Expert articles

Heartworm adulticide treatment: a tropical perspective

Filipe Dantas-Torres, Jennifer Ketzis, Gabriela Pérez Tort, Andrei Daniel Mihalca, Gad Baneth, Domenico Otranto, Malaika Watanabe, Bui Khanh Linh, Tawin Inpankaew, Pablo Borrás, Sangaran Arumugam, Barend Louis Penzhorn, Adrian Patalinghug Ybañez, Peter Irwin, Rebecca J Traub

Dirofilaria immitis (the canine heartworm) is widespread in the tropics, with prevalence surpassing 30% in high-risk areas. In addition to the suitable climatic conditions that favour mosquito abundance and filarial larva development, there is low compliance with the recommended year-round use of preventives in these transmission hotspots. This represents a major concern, considering that melarsomine (first-line heartworm adulticide) is unavailable in several tropical countries, resulting in the so-called slow-kill protocol being the only available adulticide treatment option. In this article, the members of TroCCAP (Tropical Council for Companion Animal Parasites) review the current distribution of heartworm in the tropics and the availability of melarsomine, and discuss alternatives for the management of heartworm infections in dogs.

Read full text at: Parasit Vectors. 2023;16:148.


Toward the formation of a Companion Animal Parasite Council for the Tropics (CAPCT)

Rebecca J. Traub, Peter Irwin, Filipe Dantas-Torres, Gabriela Pérez Tort, Norma Vollmer Labarthe, Tawin Inpankaew, Mukulesh Gatne, Bui Khanh Linh, Volker Schwan, Malaika Watanabe, Susanne Siebert, Norbert Mencke, and Roland Schaper.

This letter advises the imminent formation of the Companion Animal Parasites Council for the Tropics (CAPCT). The CAPCT consists of region-specific (e.g., Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Caribbean, Africa) experts comprising academics, veterinarians, parasitologists, physicians and allied industry partners that will work together to inform, guide and develop best-practice recommendations and specialist advice for vets for the optimal diagnosis, treatment and control of companion animal parasites in the tropics, with the aim of protecting the health of pets and that of the public.

Read free full text at: Parasit Vectors. 2015;8:271

TroCCAP recommendations for the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of parasitic infections in dogs and cats in the tropics

Filipe Dantas-Torres, Jennifer Ketzis, Andrei D. Mihalca, Gad Baneth, Domenico Otranto Gabriela Perez Tort, Malaika Watanabe, Bui KhanhLinh, Tawin Inpankaew, Pablo D. Jimenez Castro, Pablo Borras, Arumugam Sangaran, Barend L. Penzhorn, Adrian Patalinghug Ybanez, Peter Irwin, Rebecca J. Traub

The Tropical Council for Companion Animal Parasites Ltd. (TroCCAP) is a not-for-profit organisation whose mission is to independently inform, guide and make best-practice recommendations for the diagnosis, treatment and control of companion animal parasites in the tropics and sub-tropics, with the aim of protecting animal and human health. In line with this primary mission, TroCCAP recently developed guidelines for the diagnosis, treatment and control of feline and canine parasites in the tropics.

The development of these guidelines required unique and complex considerations to be addressed, often inapplicable to developed nations. Much of the tropics encompass middle-to-low income countries in which poor standards of environmental hygiene and large populations of stray dogs and cats coexist. In these regions, a range of parasites pose a high risk to companion animals, which ultimately may place their owners at risk of acquiring parasitic zoonoses.

These considerations led to the development of unique recommendations with regard, for example, to deworming and endoparasite testing intervals for the control of both global and ‘region-specific’ parasites in the tropics. Moreover, the ‘off-’ or ‘extra’-label use of drugs for the treatment and control of parasitic
infections is common practice in many tropical countries and many generic products lack manufacturers’ information on efficacy, safety, and quality control.

Recommendations and advice concerning the use of such drugs and protocols are also addressed in these guidelines. The formation of these guidelines is an important first step towards improving the education of veterinarians specifically regarding best-practice for the diagnosis, treatment and control of canine and feline parasites in the tropics. This is why TroCCAP exists, to provide world-leading and up-to-date, accurate advice for veterinarians about animal parasites. Specifically, how to manage, treat and control them in the tropics and sub-tropics.

Read full text at: Vet Parasitol. 2020;283:109167