Distribution and intensity of Echinococcus granulosus infections in dogs in Moroto District, Uganda.
This study was carried out during August 2007-March 2008 in pastoral areas of Moroto District, Uganda. It investigated the distribution and infection intensity of Echinococcus granulosus in the dog population and involved the postmortem examination of 327 dogs (106 domesticated; 80 semi-domesticated, and 141 strays; comprised of 163 females and 164 males). The overall prevalence of E. granulosus was 66.3% (95% CI=60.8-71.4) with parasite burdens of 6-5,213 among the infected dogs. The prevalence of E. granulosus was primarily associated with the season. While the dogs were more likely to have high parasite burdens during the rainy as opposed to the dry season, the parasite burden of E. granulosus infection was also highly associated with age and husbandry. Young dogs were at greater risk of carrying a heavy burden of E. granulosus infection than adults. Likewise, stray dogs were more likely to have a heavy parasite burden. As the study documented a high prevalence and intensity of E. granulosus infection in the dog population in Moroto District of Uganda, further studies need to be carried out in human and intermediate hosts to elucidate the cycle of transmission that could help to design appropriate controlling measures.
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