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Open access

Agnieszka Tylkowska, Bogumiła Pilarczyk, Renata Pilarczyk, Michał Zyśko and Agnieszka Tomza-Marciniak

Abstract

Introduction: Foxes are a reservoir of parasites that are dangerous to humans. The aim of the study was to determine the parameters associated with the occurrence of tapeworms in red foxes in north-western Poland.

Material and Methods: Parasitological sections were taken from 620 red foxes using IST and SCT methods in 18 districts of West Pomerania Province.

Results: The extensity of fox infection with tapeworms was 61%. Echinococcus multilocularis, Mesocestoides spp., Dipylidium caninum, and specimens of the genus Taenia were identified. E. multilocularis was found in 11 districts. Mesocestoides spp. demonstrated the highest prevalence (41.3%), while E. multilocularis demonstrated the lowest prevalence (2.9%); however, it infected foxes with the greatest mean intensity (235.6 tapeworms per fox). The most common co-occurrence in a single host organism was observed for Mesocestoides spp. and tapeworms of the genus Taenia; however, no examples were found of coinfection by E. multilocularis and D. caninum.

Conclusion: The occurrence of tapeworms in foxes was high in West Pomerania Province and was often higher than observed in previous years. For this reason, the risk of parasite transmission to humans and domestic animals is mounting. The risk of infection is also amplifying due to the growth of the fox population.

Open access

Agnieszka Rosińska, Magdalena Jarosz, Dorota Szopińska, Hanna Dorna and Krystyna Tylkowska

ABSTRACT

Milk thistle (Silybum marianum (L.) Gaertn.) is one of the most important medicinal plants. The fungi infesting its seeds may negatively influence their germination and health-promoting properties. However, there is no standard method for S. marianum seed health testing. The aim of this study was to find a suitable method for the detection and identification of fungi in/on milk thistle seeds. The following tests were used: deep-freeze blotter test, blotter test with an addition of mannitol, blotter test with an addition of polyethylene glycol, agar test on potato-dextrose agar (PDA), agar test on PDA after seed disinfection, agar test on reduced PDA and an agar test on reduced PDA after seed disinfection. Seeds were incubated for 10 and 14 days. The most prevalent fungi were: Alternaria alternata, Botrytis cinerea, Cladosporium spp., Fusarium spp., Penicillium spp., Rhizopus nigricans and Verticillium spp. A deep-freeze blotter test followed by a blotter test with an addition of mannitol and a blotter test with an addition of polyethylene glycol performed for 14 days could be recommended for the further study of milk thistle seed health testing, as they favoured the growth of the most important fungi.