Journal article

Comparison of the modified agglutination test and real-time PCR for detection of Toxoplasma gondii exposure in feral cats from Phillip Island, Australia, and risk factors associated with infection

Katherine Adriaanse, Simon M Firestone, Michael Lynch, Anthony R Rendall, Duncan R Sutherland, Jasmin Hufschmid, Rebecca Traub

International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife | ELSEVIER | Published : 2020


Toxoplasma gondii is considered a disease risk for many native Australian species. Feral cats are the key definitive host of T. gondii in Australia and therefore, investigating the epidemiology of T. gondii in cat populations is essential to understanding the risk posed to wildlife. Test sensitivity and specificity are poorly defined for diagnostic tests targeting T. gondii in cats and there is a need for validated techniques. This study focused on the feral cat population on Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia. We compared a novel real-time PCR (qPCR) protocol to the modified agglutination test (MAT) and used a Bayesian latent class modelling approach to assess the diagnostic parameters of ..

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Awarded by Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Award

Funding Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge the staff of Phillip Island Nature Parks, in particular Stuart Murphy and Frank Gigliotti, for their assistance in collection of feral cat cadavers, without which this research would not have been possible. The authors would also like to thank Dinh Ngoc Nguyen for his invaluable assistance and advice on qPCR optimisation and Bayesian latent class modelling. This work was funded by Zoos Victoria and Phillip Island Nature Parks. Simon Firestone is supported by an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Award (DE160100477).