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Epidemiological survey on cystic echinococcosis in wild boar from Central Italy

Paoletti, Barbara, Della Salda, Leonardo, Di Cesare, Angela, Iorio, Raffaella, Vergara, Alberto, Fava, Camilla, Olivastri, Alberto, Dessì, Giorgia, Scala, Antonio, Varcasia, Antonio
Parasitology research 2019 v.118 no.1 pp. 43-46
Echinococcus granulosus, NADH dehydrogenase, Taenia hydatigena, adults, case studies, cytochrome-c oxidase, echinococcosis, economic impact, epidemiological studies, genotype, hydatids, mitochondrial genes, mixed infection, public health, urban areas, wild boars, Italy
Despite the wide distribution of wild boar populations in Italy and the increase of its diffusion in urbanized areas, only one case report has described the occurrence of Echinococcus granulosus s.l. in a wild boar from Marche (Central Italy). The present study investigated the presence of E. granulosus sensu lato with an epidemiological survey on wild boars from central Italy that had been killed during hunting season. Seven hundred sixty-five (765) adult wild boars were examined during the 2016–2017 hunting season. Of these animals, 1.0% (8/765) were positive to E. granulosus s.l. with a fertility of 0.3% (2/765), and 2.9% animals (22/765) were positive for the metacestode stage of Taenia hydatigena (Cysticercus tenuicollis), while 0.5% (4/765) showed mixed infection (E. granulosus s.l. + T. hydatigena). Sixteen hydatids were found, of which 12.5% were fertile, 37.5% were sterile, 31.3% were caseous, and 18.8% were calcified. Eight hydatids (two fertile and six sterile cysts) were molecularly characterized by analysis of the mitochondrial gene, cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (cox1), and the NADH dehydrogenase subunit 1 (ND1). Hydatids found in wild boars were characterized as E. granulosus sensu stricto (G1 genotype). The present survey represents the first epidemiological study on cystic echinococcosis in wild boar in Italy which highlights the need for more extensive epidemiological investigations to determine the causal factors, economic impact, and public health importance of the disease in this livestock-wildlife setting.