Prospective Serosurvey of Coxiella burnetii Antibodies in Selected Sheep of Portugal
Q fever is a zoonotic disease caused by Coxiella burnetii that is highly prevalent across the world. In this study, a prospective serosurvey was performed to study C. burnetii circulation in a population of sheep in the central region of Portugal. Blood from a representative sample of 168 animals was drawn in both 2015 and 2016, and sera were tested for IgG anti-C. burnetii by EIA. In 2015, 7.7% (13/168) animals tested positive for IgG anti-C. burnetii, while in 2016, 17.3% (29/168) tested positive, showing a statistically significant (P = 0.008) increase in anti-C. burnetii seroprevalence. Results support the notion that Q fever is emerging in central Portugal.
KeywordsQ fever Coxiella burnetii Portugal Emergence
This work is financed by national funds through FCT—Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia, I.P., under the project UID/Multi/04016/2016 and FCT Bilateral project (Proc° 441.00 SERVIA). Furthermore, we would like to thank the Instituto Politécnico de Viseu, CI&DETS, for their support and FCT, FCOMP-01-0124-FEDER-009525; IPV, CI&DETS, FCT and QREN/FEDER (Ovislab ICT-2013-05-004-5314 ID-64757; rumDISEASE PROJ/CI&DETS/2016/0023, SBMERGE PROJ/CI&DETS/CGD/009 and HEALTHY-ValorWhey PROJ/CI&DETS/CGD/007). This work is supported by European Investment Funds by FEDER/COMPETE/POCI—Operacional Competitiveness and Internacionalization Programme, under Project POCI-01-0145-FEDER-006958, and National Funds by FCT—Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology, under the project UID/AGR/04033/2013. Furthermore, we would like to thank UTAD and CITAB for their support.
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Conflict of interest