Material & Volume
EDTA blood or amniotic fluid or chorionic villus sample
Toxoplasma gondii is a parasitic protozoan that causes toxoplasmosis. The pathogen can infect all warm-blooded animals with felids being the only known definitive hosts in which the parasite may undergo sexual reproduction.
An infection with T. gondii in immunocompetent persons is generally asymptomatic or causes just mild flu-like symptoms.
Immunocompromised people and/or young children are likely to experience headache, confusion, poor coordination, seizures, tuberculosis-like lung infection, or chorioretinitis caused by severe inflammation of the retina (ocular toxoplasmosis). In some cases severe toxoplasmosis may develop which can even lead to encephalitis.
To prevent infection with T. gondii the following should be avoided: consuming raw or undercooked meat (could contain T. gondii tissue cysts, especially pork meat), ingesting products which could be contaminated with feces of infected animals (water, soil, vegetables, etc.), cat fecal matter, drinking unpasteurized milk.