Toxoplasma gondii are intracellular protozoa that can cause neurological disease or death in fetuses and even in immunocompromised human adults. Ticks are recognized as vectors of many microorganisms including viruses, bacteria, and protozoa. Recent studies detected T. gondii in various tick species in many countries. In this study, we performed PCR detection of the T. gondii B1 gene from Haemaphysalis ticks collected from vegetation in 4 localities, Wonju, Gunsan, Miryang, and Yangsan, in Korea. We analyzed DNA from 314 ticks (268 Haemaphysalis longicornis and 46 Haemaphysalis flava) and the B1 gene of T. gondii was detected in 13 of these. The detection of T. gondii in ticks differed significantly by region (P = 0.021). T. gondii was detected in the following percentages of collected ticks: 3.7% (7 of 189) in Gunsan, 10% (5 of 50) in Wonju, 16.7% (1 of 6) in Yangsan, and 0% (0 of 69) in Miryang. The detection of T. gondii in ticks was not associated with tick species or development stage. This is the first report of T. gondii detection in ticks in Korea. Our results provide important information necessary to understand toxoplasmosis transmission.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean Government (Ministry of Education, Science and Technology; grant no. 2019R1A2B5B01069843).
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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Infectious Diseases