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Comparative studies on faecal egg counting techniques used for the detection of gastrointestinal parasites of equines: A systematic review

Ghafar, A., Abbas, G., King, J., Jacobson, C.ORCID: 0000-0001-9427-1941, Hughes, K.J., El-Hage, C., Beasley, A., Bauquier, J., Wilkes, E.J.A., Hurley, J., Cudmore, L., Carrigan, P., Tennent-Brown, B., Nielsen, M.K., Gauci, C.G., Beveridge, I. and Jabbar, A. (2021) Comparative studies on faecal egg counting techniques used for the detection of gastrointestinal parasites of equines: A systematic review. Current Research in Parasitology & Vector-Borne Diseases, 1 . Art. 100046.

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Abstract

Faecal egg counting techniques (FECT) form the cornerstone for the detection of gastrointestinal parasites in equines. For this purpose, several flotation, centrifugation, image- and artificial intelligence-based techniques are used, with varying levels of performance. This review aimed to critically appraise the literature on the assessment and comparison of various coprological techniques and/or modifications of these techniques used for equines and to identify the knowledge gaps and future research directions. We searched three databases for published scientific studies on the assessment and comparison of FECT in equines and included 27 studies in the final synthesis. Overall, the performance parameters of McMaster (81.5%), Mini-FLOTAC® (33.3%) and simple flotation (25.5%) techniques were assessed in most of the studies, with 77.8% of them comparing the performance of at least two or three methods. The detection of strongyle, Parascaris spp. and cestode eggs was assessed for various FECT in 70.4%, 18.5% and 18.5% studies, respectively. A sugar-based flotation solution with a specific gravity of ≥1.2 was found to be the optimal flotation solution for parasitic eggs in the majority of FECT. No uniform or standardised protocol was followed for the comparison of various FECT, and the tested sample size (i.e. equine population and faecal samples) also varied substantially across all studies. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first systematic review to evaluate studies on the comparison of FECT in equines and it highlights important knowledge gaps in the evaluation and comparison of such techniques.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Centre for Animal Production and Health
Publisher: Elsevier B.V.
Copyright: © 2021 The Author(s).
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/64411
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