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Dynamics of individual exposure to Coxiella burnetii infection in a Q fever endemic red deer (Cervus elaphus) farm

AuthorsGonzález-Barrio, David ; Queirós, João ; Fernández de Mera, Isabel G.; Ruiz Fons, Francisco
Issue Date2014
CitationTTP8 & STVM12 (2014)
Abstract[Objectives]: Infection dynamics of Coxiella burnetii in Q fever endemic herds in the long-time scale may be influenced by a trade-off balance between infection pressure and herd immunity, among other factors. Variations in the rate of susceptible-to-immune individuals in the herd with time may drive shedding patterns, and therefore infection pressure and transmission rates. Analysing factors driving C. burnetii dynamics in endemic herds will help understanding host-C. burnetii interaction traits to improve Q fever control schemes. [Method]: From 2008 to 2013, 217 red deer from a Q fever endemic farm were followed at least twice a year since 7 up to 62 months of life for quantification of C. burnetii antibodies (ELISACOXLS, ThermoFisher Scientific, USA). Average sample-to-positive control ratio (a proxy for antibody levels) increased with animal age - from 16.9±24.0 for 7 month-old to 108.1±37.1 for 62 month-old individuals. Increasing seroprevalence from winter to summer constituted the general annual pattern. Most individuals (95.8%) alternated seropositive with seronegative periods during the study; very few (4.2%) remained seropositive or seronegative in at least eight consecutive samplings from 7 months of age. [Conclusions]: The humoral immune response to C. burnetii infection in red deer is affected by age, which may be related both to increasing immune capacity and to cumulative effects. The observed annual seroprevalence pattern suggests that C. burnetii in deer is shed - and transmitted - mainly around the calving season (late spring). The short average duration of C. burnetii antibodies suggests that early vaccination approaches to control Q fever in red deer should be applied during winter months, when antibody levels are expected to lower.
DescriptionResumen del póster presentado al Joint 8th International Ticks and Tick-borne Pathogens and 12th Biennial Society for Tropical Veterinary Medicine Conference, celebradas en Cape Town (Sudafrica) del 24 al 29 de agosto de 2014.
Appears in Collections:(IREC) Comunicaciones congresos
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