Genotype of 88 Toxoplasma gondii isolates associated with toxoplasmosis in immunocompromised patients and correlation with clinical findings

J Infect Dis. 2009 Apr 15;199(8):1155-67. doi: 10.1086/597477.


We report the genotyping analysis of Toxoplasma gondii isolates in samples collected from 88 immunocompromised patients, along with clinical and epidemiological data. Most of these samples were collected in France during the current decade by the Toxoplasma Biological Resource Center. Lack of specific anti-Toxoplasma treatment, pulmonary toxoplasmosis, and involvement of multiple organs were the 3 main risk factors associated with death for this patient group. Genotyping results with 6 microsatellite markers showed that type II isolates were predominant among patients who acquired toxoplasmic infection in Europe. Non-type II isolates included 13 different genotypes and were mainly collected from patients who acquired toxoplasmosis outside Europe. Type III was the second most common genotype recovered from patients, whereas type I was rare in our population. Three nonarchetypal genotypes were repeatedly recovered from different patients who acquired the infection in sub-Saharan Africa (genotypes Africa 1 and Africa 2) and in the French West Indies (genotype Caribbean 1). The distribution of genotypes (type II vs. non-type II) was not significantly different when patients were stratified by underlying cause of immunosuppression, site of infection, or outcome. We conclude that in immunocompromised patients, host factors are much more involved than parasite factors in patients' resistance or susceptibility to toxoplasmosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Encephalitis / complications
  • Encephalitis / mortality
  • Encephalitis / parasitology
  • France / epidemiology
  • Genotype
  • HIV Infections / complications
  • HIV Infections / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunocompromised Host*
  • Lung Diseases, Parasitic / complications
  • Lung Diseases, Parasitic / mortality
  • Lung Diseases, Parasitic / parasitology
  • Toxoplasma / classification
  • Toxoplasma / genetics*
  • Toxoplasmosis / complications
  • Toxoplasmosis / mortality
  • Toxoplasmosis / parasitology*