Monitoring of parasitic cysts in the brains of a flock of sheep in Egypt.Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 2013 Jul-Sep; 22(3):323-30RB
Cerebral parasitic cysts constitute a major problem for livestock. Among these, coenurosis and toxoplasmosis are predominant. Here, a total number of 60 sheep obtained from a private farm in Suez province, Egypt, were examined postmortem to detect visible parasitic cysts, and microscopically to detect small-sized entities. Necropsy revealed bladder-like cysts measuring 0.5-6.5 cm in diameter that were filled with a translucent fluid containing a large number of protoscolices. Accordingly, the cysts were identified as the metacestode Coenurus cerebralis. Among the sheep examined, 11 animals (7 males and 4 females) (18.3%) were infected. Most of the cysts were located in the cerebral hemispheres, with numbers ranging from one to three per infected animal. The effect of the presence of cysts in the brain tissue was evaluated. Histopathologically, pseudocysts of the apicomplexan Toxoplasma gondii were found in two animals with no detectable inflammatory cell reactions. In conclusion, coenurosis and toxoplasmosis are serious parasitic problems that play a significant role in sheep management in Egypt, as a result of close contact between livestock and dogs and cats, which play a critical role in the life cycle of these parasites.