Taenia solium metacestode preparation in rural areas of sub-Saharan Africa: a source for diagnosis and research on cysticercosis

Article Authors: Schmidt V1, Sikasunge CS2, Odongo-Aginya E3, Simukoko C2, Mwanjali G5, Alarakol S4, Ovuga E4, Matuja W6, Kihamia C5, Löscher T1, Winkler AS7, Bretzel G1


Background: Taenia solium metacestodes/cysts obtained from pig carcasses constitute a primary source for diagnostic
tools used for the detection of human cysticercosis. Data on T. solium cyst preparation in Africa is still scarce but required
to establish independent reference laboratories.
Objectives: The aim of the present study is a) to present the likely yield of T. solium cyst material by the use of two different
preparation methods in the field and b) to investigate its suitability for immunodiagnosis of human cysticercosis.
Methods: In Zambia, Uganda and Tanzania 670 pigs were screened for T. solium infection. Cysts were prepared by `shaking
method´ and ‘washing method’. Generated crude antigens were applied in a standard western blot assay.
Results: 46 out of 670 pigs (6.9%) were found positive for T. solium (Zambia: 12/367, 3.3%; Uganda: 11/217, 5.1%; Tanzania
23/86, 26.7%). Mean values of 77.7 ml whole cysts, 61.8 ml scolices/membranes and 10.9 ml cyst fluid were obtained
per pig. Suitability of collected material for the use as crude antigen and molecular diagnostic techniques was demonstrated.
Conclusion: This study clearly shows that T. solium cyst preparation in African settings by simple field methods constitutes
an effective way to obtain high-quality material as source for diagnostic tools and research purposes.

Bibliographical metadata

Journal African Health Sciences
Volume 15
Issue No. 1
Pages 58-67
DOI 10.4314/ahs.v15i1.8
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