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See detailSwimmer's Itch in Belgium: First Recorded Outbreaks, Molecular Identification of the Parasite Species and Intermediate Hosts.
Caron, Yannick ULg; Cabaraux, Ariane; Marechal, Francoise et al

in Vector borne and zoonotic diseases (Larchmont, N.Y.) (2017)

BACKGROUND: Cercarial dermatitis or swimmer's itch is a skin condition in humans due to the larval forms of bird schistosomes of some species of the genus Trichobilharzia. The life cycle of these ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Cercarial dermatitis or swimmer's itch is a skin condition in humans due to the larval forms of bird schistosomes of some species of the genus Trichobilharzia. The life cycle of these schistosomes requires freshwater snails (intermediate host) and waterfowl (definitive host). Repeated exposures to cercariae can lead to skin sensitization with the induction of pruritic skin lesions. METHODS: We describe, in this study, two outbreaks of human cercarial dermatitis at the Eau d'Heure Lakes, Belgium. In July and August 2012, a total of, respectively, 78 and 10 people reported a sudden skin rash accompanied by pruritus following recreational activities in the Plate Taille Lake. However, no ocellate furcocercariae were detected following light exposure of the snails collected between September 2012 and September 2013 (n = 402). No outbreaks were recorded in 2013 and 2014. In August 2015, about 30 new cases were recorded. Snails were collected (n = 270) in different locations around the lake. PCR was used to identify accurately the intermediate hosts and the parasite species involved. RESULTS: After light exposure, seven Radix spp. (2.6%) shed ocellate furcocercariae. Molecular identification based on the rDNA internal transcribed spacer 2 sequence ascribed the infected snails to R. balthica ( = R. peregra = R. ovata) (6/7) and R. auricularia (1/7). Based on the amplification of the D2 domain of the 28S rDNA, the cercariae were shown to belong to two different haplotypes of Trichobilharzia franki. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first record in Belgium of T. franki and associated skin condition. [less ▲]

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See detailFifth European Dirofilaria and Angiostrongylus Days (FiEDAD) 2016
Simón, F.; Kartashev, V.; González-Miguel, J. et al

in Parasites & Vectors (2017), 10(1), 5

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See detailSarcoptic mange infection in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Belgium
Volpe, Rosario ULg; Caron, Yannick ULg; Lesenfants, Christophe ULg et al

Poster (2016, August)

Eight cases of sarcoptic mange in foxes were reported during summer 2014 (n=3) and winter 2015 (n= 5) in Belgium. All animals came from the same restricted forest zones near urbanized areas and some of ... [more ▼]

Eight cases of sarcoptic mange in foxes were reported during summer 2014 (n=3) and winter 2015 (n= 5) in Belgium. All animals came from the same restricted forest zones near urbanized areas and some of them were discovered in private gardens (Forest District of Thuin, Hainaut, Belgium). Three of them were found dead, the others were shot for sanitary reasons. At necropsy, all of them presented large areas of alopecia and extensive skin lesions such as hyperkeratosis and suppurative lacerations. Animals presented poor body condition and some of them were severely emaciated (absence of visceral fat). Mange has profound influences on population since, if untreated, death follows in four to six months. In the present cases, cutaneous scrapings and histopathological examinations were systematically performed. Numerous parasites were observed in skin scrapings and marked dermo-epidermatitis with several parasites was observed in histopathological sections. These results suggest an outbreak of sarcoptic mange in red foxes in a limited area of the country. This is a first record for the country. Furthermore, investigations on lungs and digestive tracts performed on 3 of these foxes revealed they were also infected by parasites transmissible to pets and/or humans: Angiostrongylus vasorum was observed in the respiratory tract of one fox whereas Toxocara canis, Uncinaria stenocephala, Taenia spp. and Echinococcus multilocularis worms were detected in the digestive tract. In conclusion, urban foxes represent a source of parasites of public health and veterinary importance and foxes surveillance should be strengthened in these areas. [less ▲]

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See detailPrevalence of Angiostrongylus vasorum in southern Belgium, a coprological and serological survey.
Lempereur, Laetitia ULg; Martinelle, Ludovic ULg; Marechal, Francoise et al

in Parasites & Vectors (2016), 9(1), 533

BACKGROUND: Canine angiostrongylosis, a gastropod-borne helminthic infection, is increasingly being described in North America and is now reported in many European countries. In dogs, Angiostrongylus ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Canine angiostrongylosis, a gastropod-borne helminthic infection, is increasingly being described in North America and is now reported in many European countries. In dogs, Angiostrongylus vasorum may cause a wide spectrum of clinical signs. Respiratory distress such as coughing and dyspnoea are the most frequently described manifestations. The aim of the present study was to gain additional information on the distribution, prevalence and risk factors associated with A. vasorum infection in dog from southern Belgium through the combined used of a commercially available in-clinic assay for detection of circulating antigen (Angio Detect, IDEXX, Westbrook, USA) and coprology in two different canine populations: dogs with clinical signs compatible with angiostrongylosis and asymptomatic dogs or dogs presented for unrelated conditions (control). RESULTS: A total of 979 dogs were enrolled in the study from November 2014 until February 2016. Seven hundred fifty-seven dogs were included in the control group, whereas 222 dogs had clinical signs compatible with angiostrongylosis. Forty-six dogs out of 979 (4.7 %) had A. vasorum circulating antigen. There was a highly significant difference between the two populations (3.6 % (27/747) and 8.6 % (19/222) in control and symptomatic dogs, respectively) (P = 0.00379). First stage larvae (L1) of A. vasorum were found in seven out of 24 serologically positive control dogs and in six out of 17 serologically positive symptomatic dogs. Interestingly, L1 of Crenosoma vulpis were detected by Baermann technique in one control and nine symptomatic dogs, respectively. Out of 17 Angio Detect (IDEXX, Westbrook, USA) positive dogs with negative (14) or not performed Baermann test (three), one dog was positive in both in-house ELISAs (Ag and Ab) and one dog was positive for Ag. Statistical analysis was unable to detect any risk factors associated with the direct and/or indirect detection of A. vasorum. CONCLUSIONS: This seroepidemiological study demonstrated for the first time a high seroprevalence in Southern Belgium for A. vasorum. The Angio Detect was found to be suitable in this context as the collection, preservation and examination of stools were difficult. Nevertheless, discrepancies were observed between the different available tests. Additional research is clearly needed. Also, coproscopy remains a very useful tool in dogs infected for less than nine weeks and for the identification of other canine lung nematodes such as C. vulpis. This study also demonstrates that asymptomatic dogs may shed A. vasorum L1 in their faeces and therefore contribute to the maintenance of A. vasorum life-cycle. [less ▲]

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See detailCurrent status of fasciolosis in Vietnam: an update and perspectives
Bui Thi, Dung ULg; Pham, Ngoc Doanh; Saegerman, Claude ULg et al

in Journal of Helminthology (2015)

Vietnam is recognized as endemic for fasciolosis. However, most of the available publications have not been published in international journals. This review is based on national and international ... [more ▼]

Vietnam is recognized as endemic for fasciolosis. However, most of the available publications have not been published in international journals. This review is based on national and international Vietnamese publications and highlights the current status of fasciolosis in Vietnam. It also provides some information available in neighboring countries. Updated data on responsible species, distribution, transmission and control aspects, are summarized. The Central region of Vietnam is reported as being highly endemic for fasciolosis with a high number of human patients (more than 20.000 in 2011). Fasciola gigantica is reported as the main species in Vietnam. However, hybrids between F. gigantica and F. hepatica were identified. Both human and animals are infected by the ingestion of raw vegetables and possibly contaminated drinking water. Three lymnaeid snail species (Austropeplea viridis, Radix auricularia, Radix rubiginosa) may act as intermediate host of Fasciola spp. However due to the likely misidentification of snail species and cercariae during the previous decade the critical analysis of published data is difficult. A better understanding of transmission aspects of fasciolosis would allow the implementation of preventive measures of this important neglected zoonotic disease. [less ▲]

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See detailCulicoides monitoring in Belgium in 2011: Analysis of spatio-temporal abundance, species diversity and Schmallenberg virus detection.
Losson, Bertrand ULg; De Regge, N; Deblauwe, I et al

in Medical and Veterinary Entomology (2015), 29

In 2011, Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) were collected at 16 locations covering four regions of Belgium with Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute (OVI) traps and at two locations with Rothamsted ... [more ▼]

In 2011, Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) were collected at 16 locations covering four regions of Belgium with Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute (OVI) traps and at two locations with Rothamsted suction traps (RSTs). Quantification of the collections and morphological identification showed important variations in abundance and species diversity between individual collection sites, even for sites located in the same region. However, consistently higher numbers of Culicoides midges were collected at some sites compared with others. When species abundance and diversity were analysed at regional level, between-site variation disappeared. Overall, species belonging to the subgenus Avaritia together with Culicoides pulicaris (subgenus Culicoides) were the most abundant, accounting for 80% and 96% of all midges collected with RSTs and OVI traps, respectively. Culicoides were present during most of the year, with Culicoides obsoletus complex midges found from 9 February until 27 December. Real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction screening for Schmallenberg virus in the heads of collected midges resulted in the first detection of the virus in August 2011 and identified C. obsoletus complex, Culicoides chiopterus and Culicoides dewulfi midges as putative vector species. At Libramont in the south of Belgium, no positive pools were identified. [less ▲]

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See detailNew insight in lymnaeid snails (Mollusca, Gastropoda) as intermediate hosts of Fasciola hepatica (Trematoda, Digenea) in Ecuador
Caron, Yannick ULg; Celi-Erazo, Maritza; Hurtrez-Boussès, Sylvie et al

Conference (2015, August)

Fasciolosis is a widely distributed disease in livestock in South America but knowledge about the epidemiology and the intermediate hosts are scarce in Ecuador. During 3 months, lymnaeid snails were ... [more ▼]

Fasciolosis is a widely distributed disease in livestock in South America but knowledge about the epidemiology and the intermediate hosts are scarce in Ecuador. During 3 months, lymnaeid snails were sampled (n=1482) in Pichincha province in two sites located in a highly endemic area. The snails were identified (based on morphology and ITS2 sequences) and the infection status was established through microscopic dissection and a multiplex PCR-based technique. If morphologic-based techniques were not useful to accurately named the one species collected, alignment study ascribed it to L. schirazensis. Rediae were observed in 1.75 % (26/1482) and Fasciola sp. DNA was detected in 6% (89/1482) of the collected snails. The COX1 region permitted the parasite species identification: F. hepatica. The relative sensitivity and specificity of the microscope related to the PCR results was 25.84% and 99.78% respectively. The mean size of the snails recorded positive for F. hepatica through crushing and microscopy was significantly higher than the mean size of negative snails. There was not such difference in PCR positive snails. The role of G. schirazensis as an intermediate host of F. hepatica in Ecuador is discussed and a hypothesis of an adaptation of the snail to the trematoda is formulated. For the first time, an epidemiological survey, based on molecular biology-based techniques assessed the role of lymnaeid snail in the epidemiology of fasciolosis in Ecuador. [less ▲]

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See detailFirst report of a fatal autochtonous canine Angyostrongylus vasorum infection in Belgium
Jolly, Sandra ULg; Lempereur, Laetitia ULg; Caron, Yannick ULg et al

in Parasitology International (2015), 64(1),

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See detaila retrospective serological survey on human babesiosis in Belgium
Lempereur, Laetitia ULg; Shiels, Brian; Saegerman, Claude ULg et al

in Clinical Microbiology and Infection (2015), 21(1),

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See detailLes porcheries : réservoirs des Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae), vecteurs des virus de la Maladie de la Langue bleue et de Schmallenberg ?
Zimmer, Jean-Yves ULg; Saegerman, Claude ULg; Martinelle, Ludovic ULg et al

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment [=BASE] (2014), 18(4), 480-487

La fièvre catarrhale ovine (FCO) est une arbovirose qui affecte les ruminants domestiques et sauvages. Depuis sa récente apparition en Europe du Nord, cette épizootie virale a engendré des pertes ... [more ▼]

La fièvre catarrhale ovine (FCO) est une arbovirose qui affecte les ruminants domestiques et sauvages. Depuis sa récente apparition en Europe du Nord, cette épizootie virale a engendré des pertes économiques considérables. Les vecteurs biologiques du virus de la FCO sont des moucherons piqueurs appartenant au genre Culicoides (Diptera : Ceratopogonidae). Plusieurs campagnes de piégeage lumineux de ces moucherons adultes ont été réalisées précédemment en Belgique au sein d’exploitations bovines et ovines, mais aucune à l’intérieur des exploitations porcines. Cette étude vise donc à évaluer, au moyen de pièges lumineux, les populations de culicoïdes éventuellement présentes à l’intérieur de deux porcheries belges au cours de l’automne et de l’hiver 2008. La présence des espèces (potentiellement) vectrices du genre Culicoides a ainsi été mise en évidence à l’intérieur de ces bâtiments durant l’automne : 8 et 749 spécimens appartenant à 2 et 7 espèces ont ainsi respectivement été piégés au sein des porcheries, avec une majorité de femelles du complexe Obsoletus. L’ouverture des bâtiments semble fortement influencer leur présence. L’observation du statut alimentaire des femelles laisse supposer que ces moucherons sont susceptibles de se nourrir ou de pondre au sein des porcheries, même si le sang de porc n’a pas pu être identifié dans l’abdomen des femelles gorgées et que le lisier n’a pas révélé la présence de larves. Les porcs pourraient ainsi intervenir dans le maintien des populations d’espèces potentiellement vectrices du virus de la FCO, ou du nouveau virus dénommé virus Schmallenberg. [less ▲]

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See detailPhenotyping Belgian Blue cattle for their susceptibility to psoroptic mange
Abos, Romain ULg; Coussé, Annelies; Sarre, Charlotte et al

Poster (2014, October 17)

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See detailA case of trichurosis in gilts and fattening pigs
Caron, Yannick ULg; Delleur, Valery ULg; Cassart, Dominique ULg et al

in JMM Case Reports (2014)

Trichuris suis, also called whipworm, is a parasite of the caecum and colon distributed widely and considered as a fairly common parasite in swine. It may be responsible for porcine trichurosis ... [more ▼]

Trichuris suis, also called whipworm, is a parasite of the caecum and colon distributed widely and considered as a fairly common parasite in swine. It may be responsible for porcine trichurosis characterized by diarrhoea, anorexia, growth retardation, dehydration, emaciation and anaemia. This report presents a case of trichurosis diagnosed in a farrow-to-finish Belgian pig herd. The infection was associated with severe and persistent diarrhoea, growth retardation, emaciation and/or anaemia in 10 recently purchased gilts and in fattening pigs. In gilts, levamisole [8 mg/kg body weight] administered once per os gave a good clinical response, as diarrhoea resolved in nine gilts out of 10. In parallel, for these nine gilts, the number of eggs of T. suis/g faeces passed decreased from 12 400 to less than 100 eggs. In fattening pigs, flubendazole (1 mg/kg BW) administrated over 5 days in drinking water allowed a reduction in the number of T. suis eggs/g and was effective against diarrhoea. Although most of the time pig whipworm infections are light and asymptomatic, in some cases when large numbers of worms are present, they can cause watery to bloody diarrhoea that can lead to anaemia. This less frequent disease should not be forgotten in the differential diagnosis of persistent diarrhoea in growing pigs. [less ▲]

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See detailDetection of Angiostrongylus vasorum in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid or faeces of coughing and healthy dogs in Belgium.
Canonne-Guibert, Morgane ULg; Roels, Elodie ULg; Caron, Yannick ULg et al

in Proceedings of the 24th Ecvim Meeting, Mainz, Germany - 4-6 September 2014 (2014, September)

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See detailParasites of domestic owned cats in Europe: co-infestations and risk factors.
Beugnet, Frederic; Bourdeau, Patrick; Chalvet-Monfray, Karine et al

in Parasites & Vectors (2014), 7

BACKGROUND: Domestic cats can be infested by a large range of parasite species. Parasitic infestations may cause very different clinical signs. Endoparasites and ectoparasites are rarely explored in the ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Domestic cats can be infested by a large range of parasite species. Parasitic infestations may cause very different clinical signs. Endoparasites and ectoparasites are rarely explored in the same study and therefore multiparasitism is poorly documented. The present survey aimed to improve knowledge of the prevalence and risk factors associated with ecto- and endoparasite infestations in owned cats in Europe. METHODS: From March 2012 to May 2013, 1519 owned cats were included in a multicenter study conducted in 9 veterinary faculties throughout Europe (Austria, Belgium, France, Hungary, Italy, Romania and Spain). For each cat, ectoparasites were checked by combing of the coat surface associated with otoscopic evaluation and microscopy on cerumen samples. Endoparasites were identified by standard coproscopical examinations performed on fresh faecal samples. Risk factors and their influence on parasitism were evaluated by univariate analysis followed by a multivariate statistical analysis (including center of examination, age, outdoor access, multipet status, and frequency of treatments as main criteria) with logistic regression models. RESULTS: Overall, 50.7% of cats resulted positive for at least one internal or one external parasite species. Ectoparasites were found in 29.6% of cats (CI95 27.3-32.0%). Otodectes cynotis was the most frequently identified species (17.4%), followed by fleas (15.5%). Endoparasites were identified in 35.1% of the cats (CI95 32.7-35.7%), including gastro-intestinal helminths in 25.7% (CI95 23.5-28.0), respiratory nematodes in 5.5% (CI95 4.2-7.0%) and protozoans in 13.5% (CI95 11.8-15.3%). Toxocara cati was the most commonly diagnosed endoparasite (19.7%, CI95 17.8-21.8%). Co-infestation with endoparasites and ectoparasites was found in 14.0% of the cats, and 11.9% harbored both ectoparasites and gastro-intestinal helminths.Age, outdoor access, living with other pets, and anthelmintic or insecticide treatments were significantly associated with the prevalence of various parasites. CONCLUSIONS: This survey demonstrates that parasitism is not a rare event in European owned cat populations. The prevalence of multi-parasitism is significantly greater than expected by chance and hence there is tendency for some individual cats to be more prone to infestation by both endo- and ectoparasites due to common risk factors. [less ▲]

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See detailComparison of different serological methods to detect antibodies to Neospora caninum in bovine and canine sera
Ghalmi; China, B; Jenkins, M et al

in Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation (2014), 26

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See detailBluetongue, Schmallenberg - what is next? Culicoides-borne viral diseases in the 21st Century
Koenraadt, CJM; Balenghien, T; Carpenter, S et al

in BMC Veterinary Research (2014), 10

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See detailComparison of different serological methods to detect antibodies specific to Neospora caninum in bovine and canine sera
Ghalmi, F; China, B; Jenkins, M et al

in Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation (2014), 26(1), 136-140

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