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Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Chang C.-C.,National Chung Hsing University | Lin P.-S.,National Cheng Kung University | Hung M.-N.,The Fifth Branch | Wu T.-M.,Kaohsiung Municipal Institute for Animal Health | And 4 more authors.
Zoonoses and Public Health | Year: 2010

The first case of Q fever in Taiwan was reported in 1993. The disease is considered to be emerging in Taiwan, but the route of transmission has remained unclear. The annual number of confirmed Q fever cases has been increasing up to more than 100 cases since 2005, comparing with less than 30 before 2003. The purpose of this study was to determine the seroprevalence and risk factors of Coxiella burnetii infection in veterinary-associated populations in southern Taiwan. A total of 228 serum samples of high risk individuals engaging in veterinary-related work or animal-farm work, were collected between March and June in 2007. The study individuals were interviewed by a structured questionnaire designed for Q fever investigation. Serum samples from different animal species were also obtained for Q fever analysis in the same study areas. Serological test was conducted by indirect immunofluorescence antibody assay (IFA). The result demonstrated the overall seroprevalence of Q fever was 26.3% in individuals engaging in veterinary and animal-related work in southern Taiwan. After multiple logistic regression analysis, goat exposure was significantly associated with seropositivity of Q fever in the study population in southern Taiwan (adjusted odds ratio: 2.62; 95% CI: 1.06-6.46). In addition, the highest seroprevalence (43.8%) of Q fever was identified in goats (P < 0.05). Finally, this study documented that people with prior knowledge of Q fever were less likely to be seropositive for C. burnetii. It was concluded that goat exposure was the most important risk factor associated with C. burnetii infection and appropriate health education could be useful to prevent high risk individuals from the infection in southern Taiwan. © 2009 Blackwell Verlag GmbH. Source

Hou M.-Y.,Health Diagnostic Laboratory | Hung M.-N.,The Fifth Branch | Lin P.-S.,Health Diagnostic Laboratory | Wang Y.-C.,Health Diagnostic Laboratory | And 5 more authors.
Japanese Journal of Infectious Diseases | Year: 2011

We have developed a single-tube nested real-time PCR (STN-RT PCR) assay using the repetitive, transposon-like element IS1111 as the DNA target to facilitate early diagnosis of acute Q fever. The use of our proposed diagnostic procedures, including IgM detection by serology and the STN-RT PCR assay, significantly increased the diagnostic sensitivity for Q fever to 78%, compared to 29% when serology alone was used for subjects providing mainly acute-phase blood samples. Source

Hung M.-N.,The Fifth Branch | Chou Y.-F.,The Fifth Branch | Chen M.-J.,The Fifth Branch | Hou M.-Y.,Health Diagnostic Laboratory | And 3 more authors.
Japanese Journal of Infectious Diseases | Year: 2010

Q fever is a worldwide zoonosis caused by the obligate intracellular bacterium Coxiella burnetii. Its most common reservoirs are domesticated ruminants, primarily cattle, sheep, and goats. Although less frequent, distribution of Q fever in wild mammals, including coyotes, rabbits, foxes, skunks, and deer, has also been reported (1,2). Q fever outbreaks in humans are typically due to inhaling infectious aerosols and contaminated dusts generated by animals or animal products. In contrast, ingestion (mainly drinking un-pasteurized milk) is probably a minor cause of Q fever outbreaks (3). Source

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