Parasitology research

Efficacy of toltrazuril 5 % suspension against Eimeria bovis and Eimeria zuernii in calves and observations on the associated immunopathology.

PMID 21739381


16 Calves were each infected with suspensions containing a mixture of approximately 230,000 Eimeria bovis and 70,000 E. zuernii oocysts, which resulted in detection of oocysts in faeces of 12 of 16 calves by day +14 after infection. On day +14 after infection calves were either treated (n = 8) with toltrazuril at 15 mg/kg body weight or with a placebo. Observations were made on the clinical condition, faecal score and liveweight of calves daily from one day post infection (pi) until 24 days pi when all calves were euthanised and examined post mortem. Samples were collected from ileum and colon for histological, immunohistochemical and gene expression studies. The study demonstrated an efficacy of toltrazuril for the treatment of E. bovis and E. zuernii infections in calves reaching 99 % (based on arithmetic mean oocyst counts in faeces) within three days of treatment and remaining at or above this level for six days. Toltrazuril did not have a significant effect on the pattern and extent of immune cellular infiltration in the mucosa of ileum and colon, but the expression of the genes coding IL-2, IL-10 and TNF-α in the ileum and TNF-α in the colon were elevated in calves treated with toltrazuril. Higher levels of oocyst shedding were significantly associated with lower expression of genes coding for IL-2, IL-10 and higher IP-10. It is concluded that toltrazuril is effective for the treatment of coccidiosis due to E. bovis and E. zuernii in calves and enables the development of a normal or enhanced immune response to infection.

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Toltrazuril, VETRANAL®, analytical standard