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Acta Parasitologica, Vol.46, No. 1, 2001, 39-44
Goldova Maria, Revajova V., Pistl J., Letkova V., Levkut M., Wagshal E., G. Csizsmarova, Looszova A. - Eimeria colchici and immunocompetent cells in specific and non-specific hosts.

University of Veterinary Medicine, Komenskeho 73, 041 81 Kosice, Slovak Republic

We examined time course, pathogenesis, and immune response of the developmental stages of Eimeria colchici in a specific host (pheasant chicks) and a non-specific host (Leghorn chicks). The number of E. colchici schizonts in the Leghorn chick caeca (1.4 ± 1.2) was significantly lower (P<0.005) than those in the pheasant chicks caeca infected with E. colchici (1653.0 ± 663.5) evaluated at a similar time post infection (p.i.). The localisation and comparison of the schizonts' size revealed some differences between the specific and non-specific host. In the non-specific host (Leghorn chicks), schizonts were found in the duodenum, jejunum, ileum and caeca and measured 5.7 x 3.8 mm at 12 h p.i. and 9.5 x 7.6 mm at 36 h p.i., with localisation mainly in the duodenum, whereas at 60 h p.i. the number and size of the schizonts had decreased. In the specific host (pheasant), schizonts were found in the ileum and the caecum and measured 18.7 x 15.1 mm at 24 h p.i. The total number of heterophils was smaller in the Leghorn chicks then in the pheasant chicks, but both revealed a gradual increase along with the development of the infection. Significant increases in leukocytes and CD4 positive T-cells were determined at 60 h p.i.

KEY WORDS: Eimeria colchici, schizont, pheasant, Leghorn chicks, heterophils, immunity, CD markers
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