Pesquisa Veterinária Brasileira
Print version ISSN 0100-736X
MEDEIROS, João M.A et al. Paratuberculosis in goats and sheep in the state of Paraiba. Pesq. Vet. Bras. [online]. 2012, vol.32, n.2, pp. 111-115. ISSN 0100-736X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-736X2012000200003.
Antibodies to paratuberculosis were determined by ELISA in serum samples of 734 goats and 392 sheep, without clinical signs, from 14 municipalities of the semiarid region of Paraíba state, Brazil. In goats, average frequency of antibodies was 44.86±22.91% and in sheep was 52.96±31.49%. All municipalities had affected animals with a frequency varying from 20% to 70%. In goats of unknown breed and crossbreds the prevalence (48.56%) was significantly lower (P=0.0270) than in pure breed goats (57.24%). In sheep with body scores of 1 to 3, the frequency (59.39%) was significantly higher (P=0.0034) than in sheep with body score from 3 to 5 (42.42%). No significant differences were observed in goats and sheep of different ages, in goats with different body score, and in sheep of different breeds. In the microbiologic examination, after 16 weeks of incubation in HEYM medium with mycobactin J, colonies similar to those of do Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuber culosis were observed in cultures of 9 (6.58%) out of 180 fecal samples, being one from goats and 8 from sheep. In the Ziehl Nieelsen the bacteria had morphologic and staining characteristics similar to M. avium subsp. paratuberculosis. These results suggest that paratuberculosis is endemic with high prevalence in the semiarid region of Paraíba. It is necessary to develop research on the epidemiology and control measures of the disease in the conditions of this region. Also the risk for human beings should be determined, mainly in relation with milking goats.
Keywords : ELISA; Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis; paratuberculosis; small ruminants.