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PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2010 Feb 2;4(2):e594. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0000594.

Prevalence and risk factors of porcine cysticercosis in Angónia District, Mozambique.

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Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Eduardo Mondlane University, Maputo, Mozambique.


Taenia solium is an important zoonosis in many developing countries. Cysticercosis poses a serious public health risk and incurs sizeable economic losses to pig production. Because data on the epidemiology of porcine cysticercosis in Mozambique are scarce, the present study was conducted to determine the prevalence and risk factors for porcine cysticercosis. A cross-sectional survey was carried out in 11 villages in Angónia district, Tete province in northwestern Mozambique. Between September and November, 2007, a total of 661 pigs were tested serologically and examined by tongue inspection. Serum samples were tested for the presence of circulating parasite antigen using a monoclonal antibody-based sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (Ag-ELISA). In addition, a questionnaire survey to collect information on pig production, occurrence and transmission of porcine cysticercosis, risk factors and awareness of porcine cysticercosis was conducted in the selected households from which pigs were sampled. Two hundred thirty-one samples (34.9%) were found positive by the Ag-ELISA, while by tongue inspection on the same animals cysticerci were detected in 84 pigs (12.7%). Increasing age (OR = 1.63; 95% CI = 1.13-2.37) and free-range pig husbandry system (OR = 3.81; 95% CI = 2.08-7.06) were important risk factors for porcine cysticercosis in the district. The present findings indicate that porcine cysticercosis is endemic in the region, and that increasing pig age and pig husbandry practices contribute significantly to porcine cysticercosis transmission. Further epidemiological studies on the prevalence and transmission of porcine cysticercosis in rural communities in Mozambique are needed to enable collection of more baseline data and implementation of effective control strategies within the country.

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