An experimental infection of Trypanosoma cruzi in striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis). Academic Article uri icon


  • Four adult (3 male, 1 female) captive-raised, decented, striped skunks (Mephritis mephitis) were infected experimentaly with a field strain (Texas-Tulane) of Trypanosoma cruzi, originally isolated from a naturally-infected dog. Two skunks were injected intravenously with approximately 4.5 x 10(6) viable T. cruzi trypomastigotes. Two skunks were inoculated per os and per conjunctivum with 10 ml of phosphate buffered saline containing macerated, T. cruzi-infected triatomine intestines and intestinal contents. The skunks had minimal clinical manifestations with no mortalities occurring during 46 days post-exposure. Sera from all skunks were positive at 24 days post-inoculation (PI) by the direct and latex agglutination tests. Blood cultures from the 4 skunksd were positive for T. cruzi at day 24 PI and 3 were positive at day 46 PI. All skunks had mild to moderately severe chronic granulomatous myocarditis of the atria and ventricles. Typical T. cruzi amastigotes were present within myocardial fibers in 3 of 4 skunks.

published proceedings

  • J Wildl Dis

author list (cited authors)

  • Davis, D. S., Russell, L. H., Adams, L. G., Yaeger, R. G., & Robinson, R. M.

citation count

  • 14

complete list of authors

  • Davis, DS||Russell, LH||Adams, LG||Yaeger, RG||Robinson, RM

publication date

  • July 1980