Article first published online: 3 APR 2007
Journal of Food Safety
Volume 12, Issue 1, pages 17–57, April 1991
How to Cite
SMITH, J. L. (1991), FOODBORNE TOXOPLASMOSIS. Journal of Food Safety, 12: 17–57. doi: 10.1111/j.1745-4565.1991.tb00063.x
- Issue published online: 3 APR 2007
- Article first published online: 3 APR 2007
- Accepted for Publication April 21, 1991.
Toxoplasmosis, a disease of mammals and birds, is caused by the obligate intracellular protozoan parasite, Toxoplasma gondii. It is believed that approximately half of the human population of the U.S. is infected and that 500 million of the world population demonstrate a positive serological reaction to the parasite. Only a small percentage of the infected individuals show symptoms: however, in immunocompromised persons, the disease can be quite severe and even fatal. The infectious agent is generally foodborne and is due to the ingestion of raw or undercooked meats derived from infected animals. In this review, several aspects of the T. gondii organism, including its survival, its distribution in the environment and animals, its presence and survival in foods, role of virulence factors, and its transmission to humans, are reviewed. In addition, human toxoplasmosis, its treatment and prevention, and the economic aspects of the disease are discussed.