Toxoplasma gondii perhaps the most successful parasite in the world today. This microscopic organism is capable of infecting any mammal or bird, and people on all continents are infected. Once infected, a person carries Toxoplasma for life. Until now, we still do not have a drug that can eradicate parasites from the body. And there is no vaccine approved for human use.
Worldwide, estimated 30–50% of people infected Toxoplasma – and infections may be on the rise in Australia. Survey of studies conducted at blood banks and antenatal clinics across the country in the 1970s bringing the infection rate to 30%. However, a recent Western Australia community-based research detected 66% of infected people.
The disease caused by this parasite can leave scars at the back of the eye. Our new research look for signs of disease in otherwise healthy individuals and notice a significant number bearing signs of Toxoplasma.
We don’t just get it from cats
The cat is the main host of Toxoplasma.
Cats catch parasites when they eat infected prey. Then, within a few weeks, they transmit large numbers of parasites in their feces so that they can persist in the environment for a long time, even in inclement weather.
When cattle ingest manure while grazing, the parasites reside in the muscle and stay there after the animal is slaughtered. Humans can become infected by eating this meat, or by eating raw food or drinking water contaminated by cats. A woman infected for the first time during pregnancy can also pass the infection on to her unborn baby.
During infection with Toxoplasma While extremely common, the most important health statistic is the incidence of an infection, known as toxoplasmosis.
How it affects the eyes
Toxoplasma really like retina, the multi-layered nerve tissue that outlines the eye and produces vision. Infection can cause recurrent episodes of retinitis and permanent retinal scarring. This is called toxoplasmosis of the eye.
Contrary to much is written about ocular toxoplasmosis, medical research shows that the condition often affect healthy adults. However, in older adults or those with weakened immune systems, or when infected during pregnancy, the disease can be more severe.
The onslaught of active inflammation causes “bloat” and blurred vision. As the inflammation progresses to scarring, permanent vision loss is possible.
In one learn Of patients with ocular toxoplasmosis examined at a major ophthalmology clinic, we measured more than 50% of the eyes to have reduced visual acuity below driving range, and 25% of the eyes to be irreversibly blind.
How many eyes are there?
Optometrists and optometrists are quite familiar with the management of ocular toxoplasmosis. But the extent of the problem is not widely recognized, even in the medical community. Until now, the number of Australians with ocular toxoplasmosis had never been measured.
We wanted to investigate the prevalence of ocular toxoplasmosis in Australia, but we knew it would be difficult to obtain funding for a large survey of this neglected disease. So we used the information we gathered for another purpose: as part of the Busselton Healthy Aging Study, retinal photographs were taken from more than 5,000 baby boomers (born 1946–20). 64) lives in Busselton, Western Australia. Pictures has been gathered to look for other eye diseases, macular degeneration, and glaucoma.
By sifting through these retinal images, we estimates The prevalence of ocular toxoplasmosis is 1 in 150 Australians. This seems surprisingly common, but it fits the way people take it Toxoplasma.
In addition to pet cats, Australia also has a large number of wild cat. And Australia is home to a lot of farmland, covering more than 50% of the land global organic farming region.
Most importantly, many Australians love to eat rare red meatputting them at real risk.
How is the condition treated?
To diagnose toxoplasmosis of the eye, the retina should be examined, ideally when the pupils are dilated.
Retinal lesions are easy to detect, due to the way Toxoplasma Activate retinal cells to make certain proteins, and its presence can be immediately recognized by an ophthalmologist or optometrist. Often blood tests are also done to make the diagnosis.
If the condition is mild, the doctor may let the body’s immune system take care of the problem on its own, which can take several months. However, usually, common, normal A combination of anti-inflammatory and anti-parasitic drugs is prescribed.
Toxoplasma The infection cannot be cured, but it can be prevented. Meat sold in Australian supermarkets can contain Toxoplasma. Cook meat to internal temperature 66 or freezing it before cooking are ways to kill parasites.
Fresh fruits and vegetables should be washed before eating, and untreated water should be avoided (such as water that flows directly from a river or creek). Gloves should be worn when changing cat poop and washing hands afterwards.
The World Health Organization and other international and national health agencies are promoting an approach known as One health for diseases transmitted by humans, animals and their environment. This involves different areas working together to promote good health. Now that we know how common ocular toxoplasmosis is in Australia, there’s a real reason to use One Health to combat it. Toxoplasma infection in this country.
This article was originally published at Conversation. See Original article here.
https://www.livescience.com/toxoplasma-parasite-human-eyes Parasite that controls cat minds may infect billions of people. The clue is in their eyes.