Molecular survey of Babesia vogeli and Hepatozoon species in dogs from urban area of Midwestern Brazil

Maerle Oliveira Maia, André Luís Santos de Freitas, Jamila Guimarães Santos, Thábata dos Anjos Pacheco, Dirceu Guilherme de Souza Ramos, Glaucenyra Cecília Pinheiro da Silva, Valéria Dutra, Daniel Moura Aguiar, Richard Campos Pacheco


In Brazil, the most important tickborne pathogens affecting dogs include Babesia vogeli, Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma platys, Hepatozoon canis, and Mycoplasma haemocanis. Babesia spp. and Hepatozoon spp., transmitted by ixodid ticks, have been reported to naturally infect dogs and are widespread. The authors aimed to investigate the incidence of B. vogeli and Hepatozoon spp. infection using molecular methods to identify factors associated with the infection in dogs from urban areas of Cuiabá municipality, Midwestern Brazil. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay revealed a prevalence of 9.36% (Confidence Interval-CI 95%; 2.72%; 6.79%) and 9.61% (CI 95%; 7.0%; 13.0%) among dogs for B. vogeli and Hepatozoon, respectively. DNA sequences obtained from 10 Hepatozoon PCR positive samples were sequenced and were identical to one another and, moreover, were 100% (541/541 base of pairs-bp) homologous to the corresponding 18S rDNA sequences of H. canis. Twenty-five dogs (6.02%) generated amplicons using PCR protocols for both organisms, indicating co-infection by these two protozoans. To the best of our knowledge, our study was the first molecular survey to consider the entire population of dogs from the study area. Moreover, young dogs (0-12 months of age), as well as animals living in walled houses?without access to the street?were more susceptible to infection with B. vogeli and H. canis, respectively.


Canine babesiosis; Canine hepatozoonosis; PCR; Tick-borne diseases.

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Semina: Ciênc. Agrár.
Londrina - PR
E-ISSN 1679-0359
DOI: 10.5433/1679-0359
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