Seroprevalence of Anti-toxoplasma IgG and IgM among pregnant women attending antenatal clinic in Jos-North, Plateau State, Nigeria

Document Type : Original Article


Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Jos, Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria


Background: Toxoplasmosis, one of the TORCH infections in pregnancy is caused by Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite which can cause severe complications for an infected mother if the primary infection was acquired during pregnancy. Aim: This study aimed to determine the seroprevalence of anti-Toxoplasma IgG and IgM antibodies and the associated risk factors in pregnant women attending antenatal clinics in Jos-North, Plateau State, Nigeria. Methods: Descriptive cross-sectional study was undertaken involving a total of 158 consenting pregnant women visiting health facilities in Jos from March to June 2020. Data regarding socio-demographics and associated factors were gathered using questionnaire. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was deployed to test for anti-T. gondii IgG and IgM antibodies. Results: The seroprevalence of anti-Toxoplasma IgG was 26.6% while that of IgM was 5.7%. Seven (4.4%) women were seropositive for both IgG and IgM anti-Toxoplasma antibodies. Amongst all the socio-demographics assessed, only occupation was significantly associated with prevalence of anti-Toxoplasma antibodies (p < /em> = 0.035). Amongst the risk factors, regular contact with soil and source of drinking water were significantly associated with T. gondii infection (p < /em> = 0.028 and p < /em> = 0.002 respectively). Conclusion: Serological evidence showed that pregnant women in the current study had moderate exposure to Toxoplasma gondii while 72.2% of the study subjects have not any previous exposure are at risk of toxoplasmosis. Hence, regular screening for T. gondii infection is recommended during pregnancy and antenatal care.


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