Toxoplasma gondii and the role of pork
Toxoplasma gondii is an important zoonotic pathogen. Humans can acquire T. gondii infection through foodborne or environmental exposure, and recent estimates suggest that more than 10 million human cases of toxoplasmosis occur globally every year. Infections in humans can be post-natal (i.e. acquired toxoplasmosis) or vertical (i.e. congenital toxoplasmosis). Because congenital toxoplasmosis is considered particu-larly problematic due to the severe health effects it can cause in children since birth and the possibility of fetal death, its public health impact has been more extensively studied than acquired toxoplasmosis, where infection is usually associated with mild flu-like symptoms. However, several newer studies suggest that in some cases ocular disease and severe syndromes such as psychiatric disorders may develop as a result of infection.