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J Parasitol. 1990 Apr;76(2):201-4.

Effect of high temperature on infectivity of Toxoplasma gondii tissue cysts in pork.

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  • 1Zoonotic Diseases Laboratory, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Beltsville, Maryland 20705.


To study the effect of high temperature on infectivity of Toxoplasma gondii tissue cysts, pork from infected pigs was mixed with infected mouse brains and homogenized thoroughly. Twenty-gram samples of infected homogenized meat were sealed in plastic pouches, pressed to a uniform thickness of 2 mm, and subjected to water-bath temperatures of 49, 52, 55, 58, 61, 64, and 67 C for 0.01, 3, 6, 9, 12, 24, 48, and 96 min. Treated samples were digested in HCl-pepsin solution and bioassayed in mice. Toxoplasma gondii tissue cysts remained viable at 52 C for 9.5 min but not for 9.5 min at 58 C; tissue cysts were generally rendered nonviable by heating to 61 C or higher temperature for 3.6 min. Tissue cysts survived once at 64 C for 3 min. These data demonstrate that T. gondii tissue cysts are less heat resistant than encysted Trichinella spiralis larvae.

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