Identification of ticks and detection of blood protozoa in friesian cattle by polmerase chain reacton test and estimation of blood parameters in district Kasur, Pakistan

A Z Durrani, N Kamal
Tropical Animal Health and Production 2008, 40 (6): 441-7
The study was carried out to detect Theileria annulata, the causative agent of theileriosis, and Babesia bovis, the causative agent for babesiosis, in Friesian cattle by PCR and conventional blood smear examination. One hundred blood samples obtained from diseased Friesian cattle kept on private livestock farms at Pattoki, District Kasur, Pakistan were collected in addition to 20 blood samples obtained from non-diseased animals. The disease manifestations observed clinically included high fever, swelling of sub mandibular and sub scapular lymph nodes, weakness, increased respiration and pulse, anorexia, loss of condition and rough hair coat. Neurologic sign of in coordination was also seen in weak animals. Signs of lacrimation, pale conjunctiva, diarrhoea, dyspnea and frothy nasal discharge were observed in only one animal. Clinically nine animals showed signs of haemoglobinuria. Diagnosis of bovine theileria and babesia species was based on finding many intraerythrocytic piroplasms of both blood protozoa with clinical signs associated with anaemia, lymph node hyperplasia and haemoglobinuria. One hundred samples of ticks were also collected for identification of vector. Results showed that the prevalence of Hyalomma tick was highest (15%) followed by Boophilus (12%), Haemaphysalis (5%) and Rhipicephalus (3%). The blood smear examination showed 21% (21/100) samples positive for blood parasites out of which 66.6% (14/ 21) samples were positive for theileriosis while 42.8% (9/21) were positive for babesiosis. It was also recorded that 66.66% (6/9) samples were positive for B.bigemina while 33.33% (3/9) were positive for B.bovis. The results showed that 60% (60/100) samples were positive for blood parasites by PCR test. Out of these 60% (36/60) were positive for T.annulata while 33.33% (20/60) were positive for babesia. The specificity and sensitivity of PCR test was higher than blood smear examination. The blood parameters in haemoparasites infection were also analyzed and the results showed significant decrease in total erythrocyte count and haemoglobin while MCV, MCH values increased and MCHC was slightly less than normal indicating macrocytic hypochromic anaemia.

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