Human toxoplasmosis in Mozambique: gaps in knowledge and research opportunities

Leonardo Manuel, Gabriela Santos-Gomes, Emilia V. Noormahomed

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic zoonotic disease caused by Toxoplasma gondii that afflicts humans worldwide and wild and domestic warm-blooded animals. In immunocompetent individuals, the acute phase of infection presents transient low or mild symptoms that remain unnoticed. In immunocompromised patients, T. gondii is a life-threatening opportunistic infection, which can result from the reactivation of latent infection or primary infection. Moreover, congenital toxoplasmosis, which results from the transplacental passage of tachyzoites into the fetus during a pregnant primary infection, can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, or ocular and neurologic disease, and neurocognitive deficits in the newborns. Thus, the present review aims to address the current knowledge of T. gondii infection and toxoplasmosis in Africa and especially in Mozambique, stressing the importance of identifying risk factors and promote awareness among the health care providers and population, assessing the gaps in knowledge and define research priorities. In Mozambique, and in general in southern African countries, clinical disease and epidemiological data have not yet been entirely addressed in addition to the implications of T. gondii infection in immunocompetent individuals, in pregnant women, and its relation with neuropsychiatric disorders. The main gaps in knowledge in Mozambique include lack of awareness of the disease, lack of diagnostic methods in health facilities, lack of genetic data, and lack of control strategies.[Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Article number571
Pages (from-to)571-581
Number of pages10
JournalParasites and Vectors
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Dec 2020

Keywords

  • Congenital toxoplasmosis
  • HIV-infected patients
  • Mental disorders
  • Mozambique
  • Ocular toxoplasmosis
  • South east African countries
  • Toxosplasma gondii infection

UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-Being

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