Seroprevalence of antibodies to Chlamydophila abortus in ovine in the State of Alagoas, Brazil


Brazilian Journal of Microbiology




The goal of this study was to perform a seroepidemiological investigation and to identify risk factors associated with infection of Chlamydophila abortus of sheep herds in the Brazilian state of Alagoas. The study was conducted with samples of 274 ewes with ages equal to or higher than 24 months in 25 herds and in 23 towns located in three regions of the state (Sertão, Agreste and Eastern Alagoas). Anti-C. abortus antibodies were detected using the microcomplement fixation test. The risk factors, were determined based on questionnaires consisting of objective questions, about the farmer and general characteristics of the herd like size, sanitary situation and reproductive management. Among 274 sera samples analyzed for C. abortus, 59 (21.5%) were positive with titers >32, 187 (68.3%) negative and 28 (10.2%) suspect with titers >16. In the 23 towns studied, 20 had positive animals. Among herds 21 (77.7%) of had positive animals. The only variable which appeared to be significant in the multivariate analysis was the region, and Sertão was the most significant (p<0.001; OR=3.48; T.I. 1.79 - 6.76). Results indicate that infection by Chlamydophila abortus is widespread on sheep farms in the State of Alagoas. Others studies, however, have to be conducted to isolate the agent in order to confirm the role of the bacteria is reproductive disturbances in sheeps. In addition to that, control and prophylactic measures along with health promoting programs have to be encouraged on the studied farms so that infection reates are reduced.

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