HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:187-191, 2001

Dynamics of IgG subclasses in dogs treated with Dexamethasone and infected with Toxocara canis

A. Paz-Silva, A. Romasanta, R. Sánchez-Andrade, R. Panadero, J. L. Suárez, A. Sánchez-Andrade1, R. Díez-Bańos*, P. Morrondo

Parasitología y Enfermedades Parasitarias, Departamento de Patología Animal, Facultad de Veterinaria, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela. 27071-Lugo, Spain; 1Hospital General de Lugo, Servicio de Reumatología, E-mail: dibapa@lugo.usc.es.


A study to evaluate the effect of dexamethasone on the humoral immune response to Toxocara canis in dogs was conducted. Dexamethasone (1 mg dexamethasone-phosphate and 2 mg dexamethasone-g-picolinate) was subcutaneously injected into one group of normal Beagle puppies (G-D) during 28 consecutive days, and another two groups remained untreated (G-I and G-C). On the 15th day of the study, G-D and G-I were infected with T. canis embryonated eggs. Total IgG, IgG1 and IgG2 responses were assessed by ELISA. IgG1 values increased when IgG2 fell in the untreated and infected puppies, whereas the kinetics of IgG1 and IgG2 antibodies was similar in the dogs treated with dexamethasone. The IgG1 response was significantly higher in the dexamethasone-treated dogs, but IgG2 antibodies were lower than in G-I until the 10th weeks after infection. It is concluded that an anti-inflammatory therapy with dexamethasone during 28 days did not suppress the humoral immune response against T. canis infection, but it was able to modify it, affecting especially the IgG2 response.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:193-199, 2001

The effect of cyclophosphamide on the cellular and humoral immune responses in experimental Toxocara canis infestation


Parasitological Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Hlinkova 3, 040 01 Košice, Slovak Republic, E-mail: dvoroz@saske.sk


The treatment with immunosuppressive drugs can negati-vely influence a immune response and so increase the in-tensity of a parasite infection in hosts. The effect of cyclo-phosphamide (CY) treatment on cellular and humoral im-mune responses and the intensity of infection in mice with larval toxocarosis were studied. The proliferative response of spleen T- and B- cells, the numbers of CD4+ and CD8+ T- cells, the concentrations of cytokines IFN-g, IL-5 and antibodies IgM and IgG2 were detected. Administration of CY to healthy animals signifi-cantly decreased the proliferative responses of splenic T- and B- cells to Concanavalin A and lipopolysaccharide. However, the levels of serum cytokines IFN-g and IL-5 re-mained unchanged. Oral infection with 1000 Toxocara ca-nis eggs enhanced the proliferation of T- and B- cells to both nonspecific mitogens, especially in the latter phase of infectious process. An initial decrease in number of CD4+ and CD8+ T- cell subpopulations in the beginning of the infection was followed by an increase. The infection itself elevated the levels of IFN-g and IL-5 and specific anti-Toxocara IgM and IgG2 antibodies. After the CY induced immunosuppression and subsequent infection the prolifera-tive activity of T- and B- cells were remarkably inhibited by the third week post infection and the reduction in CD4+ and CD8+ T- cells subsets was detected in immunosup-pressed mice throughout the whole study. The concentra-tions of IFN-g and IL-5 in serum were also significantly re-duced. IgM and IgG2 antibodies in CY treated mice had similar kinetics as detected in infected animals. The only difference was that the production of specific immuno-globulins remained constantly at lower level. In compari-son with infected host without immunosuppressive treat-ment CY increased the number of larvae present in mus-cles and brain, 35.7 % and 36 %, respectively. The results suggest the inhibition of regulative and effector immune mechanisms caused by the immunosuppressant and conse-cutive the more intensive parasitization in organs of hosts.

HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:201-204, 2001

The influence of glucocorticoid on the blood lymphocytes in Trichinella spiralis infected mice


Department of Biology and Medical Parasitology; *Department of Biology and Environmental Studies, Karol Marcinkowski University of Medical Sciences, Fredry 10, 61-701 Poznań, Poland, E-mail: kboczon@eucalyptus.usoms.poznan.pl


The effect of glucocorticoid methylprednisolone (CS) on changes of peripheral blood T lymphocytes subpopula-tions in mice infected with Trichinella spiralis larvae was investigated. Reproductive Capacity Index (RCI) of mice infected by a single dose of T. spiralis larvae (strain MSUS/PO60/ISS3): 300/mice was 40 ± 1.35 In infected mice, two peaks of leukocyte numbers were observed – the first at the 8th day after infection (corres-ponding to intestinal stage of infection) and the second, at 40th day (corresponding to muscular stage of infection). Among lymphocytes, the first peak was noticed at day 8, and second at day 31. CS injection markedly reduced first peak, and expanded second peak, beginning from 31st till 45th day after injection. At this time during the muscular phase of trichinellosis a marked increase of CD8+ lympho-cytes in peripheral blood was observed. All of the CS in-jected mice were alive, while in control group mortality was as 2/13. The protective effect of corticoid on survival of T. spiralis infected mice may depend on the its influence on T CD4 + lymphocytes.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:205-209, 2001

The isoenzymes of α-amylase from the intestine of Ascaris suum


Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Biology, University of Warmia and Masuria, ul. Żołnierska 14, 10-561 Olsztyn, Poland, E-mail: zlotow@matman.uwm.edu.pl


Two distinct isoenzymes of α-amylase were identified in the intestine of Ascaris suum. They were purified to homo-geneity. The molecular weight of α-I1 amylase was 75 kDa and α-I2 was 82 kDa. The isoelectric point was at 4.7 and at 4.5, respectively. The α-I1 amylase had optimum pH of 7.44 and optimum temperature at 50°C. The α-I2 amylase showed the maximum of its activity at pH 6.9 and in the temperature of 40°C. It was unaffected by calcium and EDTA. The α-I1 isoenzyme was activated by Ca2+ and in-hibited by EDTA. Both isoenzymes were strongly inhibi-ted by -SH reagent iodoacetic acid. The protein inhibitor of α-amylase from wheat inhibited α-I1 to 20 % of its activi-ty, while the α-I2 amylase was activated by it. Generally the α-I1 isoenzyme had higher activity than α-I2, especially with amylose, amylopectin and starch. Both isoenzymes showed weak maltase- and trehalase-like activity.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:211-214, 2001

The prevalence of equine gastrointestinal parasites in the Slovak Republic


Parasitological Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Hlinkova 3, 040 01 Košice, Slovak Republic, E-mail: konig@saske.sk


During 1998-2001 a total of 913 horses from 46 stud farms all over the Slovak Republic were investigated for gastro-intestinal parasites. In the coprological samples were de-tected 63.75 % of strongyle eggs and 10.95 % Parascaris equorum. Strongyloides westeri, Dicrocoelium dendriti-cum, Anoplocephala spp. were detected in low numbers. Larval identification revealed Cyathostominae larvae as being predominant in all larval cultures on all farms, ac-counting for more than 90 % of the larvae. This type of lar-vae has been found on all cultures investigated. Gyalocep-halus capitatus was identified on 20 %, Poteriostomun spp. and Cylicostephanus spp. on 4 %. The percentage va-lues of large strongyles was: Strongylus vulgaris 8 %, S. equinus, S. edentatus and Oesophagodontus spp. 4 %. The prevalence of Trichostrongylus axei was recorded on 12 %.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:215-219, 2001

Prevalence of Echinococcus multilocularis in red foxes in the Slovak Republic

P. Dubinský , M. Várady, K. Reiterová, M. Miterpáková, Ľ. Turčeková

Parasitological Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Hlinkova 3, 040 01 Košice, Slovak Republic, E-mail: dubinsky@saske.sk


The occurrence of Echinococcus multilocularis in red foxes was investigated in the entire Slovak Republic. The average prevalence in 2000 was 24.8 % with a mean intensity of 1759 worms (range 4-15,000) per animal. The parasite was widespread on 71.1 % of the territory. The highest prevalences were observed in the regions neighbouring with the Czech Republic and Poland. In addition, a higher E. multilocularis prevalence was recorded in spring (26.8 %) than in autumn (22.7 %), with female foxes being more often infected in spring, while in the autumn higher prevalences were found in male foxes. Infection intensities of more than 1000 worms were found in four animals. The rapid spreading of E. multilocularis from border regions to other parts of the Slovak Republic is discussed.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:221-226, 2001

On the species identity of Ascaridia galli (Schrank, 1788) and Ascaridia dissimilis (Perez Vigueras, 1931): a comparative genetic study.


1Parasitological Institute, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Hlinkova 3, 040 01 Košice, Slovak Republic, E-mail: snabel@saske.sk; 2Section for Parasitology, Department of Veterinary Microbiology, The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, Dyrlägevej 100, 1870 Frederiksberg C, Denmark; 3Department of Veterinary Microbiology, Sokoine University of Agriculture, Box 3019, Morogoro, United Republic of Tanzania; 4Parasitology Laboratory, College of Veterinary Medicine, China Agricultural University, 100094 Beijing, China.


Poultry parasites A. galli and A. dissimilis from chickens and turkeys, respectively, were electrophoretically compared to estimate their taxonomic status. Allozyme analysis revealed fixed genetic differences at 41.6% of the examined loci suggesting the existence of two biologically different species. Five enzymes, PGM, MPI, SDH, MDH and LDH, were demonstrated to be diagnostic for A. galli and A. dissimilis. Although occasional findings of A. galli in naturally infected turkeys were reported in the literature, allozyme data gathered are indicative of strong intrinsic barriers preventing the genetic exchange between the two species. In the present study, all specimens recovered from the chickens and turkeys were attributable to their typical hosts. Limited of geographical variation in electrophoretic patterns was detected among A. galli populations from three distinct regions (Denmark, Tanzania, China).


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:227-230, 2001

Karyological studies on oculate and fin-tailed cercariae from Melanopsis praemorsa collected in Israel


Institute of Experimental Pathology and Parasitology - BAS, Sofia 1113, Bulgaria; *H.W. Manter Laboratory of Parasitology, 529-W Nebraska Hall, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska 68588-0514, USA; **Department of Human Microbiology, Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel


Karyological studies were conducted on three oculate cer-cariae - Cercaria levantina 18 (number of chromosomes, 2n=12), and Cercariae melanopsi VI and VII (number of chromosomes, 2n=14). The cercariae were obtained from naturally infected Melanopsis praemorsa snails collected in northern Israel. The sizes and morphology of the chro-mosomes were determined. It was shown that Cercaria levantina 18 and C. melanopsi VI and VII have two distinct groups of chromosomes, one comprising large-sized and the other smaller chromosomes. In both, the size-ratio bet-ween the 2 groups was 1.5:1. The 2 C. melanopsi cercariae displayed indistinguishable karyotypes. The main differen-ce between the karyotypes of C. levantina 18 and the two C. melanopsi lay in the number and morphology of their small-sized chromosomes. Basing of the similarity of the genome structure of the studied cercariae we accept that all three cercariae seem to belong to the same genus of tre-matode. The morphometric characteristics of the chromo-somes of these 3 cercariae closely resembled those of a va-riety of opisthorchioid trematode species described in the literature, and they probably belong to that group of trema-todes.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:231-235, 2001

New observations on Vasorhabdochona cablei (Nematoda: Rhabdochonidae) with remarks to the family Rhabdochonidae


Institute of Parasitology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Branišovská 31, 370 05 České Budějovice, Czech Republic, E-mail: moravec@paru.cas.cz; 1Institute of Biology, National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), A. P. 70-153, 04510 México, D. F., Mexico


The rhabdochonid nematode Vasorhadbochona cablei Martin et Zam, 1967 is redescribed from specimens found in the liver and mesenteries of the fish Gobiomorus macu-latus (Günther) (Eleotridae, Perciformes) from the Cuitz-mala River in Chamela, State of Jalisco, western Mexico. Some taxonomically important morphological features (shape of oral aperture, number and arrangement of oral papillae, presence of a gubernaculum) are described in this species for the first time. This is the first record of V. cab-lei from the freshwater environment, from a new host spe-cies, and from Mexico. The validity of the genus Vasor-habdochona Martin et Zam, 1967 is confirmed and its sta-tus in the classification system of the Rhabdochonidae is discussed. A key to genera of the Rhabdochonidae is pro-vided.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:237-241, 2001

Central nervous system as a target of helminth migration in humans


Department of Tropical Medicine, 3rd Clinic of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, Faculty Hospital Bulovka, Studničkova 7, 128 00 Prague 2, Czech Republic, E-mail: lkolar@lf1.cuni.cz



The human central nervous system (CNS) is not the usual site of helminth location. Conditions under which parasites reach the CNS still remain to be solved in many species. Nevertheless, the selection of specific migration route by helminths seems to be the most important. Majority of lite-rature data reports the dissemination of the most known ne-uropathogens (Paragonimus, Fasciola, Taenia, Multiceps, Echinococcus, Spirometra, Ascaris, Toxocara, Baylisasca-ris, Lagochilascaris, Trichinella, Angiostrongylus, Gna-thostoma, Strongyloides, Schistosoma, Wuchereria, Brugia, Loa, Onchocerca) through systemic circulation. Ho-wever, also other pathways can be seen. The type of path-way depends on factors such as parasite morphology/ bio-logy and the character of ”transport system”.


HELMINTHOLOGIA, 38, 4:243-250, 2001

Workshop on bird schistosomes and cercarial dermatitis held at Dolní Věstonice (Czech Republic) September 10-14, 2001

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