The present study used the indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT) to determine the seroprevalence of Sarcocystis neurona, Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora spp., and evaluated the variables associated with these infections among 506 apparently healthy horses, reared in the south of the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. This study was conducted between April 2012 and October 2013. Among the horses, the true prevalence of S. neurona was 26% (95% CI: 22.0-30.4%), T. gondii 19.9% (95% CI: 15.5-24.8%) and Neospora spp. 23.9% (95% CI: 19.9-28.1%); and among the farms, 88.3% (95% CI: 74.4-91.6%), 71.6% (95% CI: 41-92.8%) and 85% (95% CI: 70.7-96.1%), respectively. Regarding mixed infection, 17 horses (3.4%) were seropositive for both S. neurona and T. gondii, 16 (3.2%) for T. gondii and Neospora spp. and 14 (2.8%) for S. neurona and Neospora spp. The associations between seropositivity and variables relating to the structure of the farm, management and health were analyzed using the logistic regression analysis, through the generalized estimating equations (GEE). The results suggest that the south of Minas Gerais is an enzootic area for S. neurona, T. gondii and Neospora spp. among horses, with prevalence of asymptomatic subclinical or chronic infections.
Horses are highly susceptible to parasitism. Helminth infections cause great harm to the animals and to their breeders. This study aimed at evaluating socioeconomic, cultural and management factors associated with the prevalence of gastrointestinal helminths of horses. A total of 40 farmas the Mangalarga Marchador horse breed were visited in southern Minas Gerais, Brazil, where interviews were conducted. Horse feces were collected on the farms and coproparasitological laboratory tests were conducted to quantify the infection and to identify parasites. Data were tabulated in Epidata and analyzed using the SPSS 20.0 software. A great similarity between breeds was observed, specifically in their profiles, as well as in their animal management techniques and in their parasite control habits. The cyathostome was the most prevalent helminth, followed by Oxyuris and large strongyles. The farms which prioritize only equine production are less likely to have animals with massive helminth infection.
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