Indexed on: 11 Apr '13Published on: 11 Apr '13Published in: Mycopathologia
Paracoccidioides brasiliensis is the etiological agent of paracoccidioidomycosis, a systemic mycosis that affects mainly rural workers in Brazil and other Latin American countries. The participation of domestic and wild animal species in the ecoepidemiology of paracoccidioidomycosis is not well understood. The objective of this study was to evaluate P. brasiliensis infection in dairy goats. The humoral immune response to the gp43 antigen, the main antigen used for paracoccidioidomycosis serodiagnosis and seroepidemiology, was evaluated in two goats immunized with inactivated P. brasiliensis yeast cells. Both animals produced antibodies against the P. brasiliensis gp43 antigen, detected by ELISA, 2 weeks after immunization. A total of 202 goat serum samples were analyzed by ELISA and the immunodiffusion test using P. brasiliensis gp43 and exoantigen as antigens. The seropositivity observed by ELISA was 26.2 % although no reactivity was detected by immunodiffusion. The animals over 18 months of age showed significantly higher positivity (40 %) than animals aged 6-18 months (14.8 %) and 0-6 months (2.6 %). Taking into account that cross-reactivity may occur with other pathogens, the serum samples were also analyzed by ELISA using Histoplasma capsulatum exoantigen as antigen and the positivity observed was 14.3 %. The low correlation (0.267) observed between reactivity to P. brasiliensis gp43 and H. capsulatum exoantigen suggests co-infection rather than cross-reactivity. This is the first report showing serological evidence of P. brasiliensis infection in goats and reinforces that domestic animals are useful epidemiological markers of paracoccidioidomycosis.