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Open access

Jacek Sroka and Jolanta Szymańska

Abstract

The article describes the analysis of Toxoplasma gondii infection among people and animals from the selected rural households in the Lublin province. To identify the potential sources of infection, parasitological and/or PCR examinations of the samples of water, soil, cats’ faeces, and meat eaten by the household members were carried out. The study indicated high percentages of seropositive results among the household members (N=57) and domestic animals (N=94) - 61.4 % and 53.2%, respectively. In two households, the parasite was detected in drinking water. The study results seem to confirm the possibility of family character of toxoplasmosis, and point at the environmental conditions leading to the infection in rural environment.

Open access

Jacek Karamon, Jacek Sroka, Tomasz Cencek, Maciej Kochanowski and Joanna Dąbrowska

Abstract

The aim of the study was to estimate the effectiveness of intestinal scraping technique (IST) in the detection of Echinococcus multilocularis. The experimental assessment of the limit of detection and comparison with “gold standard” (sedimentation and counting technique - SCT) was also performed. Samples of fox small intestines experimentally enriched with known numbers of E. multilocularis tapeworms, were used. Twenty four samples containing 10, 30, 60, and 90 E. multilocularis tapeworms were prepared. Moreover, in order to compare IST with SCT, 127 intestines of foxes were examined using both methods. The limit of detection was estimated at 30 E. multilocularis tapeworms per sample of the intestine. Moreover, mean number of Echinococcus found by IST were several dozen times lower than the real content of these tapeworms in the samples (on average only 2 to 3.2% of worms were recovered). Among 127 intestinal samples examined with the use of two methods, eight samples (8.2%) were positive by SCT and only two (1.6%) when IST was used. A relatively high limit of detection estimated experimentally in the first part of the study, as well as, the results obtained in field investigations showed clearly that IST method could significantly decrease the reliability of the results of investigations, especially carried out in regions where a very low prevalence of E. multilocularis occurs or in countries, which want to demonstrate that they are free from this parasite.

Open access

K. Stojecki, J. Sroka, J. Karamon, P. Kusyk and T. Cencek

Abstract

Giardia intestinalis is a widespread parasitic protozoa which has great significance as a public health threat. Molecular diagnostics of stool sample can be unreliable because of the presence of inhibitors of enzymatic reactions. The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of selected pre-treatment methods of fecal samples for further PCR-based diagnostics of G. intestinalis, and the effect of each component of pre-treatment solutions on PCR reactions. Seven stool concentration techniques were compared. The results showed that the most efficient concentration method for stool sample preparation for detection of G. intestinalis by PCR is centrifugal flotation with Percoll (with saturated NaNO3 as the flotation solution). This method is relatively inexpensive, less labor-intensive, and suitable for epidemiological monitoring and clinical investigations.

Open access

Angelina Wójcik-Fatla, Jacek Sroka, Violetta Zając, Jacek Zwoliński, Anna Sawczyn-Domańska, Anna Kloc, Ewa Bilska-Zając, Robert Chmura and Jacek Dutkiewicz

Abstract

Introduction

Exposure to zoonotic factors in veterinary practice is closely related to the nature of the work. The main aim of the study was to determine the risk of selected zoonotic infections among the occupational group of veterinarians in Poland.

Material and Methods

Blood samples of 373 veterinarians (162 males and 211 females) from 12 provinces of Poland were collected by the venipuncture of a forearm for serological tests. Commercial immunoenzymatic tests (ELISA) were used for detection of specific IgG antibodies to Echinococcus granulosus, IgM and IgG to Leptospira spp., and IgM, IgA, and I and II phase IgG to Coxiella burnetii. Enzyme-linked fluorescence assays (ELFA) were used to detect IgM and IgG antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii.

Results

Positive results were found in 209 (56.0%) veterinarians for at least one of the examined diseases. The overall proportion of participants found to have specific Toxoplasma gondii antibodies in the IgM and/or IgG assays amounted to 44.5%. The presence of Coxiella burnetii antibodies was found in 16 (4.3%) subjects, while Leptospira spp. antibodies were detected in 63 (16.9%) veterinarians. Among the 373 veterinarians examined, no Echinococcus granulosus antibodies were found.

Conclusion

Results of the study seem to indicate a slightly elevated risk of Toxoplasma gondii infection and a moderate risk of infection with Leptospira spp. and Coxiella burnetii in veterinarians.

Open access

Ewa Cisak, Angelina Wójcik-Fatla, Jacek Sroka, Violetta Zając, Ewa Bilska-Zając, Ewa Chmurzyńska and Jacek Dutkiewicz

Abstract

Serum samples from 123 cattle, 95 wild boars, and 43 deer (red deer, roe deer, and fallow deer) from the territory of eastern Poland were examined by the ELISA for the presence of specific antibodies against tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV). The rates of positive response in the animals were 4.1%, 16.8%, and 11.6%, respectively. Examination of 37 blood samples from deer with RT-PCR revealed only one positive result in a roe deer (2.7%). The relatively high serologic response rate in wild boars was due to a very high response rate (35.7%) in the Chełm district, which accounted for 94% of the total positive results. These findings seem to indicate that the Chełm district is most probably an endemic area of TBEV.

Open access

Tomasz Cencek, Jacek Karamon, Jacek Sroka and Jolanta Zdybel

Abstract

This article presents the essential stages leading to development of a modified method for Hypoderma bovis protein transfer, and estimation of the usefulness of semi-quantitative densitometric analysis of western-blottig results. The principal of the method was to incubate the gel obtained with the native electrophoresis method in buffer containing SDS prior to transfer of the separated proteins of L1 H. bovis onto nitrocellulose membrane. In two experiments, the authors estimated the efficacy of the new method and the possibility of using this method for semi-quantitative densitometric investigations.

Open access

Jacek Sroka, Zygmunt Giżejewski, Angelina Wójcik-Fatla, Krzysztof Stojecki, Ewa Bilska-Zając, Jacek Dutkiewicz, Tomasz Cencek, Jacek Karamon, Violetta Zając, Paweł Kusyk, Joanna Dąbrowska and Maciej Kochanowski

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to assess the possible influence of beavers on the contamination of lake water with zoonotic parasites Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium spp., with respect to the risk to human health. A total of 79 water samples were taken around the habitats of beavers from 14 localities situated in the recreational Masurian Lake District (north-eastern Poland). Water was sampled in the spring and autumn seasons, at different distances from beavers’ lodges (0-2, 10, 30, and 50 m). The samples were examined for the presence of (oo)cysts of zoonotic protozoa Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium spp. by direct fluorescence assay (DFA) and by nested and real time PCR. By DFA, the presence of Giardia cysts was found in 36 samples (45.6%) and the presence of Cryptosporidium oocysts in 26 samples (32.9%). Numbers of Giardia cysts, Cryptosporidium oocysts, and summarised (oo)cysts of both parasites showed a significant variation depending on locality. The numbers of Giardia cysts significantly decreased with the distance from beavers’ lodges while the numbers of Cryptosporidium oocysts did not show such dependence. The amount of Giardia cysts in samples collected in spring was approximately 3 times higher than in autumn. Conversely, a larger number of Cryptosporidium oocysts were detected in samples collected in autumn than in spring. By PCR, Giardia DNA was found in 38 samples (48.1%) whereas DNA of Cryptosporidium was found in only 7 samples (8.9%). Eleven Giardia isolates were subjected to phylogenetic analysis by restriction fragment length polymorphism PCR or sequencing which evidenced their belonging to zoonotic assemblages: A (3 isolates) and B (8 isolates). In conclusion, water in the vicinity of beavers’ lodges in the tested region was markedly contaminated with (oo)cysts of Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium spp., which confirms the potential role of beavers as a reservoir of these parasites and indicates a need for implementation of appropriate preventive measures to protect tourists’ health.

Open access

Aleksandra Gawlikowska-Sroka, Paweł Dąbrowski, Jacek Szczurowski and Tomasz Staniowski

Abstract

In this paper, we test the hypothesis that indices of nutritional stress from enamel hypoplasia increase the incidence of indicators of developmental instability in fluctuating asymmetry, even in high social status individuals. The studied material consisted of a medieval sample of 58 skulls from the Wrocław area. Radiographs were taken in postero-anterior (P-A) and base projections. Images were scanned and calibrated by means of MicroStation 95 Academic Edition software, and measurements of the skull images were used to estimate fluctuating asymmetry. The presence of hypoplasia and caries was assessed using standard anthropological methods and all data was statistically analysed. The highest levels of fluctuating asymmetry were observed in the skull base region. Hypoplasia was observed in 40% and caries in 55.5%. Differences were noted in the level of fluctuating asymmetry in relationship to the presence or absence of hypoplasia, where a higher level predisposes individuals to enamel hypoplasia and a decline in buffering capacity, regardless of their socio-economic status.

Open access

Aleksandra Gawlikowska-Sroka, Barbara Kwiatkowska, Jacek Szczurowski, Stanisław Gronkiewicz and Paweł Dąbrowski

Abstract

In the study two human skulls recovered from archaeological excavations at St. Elizabeth’s Church in Wrocław, dating from the 13-14th centuries were assessed. Direct measurements of each skull were recorded, and X-ray images in P-A, lateral and basal projections were taken. The skulls represented adult males. Large, bony, lobular tumours were found on the palatine bones of both skulls. X-ray examination identified these tumours as osteoid osteomas, which are benign bone tumours that may originate in the periosteum or may be located inside the bone, distorting the maxilla or mandible. However, osteoid osteoma of the palatine is very rare. This study extends our knowledge regarding the health and diseases of historical populations.

Open access

Jacek Karamon, Maciej Kochanowski, Joanna Dąbrowska, Jacek Sroka, Mirosław Różycki, Ewa Bilska-Zając and Tomasz Cencek

Abstract

The aim of the study was to estimate the current prevalence of E. multilocularis in selected populations of red foxes in Poland and to evaluate the changes in prevalence of this parasite by comparison with the results obtained in the same area during earlier surveillance. The investigations were performed in the area of four Polish provinces: 2 eastern/south-eastern (Lubelskie and Podkarpackie) and 2 south-western (Śląskie and Opolskie). Five hundred red foxes coming from the investigated areas were examined between 2013 and 2014 to estimate the current situation in selected provinces. Moreover, 550 red foxes from the same areas examined between 2007 and 2013 were used for comparison of differences in E. multilocularis prevalences in time. Intestines were examined with the use of the sedimentation and counting technique. Among 500 foxes examined in the current study, 118 were positive for E. multilocularis. There were differences in prevalence between individual provinces: Podkarpackie Province - 54.6%, Lubelskie Province - 18.9%, Śląskie Province - 11.7%, and Opolskie Province - 3.9%. Statistical analysis demonstrated that in most cases there were no differences in prevalence between the current results and the results from previous studies. Only in Opolskie Province was a statistically significant increase observed between 2010 and 2014. A stable degree of infection in the region with high prevalence of this parasite was demonstrated. However, a significant increase in the region with very low prevalence of E. multilocularis points out the necessity to monitor this infection during the coming years to control the progress of the disease