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Open Access Laboratory Diagnosis of Trypanosoma cruzi Infection in a Colony-Raised Pigtailed Macaque

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An adult (57 months), male, pigtailed macaque (Macaca nemestrina) was screened for an AIDS-related research project and found to be positive on a B-cell lymphocyte culture for trypanosomes. Characterization of the trypanosome was done by using hemocultures, serology, and molecular techniques. Nucleic-acid amplification and sequencing of the nuclear repetitive sequence, kinetoplast DNA, and a fragment of the small subunit RNA gene confirmed that the trypanosome isolated was Trypanosoma cruzi and not T. rangeli, the only other trypanosome known to infect mammals in the New World. This represents the first naturally occurring case of Chagas' disease (American trypanosomiasis) in M. nemestrina, an Old World macaque, and may present an opportunity for development of an animal model of this human disease. The presence of under-recognized but enzootic T. cruzi infection in colony-raised M. nemestrina may have a significant impact on research programs, mandating effective screening of high-risk animals prior to protocol assignment.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: University of Washington, National Primate Research Center (WaNPRC), H.S.B. I-421, Box 357330, Seattle, Washington 98195 2: Laboratory Medicine, UWMC, 1959 NE Pacific Street, Seattle, Washington 98195 3: Laboratory Medicine & Microbiology, NW-120 UWMC, 1959 NE Pacific Street, Seattle, Washington 98195

Publication date: 01 July 2002

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  • The Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (JAALAS) serves as an official communication vehicle for the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS). The journal includes a section of refereed articles and a section of AALAS association news. The mission of the refereed section of the journal is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information on animal biology, technology, facility operations, management, and compliance as relevant to the AALAS membership. JAALAS accepts research reports (data-based) or scholarly reports (literature-based), with the caveat that all articles, including solicited manuscripts, must include appropriate references and must undergo peer review.

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