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Toxoplasmosis is caused by a one-celled protozoan parasite known as Toxoplasma gondii. In the United States, it is estimated that approximately 30% of cats, the primary carriers, have been infected by T. gondii. Most humans contract toxoplasmosis by eating cyst-contaminated raw or undercooked meat, vegetables, or milk products or when they come into contact with the T. gondii eggs from cat feaces while cleaning a cat's litterbox, gardening, or playing in a sandbox. Approx 1 in 4 (more than 60 million) people in the USA are infected with the parasite, and in the UK between 0.5 and 1% of individuals become infected each year. By the age of 50, 40% of people test positive for the parasite. The predilection of this parasite is for the central nervous system (CNS) causing behavioral and personality alterations as well as fatal necrotizing encephalitis, and is especially dangerous for HIV infected patients. Though there have been tremendous strides in our understanding of the biology of Toxoplasma gondii in the last decade, there has been no systemic review of all of the information that has accumulated. Toxoplasma gondii provides the first comprehensive summary of literature on this organism by leading experts in the field who were responsible for organising the 7th International Congress on Toxoplasmosis in May 2003. It offeres systematic reviews of the biology of this pathogen as well as descriptions of the methods and resources used. Within the next year the T. gondii genome will be completed making this an indispensable research resource for biologists, physicians, parasitologists, and for all those contemplating experiments using T. gondii. * Serves as a model for understanding invasion of host cells by parasites, immune response, motility, differentiation, phylogenetics, evolution and organelle acquisition * Discusses the protocols related to genetic manipulation, cell biology and animal models while also providing reference material on available resources for working with this organism
Traditionally, laboratory identification of parasites has relied upon various phenotypic procedures that detect their morphological, biological, and immunological features. Because these procedures tend to be time-consuming and technically demanding, molecular methods based on nucleic acid amplification technologies have been increasingly utilized for rapid, sensitive, and specific characterization of parasites. The large number of original and modified molecular protocols that have been developed over the years creates a dilemma for those attempting to adopt the most appropriate protocol for streamlined identification and detection of human pathogenic organisms of interest. Part of a four-volume collection, Molecular Detection of Human Parasitic Pathogens provides a reliable and comprehensive resource on the molecular detection and identification of major human parasitic pathogens. This volume contains expert contributions from international scientists involved in human parasitic pathogen research and diagnosis. Following a similar format throughout, each chapter includes: A brief review on the classification, biology, epidemiology, clinical features, and diagnosis of an important pathogenic parasitic genus/group An outline of clinical sample collection and preparation procedures and a selection of representative stepwise molecular protocols A discussion on further research needs relating to improved diagnoses of major human parasitic pathogens This versatile reference on molecular detection and identification of major human parasitic pathogens is an indispensable tool for upcoming and experienced medical, veterinary, and industrial laboratory scientists engaged in parasite characterization. It is also suitable as a textbook for undergraduate and graduate students majoring in parasitology.
Found worldwide from Alaska to Australasia, Toxoplasma gondii knows no geographic boundaries. The protozoan is the source of one of the most common parasitic infections in humans, livestock, companion animals, and wildlife, and has gained notoriety with its inclusion on the list of potential bioterrorism microbes. In the two decades since the publication of the first edition of Toxoplasmosis of Animals and Humans there has been an explosion of knowledge concerning T. gondii and toxoplasmosis. Still used extensively as a cell model, its genome has recently been published making it a subject of even greater scientific interest. Keeping the organizational style that made the previous edition so popular and usable, this second edition has been completely revised and updated. New in the Second Edition: Expanded information on the cultivation, maintenance, and preservation of T. gondii Expanded information on the cell biology and molecular biology of the parasite Reviews all literature from the past 20 years for each domestic animal Summarizes information on the worldwide prevalence of toxoplasmosis in pregnant women and the devastating disease it can cause in newborn Written by one of the pioneers of the field, the book provides unique information on all known host types for this parasite. It distills the voluminous and potentially confusing scientific literature that has grown geometrically in the 20 years since the publication of the first edition into a comprehensive resource. The single author approach ensures a strong foundation in the biology and a seamless integration of topics. The new edition of this groundbreaking work is the only volume to cover toxoplasmosis of animals and humans thoroughly in one source. It supplies an entry point to further research by cutting through the morass of literature to identify the most relevant references.
This volume covers a wide range of systems, exemplified by a broad spectrum of micro- and macro-parasites, impacting humans, domestic and wild animals and plants. It illustrates the importance of evolutionary considerations and concepts, both as thinking tools for qualitative understanding or as guiding tools for decision making in major disease control programs. * Brings together a range of articles from scientists from different fields of research and/or disease control, but with a common interest in studying the biology of a variety of parasitic diseases * Evolutionary theory has an important role to play in both the interpretation of host and parasitic dynamics and the design and application of disease control programs
Each issue of Transactions B is devoted to a specific area of the biological sciences, including clinical science. All papers are peer reviewed and edited to the highest standards. Published on the 29th of each month, Transactions B is essential reading for all biologists.