , Masculino , Filogenia , Filogeografia
4.
Rev Bras Parasitol Vet ; 31(2): e002922, 2022.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35674531

RESUMO

Although the common opossum, Didelphis marsupialis (Didelphimorphia: Didelphidae) is a species widely distributed in South America, knowledge about their helminth parasites and helminth community structure is scarce. The aims of this study were to describe the species composition and analyze the structure of the helminth community of the common opossum in an area of the Amazonian Arc in northern Mato Grosso. The helminths were recovered, counted, and identified in 32 individuals. Overall, 10,198 specimens were categorized into 9 helminths taxa (seven nematodes, one cestode, and one acanthocephalan). The most abundant species were Aspidodera raillieti, Viannaia hamata, and Travassostrongylus orloffi. No statistically significant differences in helminth abundance and prevalence were observed between host sexes. However, young hosts had higher abundance and prevalence of Didelphonema longispiculata, whereas Oligacanthorhynchus microcephalus had higher abundance and prevalence in adult hosts. This was the first study to analyze the helminth fauna and helminth community structure of D. marsupialis in the Amazonian Arc. This is the first report of the presence of A. raillieti, D. longispiculata, T. orloffi, T. minuta, V. hamata, and O. microcephalus in the state of Mato Grosso, Brazil.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Helmintíase Animal , Helmintos , Marsupiais , Animais , Brasil , Didelphis/parasitologia , Helmintíase Animal/epidemiologia , Helmintíase Animal/parasitologia
5.
Parasitol Res ; 121(5): 1545-1549, 2022 May.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35192069

RESUMO

Angiostrongylus cantonensis is a worldwide zoonotic parasite that causes eosinophilic meningoencephalitis in many species of animals including humans. This report describes neuro-angiostrongylosis in a white-eared opossum that showed nervous clinical signs such as circling and depression. At necropsy, no relevant macroscopic lesions were observed. Histologically, eosinophilic meningoencephalitis was associated with multiple sections of nematodes and many intracytoplasmic eosinophilic inclusion bodies within gastric parietal cells. Immunohistochemistry was strongly positive for canine distemper virus in the stomach but there was no immunolabeling in the brain. This study describes a fatal case of eosinophilic meningoencephalitis by A. cantonensis with canine distemper virus concurrent infection in a white-eared opossum in southern Brazil, with histological characterization and molecular confirmation of the parasitism.


Assuntos
Angiostrongylus cantonensis , Didelphis , Cinomose , Encefalite Infecciosa , Meningoencefalite , Infecções por Strongylida , Animais , Brasil , Vírus de DNA , Cinomose/complicações , Cães , Meningoencefalite/diagnóstico , Meningoencefalite/veterinária , Ratos , Infecções por Strongylida/diagnóstico , Infecções por Strongylida/veterinária
6.
Parasit Vectors ; 15(1): 37, 2022 Jan 24.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35073983

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: The distribution of parasite load across hosts may modify the transmission dynamics of infectious diseases. Chagas disease is caused by a multi-host protozoan, Trypanosoma cruzi, but the association between host parasitemia and infectiousness to the vector has not been studied in sylvatic mammalian hosts. We quantified T. cruzi parasite load in sylvatic mammals, modeled the association of the parasite load with infectiousness to the vector and compared these results with previous ones for local domestic hosts. METHODS: The bloodstream parasite load in each of 28 naturally infected sylvatic mammals from six species captured in northern Argentina was assessed by quantitative PCR, and its association with infectiousness to the triatomine Triatoma infestans was evaluated, as determined by natural or artificial xenodiagnosis. These results were compared with our previous results for 88 humans, 70 dogs and 13 cats, and the degree of parasite over-dispersion was quantified and non-linear models fitted to data on host infectiousness and bloodstream parasite load. RESULTS: The parasite loads of Didelphis albiventris (white-eared opossum) and Dasypus novemcinctus (nine-banded armadillo) were directly and significantly associated with infectiousness of the host and were up to 190-fold higher than those in domestic hosts. Parasite load was aggregated across host species, as measured by the negative binomial parameter, k, and found to be substantially higher in white-eared opossums, cats, dogs and nine-banded armadillos (range: k = 0.3-0.5) than in humans (k = 5.1). The distribution of bloodstream parasite load closely followed the "80-20 rule" in every host species examined. However, the 20% of human hosts, domestic mammals or sylvatic mammals exhibiting the highest parasite load accounted for 49, 25 and 33% of the infected triatomines, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Our results support the use of bloodstream parasite load as a proxy of reservoir host competence and individual transmissibility. The over-dispersed distribution of T. cruzi bloodstream load implies the existence of a fraction of highly infectious hosts that could be targeted to improve vector-borne transmission control efforts toward interruption transmission. Combined strategies that decrease the parasitemia and/or host-vector contact with these hosts would disproportionally contribute to T. cruzi transmission control.


Assuntos
Doença de Chagas/transmissão , Mamíferos/parasitologia , Triatoma/parasitologia , Trypanosoma cruzi , Animais , Animais Selvagens/parasitologia , Argentina/epidemiologia , Tatus/parasitologia , Gatos , Doença de Chagas/diagnóstico , Doença de Chagas/prevenção & controle , Didelphis/parasitologia , Reservatórios de Doenças/parasitologia , Vetores de Doenças , Cães , Florestas , Genes de Protozoários , Humanos , Insetos Vetores/parasitologia , Carga Parasitária/estatística & dados numéricos , Parasitemia/parasitologia , Reação em Cadeia da Polimerase em Tempo Real , Trypanosoma cruzi/genética , Trypanosoma cruzi/isolamento & purificação , Doenças Transmitidas por Vetores/diagnóstico , Doenças Transmitidas por Vetores/prevenção & controle , Doenças Transmitidas por Vetores/transmissão , Xenodiagnóstico
7.
J Helminthol ; 96: e7, 2022 Jan 28.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35086598

RESUMO

Didelphis albiventris is the opossum with the largest geographic distribution in Brazil and has a wide spectrum of helminth parasites. This study aimed to describe the species composition and analyse the structure of helminth communities of D. albiventris in two extremes of the Atlantic Forest in Brazil. The influence of host sex, body mass, age, helminth species richness and locality on the abundance and prevalence of the most prevalent helminth species was investigated. Ninety-five per cent of the animals were infected with at least one species. Nine helminth species were found: the nematodes Aspidodera raillieti, Cruzia tentaculata, Trichuris didelphis and Trichuris minuta in the large intestine; Turgida turgida in the stomach; Travassostrongylus orloffi and Viannaia hamata; and the trematodes Brachylaima advena and Rhopalias coronatus in the small intestine. Three helminth morphospecies were also recovered: the nematodes Hoineffia sp. and Viannaia sp. and a cestode in the small intestine. Cruzia tentaculata and V. hamata were the species with the highest mean abundances and intensities, while the most prevalent species were A. raillieti, C. tentaculata, T. turgida and V. hamata, forming the central nucleus of the helminth component community. The analysis of the helminth metacommunity structure indicated a Gleasonian pattern for the total set of infracommunities, corroborating the beta diversity indices, which indicated more species replacement than loss between localities and infracommunities, although at a low level. The results indicated a stronger influence of host attributes than geographical distance on the community structure.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Helmintíase Animal , Helmintos , Nematoides , Animais , Florestas , Helmintíase Animal/epidemiologia
8.
Parasitol Res ; 121(1): 491-497, 2022 Jan.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34766206

RESUMO

Five psittacine birds, one eastern rosella (Platycercus eximius), one rose-ringed parakeet (Psittacula krameri), two eclectus parrot (Eclectus roratus), and one princess parrot (Polytelis alexandrae), all housed in a commercial aviary from La Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina, suddenly died after a short period of dyspnea. The most significant histopathological findings for all specimens were interstitial exudative pneumonia, with marked congestion and hemorrhage, septa thickening, and massive perivascular lymphoplasmacytic infiltration. Structures compatible with protozoal schizonts were observed in the capillary lumen. No bacterial development was obtained and the real-time PCR for Chlamydia spp. and several psittacine viruses were negative. All the samples resulted negative on the specific PCR for T. gondii. Sarcocystis spp. PCR was positive in the lung and/or liver samples from all birds. The samples showed a restriction pattern of S. neurona and of S. falcatula-like by PCR-RFLP using JNB25-JD396 and JNB33-JNB54 primers, respectively. Sequences obtained from Sarcocystis sp. 18S rRNA and COI gene from 4 birds showed a high identity among them. The 18S rRNA fragment and complete gene sequences obtained showed the highest similarity with S. falcatula and S. speeri sequences but also with S. neurona SN5 isolate sequence. Likewise, COI sequences have 99.89-100% similarity with S. falcatula and S. speeri sequences. Based on all biological and molecular information recorded, we conclude that the etiological agent was S. falcatula-like, close related with the species shed by opossums in South America.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Papagaios , Sarcocystis , Sarcocistose , Animais , Argentina
9.
Transbound Emerg Dis ; 69(3): 1426-1437, 2022 May.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33872470

RESUMO

Feline Morbillivirus (FeMV) was first detected in 2012 in domestic cats from Hong Kong and was found to be associated with tubulointerstitial nephritis and chronic kidney disease. In subsequent studies in other countries, FeMV was detected in asymptomatic cats. However, it is not clear whether FeMV plays a role as a pathogen in the kidney diseases of cats, and other epidemiological data are still unknown. To date, studies have reported the presence of FeMV exclusively in domestic cats. This study is the first molecular detection of the FeMV RNA associated with pathological and immunohistochemical findings in a synanthropic marsupial, the white-eared opossum (Didelphis albiventris), inhabiting peri-urban areas of north-central Parana, Southern Brazil. Molecular techniques identified the viral RNA in the lungs and kidneys. Histopathologic evaluation of these tissues revealed interstitial pneumonia in the lungs with lymphocytic nephritis and tubular necrosis in the kidneys. Immunohistochemistry assays detected positive intralesional immunoreactivity to N protein of FeMV within the lungs and kidneys. A FeMV opossum strain was isolated in Crandell Rees feline kidney lineage cells, resulting in syncytia formation and cell death. Therefore, these results support the ability of FeMV to infect other mammal species and reinforce the possibility of the opossum to be a disseminator of this virus among domestic and wild animals.


Assuntos
Doenças do Gato , Didelphis , Infecções por Morbillivirus , Morbillivirus , Animais , Doenças do Gato/epidemiologia , Doenças do Gato/patologia , Gatos , Rim , Morbillivirus/genética , Infecções por Morbillivirus/epidemiologia , Infecções por Morbillivirus/veterinária
10.
Braz. j. biol ; 82: e240724, 2022. tab, graf
Artigo em Inglês | LILACS | ID: biblio-1249270

RESUMO

Abstract Developing a captive breeding system for the widely hunted Caribbean species of opossum Didelphis marsupialis insularis can greatly aide in the management and conservation of this species in the neo-tropics. Although this species possesses ideal traits for captive breeding in this region (tolerance to high heat and humidity, high reproductive rate, and resistance to disease), challenges due to its aggressive behaviour and limited information on its breeding behaviour have prevented a system from being developed for this species. The present study describes a breeding system, and the reproductive behaviour of this species under captive conditions. Six (1 male; 5 females) adult opossums were maintained and managed for breeding over a ten (10) month period. Pouch litter sizes averaged 5±2.5 with a range of 2 to 8. Gestation length was found to be 13.25±0.96 days and 4 litters (n=23) were successfully weaned at 11-13 weeks. It was found that the male D. m. insularis exhibits behaviours of interest that can serve as indicators for receptivity of the female, and overall, that this species can be successfully reared and bred under captive conditions in the neo-tropics.


Resumo O desenvolvimento de um sistema de criação em cativeiro para as espécies de gambá do Caribe amplamente caçadas, Didelphis marsupialis insularis, pode auxiliar bastante no manejo e conservação dessa espécie nos neotrópicos. Embora essa espécie possua características ideais para a criação em cativeiro nessa região (tolerância a altas temperaturas e umidade, alta taxa de reprodução e resistência a doenças), alguns fatores, como o seu comportamento agressivo e informações limitadas sobre seu comportamento reprodutivo, impediram o desenvolvimento de um sistema para D. m. insularis. O presente estudo descreve um sistema de criação e o comportamento reprodutivo dessa espécie em condições de cativeiro. Seis gambás adultos (1 macho e 5 fêmeas) foram mantidos para reprodução durante um período de 10 meses. O tamanho da ninhada em bolsa foi em média de 5 ± 2,5 com um intervalo de 2 a 8. A duração da gestação foi de 13,25 ± 0,96 dias, e 4 ninhadas (n = 23) foram desmamadas com sucesso de 11 a 13 semanas. Verificou-se que o macho D. m. insularis exibe comportamentos de interesse que podem servir como indicadores de receptividade da fêmea, e, em geral, essa espécie pode ser criada com sucesso em condições de cativeiro nos neotrópicos.


Assuntos
Animais , Masculino , Feminino , Gravidez , Comportamento Reprodutivo , Didelphis , Gambás , Reprodução , Região do Caribe , Tamanho da Ninhada de Vivíparos
11.
Rev Bras Parasitol Vet ; 30(4): e009721, 2021.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34495043

RESUMO

Hemoplasmas are epierythrocytic bacteria that infect mammals. 'Candidatus Mycoplasma haemoalbiventris' was detected in white-eared opossums (Didelphis albiventris) from southern and central-western Brazil. The present study aimed at: i) screening opossums for tick-borne (TBP) pathogens (Piroplasmida and Anaplasmataceae) and ii) detecting and characterizing hemoplasma species infecting opossums from Curitiba and Foz do Iguaçu cities in the Paraná State, southern Brazil. Thirty blood samples from white-eared opossums were evaluated by PCR assays. Animals were not infested by ectoparasites. The mammalian endogenous gapdh gene was consistently amplified in all samples. All opossums tested negative for Theileria/Babesia spp. and Ehrlichia/Anaplasma spp. by PCR based on 18S rRNA and 16S rRNA genes, respectively. A genus-specific PCR assay based on the 16S rRNA gene of hemoplasmas showed that three/13 (23.08%; CI 95%: 8.18-50.26%) opossums from Foz do Iguaçu were positive for hemotropic Mycoplasma sp. All opossums from Curitiba tested negative for hemoplasmas. Sequencing of both the 16S and 23S rRNA genes revealed that the animals were infected by 'Ca. M. haemoalbiventris'. Although 'Ca. M. haemoalbiventris' is prevalent in opossums in Brazil, clinical signs associated with its infection and its putative vectors remain unknown.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Infecções por Mycoplasma , Mycoplasma , Carrapatos , Animais , Brasil , Cidades , Mycoplasma/genética , Infecções por Mycoplasma/diagnóstico , Infecções por Mycoplasma/epidemiologia , Infecções por Mycoplasma/veterinária , Filogenia , RNA Ribossômico 16S/genética
12.
Parasitol Res ; 120(11): 3815-3825, 2021 Nov.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34568959

RESUMO

Parasites are important organisms in ecosystem dynamics and take part in the regulation and structure of host populations. The prevalence, abundance, and distribution of parasites in their host species may be affected by biotic and abiotic factors. Most studies of helminths of Brazilian marsupials are taxonomic descriptions or re-descriptions and records of occurrence. The use of noninvasive techniques for studying parasitic worms of vertebrate hosts is more common in large or threatened species. The aims of this study were to describe and identify the helminth morphotypes and to analyse the parasitological parameters of gastrointestinal helminth eggs obtained in faecal samples of marsupial Didelphis aurita at the Fiocruz Atlantic Forest Biological Station and surroundings, municipality of Rio de Janeiro, southeast Brazil. The common opossums were sampled during a capture-mark-recapture study. Faecal samples collected from each animal were analysed for helminth egg diagnosis using the methods of flotation in sugar solution and sedimentation. Eggs were compared with samples obtained from the uterus of adult worms obtained from a previous study carried out in the same area. Eleven helminth egg morphotypes were found. Among them, seven were identified at the species level. The highest values of parasitic load and prevalence were observed for the families Viannaiidae and Trichuridae. A significant relationship was found between the number of morphotypes and host body size in females. The influence of parasite load on host condition factor or body size was not observed.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Helmintos , Parasitos , Animais , Brasil/epidemiologia , Ecossistema , Feminino , Humanos
13.
Parasitol Res ; 120(10): 3537-3546, 2021 Oct.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34448058

RESUMO

The order Piroplasmida encompasses tick-borne pathogens of veterinary and medical importance positioned in two main families: Babesiidae and Theileriidae. Even though previous studies carried out in Brazil recorded the occurrence of piroplasmid species circulating in small mammals, 18S RNA gene sequences were only partially sequenced, preventing the assessment of their phylogenetic positioning. The current study aimed to detect and characterize, using morphological, molecular, and bioinformatic approaches, piroplasmids from wild mammals and associated ticks sampled in Central-Western Brazil. Out of 67 Didelphis albiventris sampled, 22 (16.4%) were positive for piroplasmids by PCR. In contrast, none of the 48 small rodents and 14 capybaras (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) was PCR-positive. Four Amblyomma dubitatum ticks-one from Rattus rattus, one from H. hydrochaeris, and two from D. albiventris-out of 114 Amblyomma spp. DNA samples were positive for piroplasmids by PCR. The phylogenetic inference performed using the near-complete 18S rRNA gene positioned the putative novel piroplasmid species detected in D. albiventris and associated A. dubitatum ticks near to Babesia sensu lato clade (Western group-cluster III) and distant from the Australian marsupial-associated piroplasms. Phylogenetic inferences based on two additional molecular markers, namely hsp-70 and cox-1, supported the near-complete 18S rRNA gene phylogenetic inference. Finally, the partial 18S rRNA gene sequences detected in ticks from rodents (R. rattus and H. hydrochaeris) showed 97.2-99.4% identity with the Piroplasmida previously detected in a capybara from Brazil, raising evidence that a still uncharacterized piroplasmid species has been identified in the capybara, the largest rodent species from South America.


Assuntos
Babesia , Didelphis , Marsupiais , Carrapatos , Animais , Austrália , Babesia/genética , Brasil/epidemiologia , Filogenia , Ratos , Roedores
14.
Ticks Tick Borne Dis ; 12(5): 101780, 2021 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34298355

RESUMO

Virginia opossums (Didelphis virginiana) are a common synanthrope in North America, and serve as host to many species of ectoparasites. Research on captive Virginia opossums estimated that opossums eat, on average, 5500 larval ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) per week. To investigate this apparent preference exhibited by opossums for ingesting ticks, we comprehensively analyzed stomach contents of 32 Virginia opossums from central Illinois. Using a dissecting microscope, we searched the contents exhaustively for ticks and tick body parts, without sieving or pre-rinsing the stomach contents. We did not locate any ticks or tick parts in the stomach contents of Virginia opossums. We also performed a vigorous literature search for corroborating evidence of tick ingestion. Our search revealed 23 manuscripts that describe diet analyses of Virginia opossums, 19 of which were conducted on stomach or digestive tract contents and four of which were scat-based analyses. None of the studies identified ticks in their analyses of diet items. We conclude that ticks are not a preferred diet item for Virginia opossums. Considering that wildlife unconditioned to laboratory conditions may exhibit non-typical behaviors, we recommend that lab-based studies of wildlife behavior be groundtruthed with studies based in natural conditions.


Assuntos
Didelphis/fisiologia , Didelphis/parasitologia , Dieta/veterinária , Interações Hospedeiro-Parasita , Carrapatos , Animais , Illinois
15.
Ecohealth ; 18(1): 84-94, 2021 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34213686

RESUMO

Increasing reports of marine mammal deaths have been attributed to the parasite Sarcocystis neurona. Infected opossums, the only known definitive hosts, shed S. neurona sporocysts in their feces. Sporocysts can contaminate the marine environment via overland runoff, and subsequent ingestion by marine mammals can lead to fatal encephalitis. Our aim was to determine the prevalence of S. neurona in opossums from coastal areas of Washington State (USA) and to compare genetic markers between S. neurona in opossums and marine mammals. Thirty-two road-kill opossums and tissue samples from 30 stranded marine mammals meeting inclusion criteria were included in analyses. Three opossums (9.4%) and twelve marine mammals (40%) were confirmed positive for S. neurona via DNA amplification at the ITS1 locus. Genetic identity at microsatellites (sn3, sn7, sn9) and the snSAG3 gene of S. neurona was demonstrated among one harbor porpoise and two opossums. Watershed mapping further demonstrated plausible sporocyst transport pathways from one of these opossums to the location where an infected harbor porpoise carcass was recovered. Our results provide the first reported link between S. neurona genotypes on land and sea in the Pacific Northwest, and further demonstrate how terrestrial pathogen pollution can impact the health of marine wildlife.


Assuntos
Caniformia , Didelphis , Sarcocystis , Sarcocistose , Animais , Noroeste dos Estados Unidos , Sarcocystis/genética , Sarcocistose/epidemiologia , Sarcocistose/parasitologia , Sarcocistose/veterinária
16.
Rev Bras Parasitol Vet ; 30(3): e006521, 2021.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34259741

RESUMO

Protozoan parasites of the genus Sarcocystis are obligatory heteroxenous cyst-forming coccidia that infect a wide variety of animals and encompass approximately 200 described species. At least four Sarcocystis spp. (S. falcatula, S. neurona, S. lindsayi and S. speeri) use opossums (Didelphis spp.) as definitive hosts, and two of them, S. neurona and S. falcatula, are known to cause disease in horses and birds, respectively. Opossums are restricted to the Americas, but their distribution in the Americas is heterogeneous. Five Didelphis spp. are distributed in South America (D. aurita, D. albiventris, D. marsupialis, D. imperfecta and D. pernigra) whereas just one opossum species (D. virginiana) is found in North America. Studies conducted in the last decades show that Sarcocystis spp., derived from South American Didelphis spp., have biological and genetic differences in relation to Sarcocystis spp. shed by the North American opossum D. virginiana. The aim of this review was to address the peculiar scenario of Sarcocystis species shed by South American opossums, with a special focus on diagnosis, epidemiology, and animal infections, as well as the genetic characteristics of these parasites.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Doenças dos Cavalos , Sarcocystis , Sarcocistose , Animais , Aves , Cavalos , Gambás , Sarcocistose/diagnóstico , Sarcocistose/epidemiologia , Sarcocistose/veterinária , América do Sul
17.
Rev Bras Parasitol Vet ; 30(2): e027720, 2021.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34161493

RESUMO

The aims of this study were to determine the seroprevalence of Sarcocystis neurona antibodies in equines in the Ilhéus-Itabuna microregion (BA), and identify possible factors associated with infection. The presence of sporocysts/oocysts of Sarcocystis spp. was also verified in Didelphis spp. A total of 669 serum samples were collected from equines in 56 properties located in 12 municipalities in the region. Indirect fluorescent antibody test was performed with slides containing merozoites of the S. neurona, using a cut-off titer of 1:80. Occurrence of 7.92% of anti-S. neurona antibodies was observed in the sampled equines. The purposes trade and work were significantly associated with the presence of antibodies (p<0.05), and being used for the purpose of work (21.6%) was considered a risk factor, while being used for the purpose of trade (3.6%) was a protective factor. A total of 25 Didelphis spp. was captured for research on sporocysts/oocysts in stool samples and intestinal scrapings, being all negative. Didelphis spp. were all negative for the presence of Sarcocystis spp. and this circumstance does not change the fact that seroprevalence of S. neurona has been observed in horses raised in the southern Bahia.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Doenças dos Cavalos , Sarcocystis , Sarcocistose , Animais , Anticorpos Antiprotozoários , Brasil/epidemiologia , Doenças dos Cavalos/diagnóstico , Doenças dos Cavalos/epidemiologia , Cavalos , Gambás , Sarcocistose/diagnóstico , Sarcocistose/epidemiologia , Sarcocistose/veterinária , Estudos Soroepidemiológicos
18.
Braz J Biol ; 82: e240724, 2021.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34105649

RESUMO

Developing a captive breeding system for the widely hunted Caribbean species of opossum Didelphis marsupialis insularis can greatly aide in the management and conservation of this species in the neo-tropics. Although this species possesses ideal traits for captive breeding in this region (tolerance to high heat and humidity, high reproductive rate, and resistance to disease), challenges due to its aggressive behaviour and limited information on its breeding behaviour have prevented a system from being developed for this species. The present study describes a breeding system, and the reproductive behaviour of this species under captive conditions. Six (1 male; 5 females) adult opossums were maintained and managed for breeding over a ten (10) month period. Pouch litter sizes averaged 5±2.5 with a range of 2 to 8. Gestation length was found to be 13.25±0.96 days and 4 litters (n=23) were successfully weaned at 11-13 weeks. It was found that the male D. m. insularis exhibits behaviours of interest that can serve as indicators for receptivity of the female, and overall, that this species can be successfully reared and bred under captive conditions in the neo-tropics.


Assuntos
Didelphis , Comportamento Reprodutivo , Animais , Região do Caribe , Feminino , Tamanho da Ninhada de Vivíparos , Masculino , Gambás , Gravidez , Reprodução
19.
Vet Parasitol Reg Stud Reports ; 24: 100546, 2021 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34024364

RESUMO

South American opossums of the order Didelphimorphia are considered sentinels for zoonotic infections and environmental diseases, such as for Chagas disease caused by Trypanosoma cruzi. Nevertheless, there is a paucity of data regarding protozoan diseases such Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum in Neotropical marsupials; despite these pathogens have been considered threats to some marsupial species. The aim of this study was to determine whether Didelphis albiventris and Philander frenatus opossums from southern Brazil had been previously exposed to T. cruzi, T. gondii or N. caninum. Opossum samples were obtained by live-trapping of free-ranging animals and collection at wildlife rehabilitation centers in Rio Grande do Sul (RS) state, Brazil. The detection of anti-T. cruzi and anti-T. gondii antibodies was performed by indirect hemagglutination and anti-N. caninum antibodies by competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. In total, samples were collected from 76 marsupials from nine municipalities in RS state, including 69 D. albiventris (white-eared opossum), and seven were P. frenatus (southern four-eyed opossum). For T. cruzi, 11% were seropositive, and for T. gondii 26% were seropositive. None of the marsupials sampled here were seropositive for N. caninum. Risk factor analysis showed that free-living animals were about five-fold more likely to be infected by T. gondii than were rescued animals. Our study showed the exposure of Neotropical marsupials (D. albiventris and P. frenatus) to protozoan pathogens T. cruzi and T. gondii, while no evidence of N. caninum exposure was found. The set of results presented here may have an effect on ecology and conservation of the studied species and may also indicate possible sentinels of these pathogen circulation.


Assuntos
Coccidiose , Didelphis , Neospora , Toxoplasma , Toxoplasmose Animal , Trypanosoma cruzi , Animais , Anticorpos Antiprotozoários , Brasil/epidemiologia , Coccidiose/epidemiologia , Coccidiose/veterinária , Estudos Soroepidemiológicos , Toxoplasmose Animal/epidemiologia
20.
Parasitology ; 148(8): 947-955, 2021 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33879271

RESUMO

Understanding the role of species traits in mediating ecological interactions and shaping community structure is a key question in ecology. In this sense, parasite population parameters allow us to estimate the functional importance of traits in shaping the strength of interactions among hosts and parasites in a network. The aim of this study was to survey and analyse the small mammal-helminth network in a forest reserve of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest in order to understand (i) how functional traits (type of parasite life cycle, site of infection in their host, host and parasite body length, host diet, host locomotor habit and host activity period) and abundance influence host­parasite interactions, (ii) whether these traits explain species roles, and (iii) if this relationship is consistent across different parasite population parameters (presence and absence, mean abundance and prevalence). Networks were modular and their structural patterns did not vary among the population parameters. Functional traits and abundance shaped the interactions observed between parasites and hosts. Host species abundance, host diet and locomotor habit affected their centrality and/or vulnerability to parasites. For helminths, infection niche was the main trait determining their central roles in the networks.


Assuntos
Helmintíase Animal/parasitologia , Helmintos/fisiologia , Marsupiais/parasitologia , Doenças dos Roedores/parasitologia , Animais , Brasil/epidemiologia , Didelphis/parasitologia , Helmintíase Animal/epidemiologia , Helmintos/anatomia & histologia , Helmintos/classificação , Interações Hospedeiro-Parasita , Doenças dos Roedores/epidemiologia , Roedores
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