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Seroepidemiological study of Taenia saginata cysticercosis in Swaziland

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Publication date
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Type of Publication:
Articles & Journals
Focus Region:
Sub-Saharan Africa
Focus Topic:
Health & Diseases
Type of Risk:
Biological & environmental
Harrison, L.J.S.; Hoque, M.; Hughes, G.; Tewes, M.S.; Wright, S.H.
Centre for Tropical Veterinary Medicine, UK

A cross-sectional study of Taenia saginata cysticercosis in Swaziland using a serodiagnostic ELISA for parasite antigen is described. The seroprevalence and the levels of parasite antigen were compared in the sera of cattle from different geographical localities, and from areas of high or low population density. Cattle from the Lowveldt region, which has a hot and dry climate relative to the other areas investigated, exhibited significantly higher serum antigen levels. Seroprevalence was also higher in the Lowveldt but this difference was not found to be significant. Within the Lowveldt, antigen levels were found to be slightly elevated in cattle from more highly populated areas. It is suggested that either human behaviour and/or practices in animal husbandry, or increased susceptibility of cattle to reinfection at certain times of the year, may enhance transmission in the Lowveldt since climatic conditions in this region are not conducive to transmission.