Advances in Animal and Veterinary Sciences

Review Article
Adv. Anim. Vet. Sci. 2 (3S): 49 - 54. Special Issue-3 (Approaches in Diagnosis and Management of Diseases of Livestock and Poultry)
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Souvik Paul1*, Dinesh Kumar Sharma1, Rupa Boral2, Anil Kumar Mishra1, Shivasharanappa Nayakwadi1, Partha Sarathi Banerjee3, Rajveer Singh Pawaiya1
1Division of Animal Health, CIRG, Makhdoom; 2BAHC, Mohanpur, Paschim Medinipur, West Bengal; 3Division of Parasitology, IVRI, Izatnagar
*Corresponding author:

Cryptosporidiosis is a diarrhoeal disease caused by members of the genus Cryptosporidium, an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite belonging to the phylum Apicomplexa. It causes diarrhoea in neonatal animals by infecting the intestines in an acute short–term manner. Cryptosporidium parvum is regarded as an important etiological agent of diarrhoea in neonatal ruminants, causing substantial economic losses both directly and indirectly. It spreads through the feco–oral route, frequently through contaminated water. The infected animals excrete oocysts in their faeces, which is resistant against inclement weather conditions. Upon ingestion the oocysts presumably excyst in the small intestine and invade the intestinal epithelium. Cryptosporidium does not require a vector or intermediate host and is capable of completing its life cycle within a single host, and it is also capable of autoinfection. Typically, neonatal animals below 3 months of age display clinical signs for a period varying from 5–15 days. The predominant symptom of cryptosporidiosis is mild–to–severe diarrhoea, but other clinical symptoms may include depression, dehydration, anorexia, listlessness, unthriftiness and abdominal pain. Cryptosporidiosis is an important zoonotic disease. Infected domestic and feral animals are considered as to be important sources in contaminating the environment and there have been many well–documented outbreaks of human cryptosporidiosis around the world. The diagnosis for Cryptosporidium infection is usually carried out through examination of faecal smears for the presence of oocysts by Modified Ziehl Neelsen (mZN) technique. Oral or intravenous fluid therapy to prevent dehydration is the most important treatment to alleviate the clinical signs of disease in both humans and animals due to absence of a single effective drug. At present Cryptosporidium is regarded as one of the major enteric pathogen in goat kids and morbidity could be high in outbreaks of cryptosporidiosis in kids. Under these circumstances, the control measures against the disease mainly rely on the knowledge on epidemiology of the disease. But, in India there are only a few published reports of goat cryptosporidiosis therefore more studies are required in the area of caprine cryptosporidiosis.

Key Words: Cryptosporidium, Cryptosporidiosis, Goats, Neonatal kids, Diarrhoea