Toxocara canis infection is associated with eosinophilia and total IgE in blood donors from a large Brazilian centre.

Research paper by V C C VC Dattoli, S M SM Freire, L R LR Mendonça, P C PC Santos, R R Meyer, N M NM Alcantara-Neves

Indexed on: 18 Mar '11Published on: 18 Mar '11Published in: Tropical Medicine & International Health


To investigate the association between Toxocara canis infection and total IgE levels and eosinophilia in blood donors from a large Brazilian city.Two hundred and sixty-eight blood donors from a government blood bank were tested. No helminth infection was diagnosed by parasitological stool examination. Total IgE levels and T. canis infection status were determined by ELISA. Eosinophil levels were determined using an automatic blood cell counter.Toxocara canis IgG antibodies were found in 124 (46.3%); 102 (38.0%) had eosinophilia ≥4% and 29 (10.8%) had eosinophilia ≥10%, respectively; 140 (52.2%) individuals had total IgE antibodies above the cut-off levels. Both total IgE and eosinophil levels ≥10% were positively associated with the infection.This study revealed a high prevalence of T. canis infection in blood donors, highlighting the need for screening for this infection. It also demonstrated that this population otherwise healthy has higher levels of blood eosinophils and total IgE and that both parameters are associated with T. canis infection.