Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Onderstepoort Journal of Veterinary Research]]> vol. 84 num. 1 lang. es <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>Comparison of three nucleic acid-based tests for detecting <em>Anaplasma marginale and Anaplasma centrale</em> in cattle</b>]]> Several nucleic acid-based assays have been developed for detecting Anaplasma marginale and Anaplasma centrale in vectors and hosts, making the choice of method to use in endemic areas difficult. We evaluated the ability of the reverse line blot (RLB) hybridisation assay, two nested polymerase chain reaction (nPCR) assays and a duplex real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) assay to detect A. marginale and A. centrale infections in cattle (n = 66) in South Africa. The lowest detection limits for A. marginale plasmid DNA were 2500 copies by the RLB assay, 250 copies by the nPCR and qPCR assays and 2500, 250 and 25 copies of A. centrale plasmid DNA by the RLB, nPCR and qPCR assays respectively. The qPCR assay detected more A. marginale- and A. centrale-positive samples than the other assays, either as single or mixed infections. Although the results of the qPCR and nPCR tests were in agreement for the majority (38) of A. marginale-positive samples, 13 samples tested negative for A. marginale using nPCR but positive using qPCR. To explain this discrepancy, the target sequence region of the nPCR assay was evaluated by cloning and sequencing the msp1β gene from selected field samples. The results indicated sequence variation in the internal forward primer (AM100) area amongst the South African A. marginale msp1β sequences, resulting in false negatives. We propose the use of the duplex qPCR assay in future studies as it is more sensitive and offers the benefits of quantification and multiplex detection of both Anaplasma spp. <![CDATA[<b>Molecular surveillance of spotted fever group rickettsioses in wildlife and detection of <em>Rickettsia sibirica</em> in a Topi (<em>Damaliscus lunatus ssp. jimela</em>) in Kenya</b>]]> Spotted fever group rickettsioses are a group of tick-borne zoonotic diseases caused by intracellular bacteria of the genus Rickettsia. The diseases are widely reported amongst international travellers returning from most sub-Saharan Africa with fever, yet their importance in local populations largely remains unknown. Although this has started to change and recently there have been increasing reports of the diseases in livestock, ticks and humans in Kenya, they have not been investigated in wildlife. We examined the presence, prevalence and species of Rickettsia present in wildlife in two regions of Kenya with a unique human-wildlife-livestock interface. For this purpose, 79 wild animals in Laikipia County and 73 in Maasai Mara National Reserve were sampled. DNA extracted from blood was tested using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to amplify the intergenic spacer rpmE-tRNAfMet and the citrate synthase-encoding gene gltA. Rickettsial DNA was detected in 2 of the 79 (2.5%) animals in Laikipia and 4 of the 73 (5.5%) in Maasai Mara. The PCR-positive amplicons of the gltA gene were sequenced to determine the detected Rickettsia species. This revealed Rickettsia sibirica in a Topi (Damaliscus lunatus ssp. jimela). This is the first report of spotted fever group rickettsioses in wildlife and the first to report R. sibirica in Kenya. The finding demonstrates the potential role of wild animals in the circulation of the diseases. <![CDATA[<b>Parasites of domestic and wild animals in South Africa. XLIX. Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) infesting white and black rhinoceroses in southern Africa</b>]]> The objectives of the study were to determine the species composition of ticks infesting white and black rhinoceroses in southern Africa as well as the conservation status of those tick species that prefer rhinos as hosts. Ticks were collected opportunistically from rhinos that had been immobilised for management purposes, and 447 white rhinoceroses (Ceratotherium simum) and 164 black rhinoceroses (Diceros bicornis) were sampled in South Africa, 61 black rhinos in Namibia, 18 white and 12 black rhinos in Zimbabwe, and 24 black rhinos in Zambia. Nineteen tick species were recovered, of which two species, Amblyomma rhinocerotis and Dermacentor rhinocerinus, prefer rhinos as hosts. A. rhinocerotis was collected only in the north-eastern KwaZulu-Natal reserves of South Africa and is endangered, while D. rhinocerinus is present in these reserves as well as in the Kruger National Park and surrounding conservancies. Eight of the tick species collected from the rhinos are ornate, and seven species are regularly collected from cattle. The species present on rhinos in the eastern, moister reserves of South Africa were amongst others Amblyomma hebraeum, A. rhinocerotis, D. rhinocerinus, Rhipicephalus maculatus, Rhipicephalus simus and Rhipicephalus zumpti, while those on rhinos in the Karoo and the drier western regions, including Namibia, were the drought-tolerant species, Hyalomma glabrum, Hyalomma rufipes, Hyalomma truncatum and Rhipicephalus gertrudae. The species composition of ticks on rhinoceroses in Zambia differed markedly from those of the other southern African countries in that Amblyomma sparsum, Amblyomma tholloni and Amblyomma variegatum accounted for the majority of infestations. <![CDATA[<b>Wildlife-livestock interactions and risk areas for cross-species spread of bovine tuberculosis</b>]]> The transmission of diseases between livestock and wildlife can be a hindrance to effective disease control. Maintenance hosts and contact rates should be explored to further understand the transmission dynamics at the wildlife-livestock interface. Bovine tuberculosis (BTB) has been shown to have wildlife maintenance hosts and has been confirmed as present in the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) in the Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP) in Uganda since the 1960s. The first aim of this study was to explore the spatio-temporal spread of cattle illegally grazing within the QENP recorded by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) rangers in a wildlife crime database. Secondly, we aimed to quantify wildlife-livestock interactions and cattle movements, on the border of QENP, using a longitudinal questionnaire completed by 30 livestock owners. From this database, 426 cattle sightings were recorded within QENP in 8 years. Thirteen (3.1%) of these came within a 300 m-4 week space-time window of a buffalo herd, using the recorded GPS data. Livestock owners reported an average of 1.04 (95% CI 0.97-1.11) sightings of Uganda kob, waterbuck, buffalo or warthog per day over a 3-month period, with a rate of 0.22 (95% CI 0.20-0.25) sightings of buffalo per farmer per day. Reports placed 85.3% of the ungulate sightings and 88.0% of the buffalo sightings as further than 50 m away. Ungulate sightings were more likely to be closer to cattle at the homestead (OR 2.0, 95% CI 1.1-3.6) compared with the grazing area. Each cattle herd mixed with an average of five other cattle herds at both the communal grazing and watering points on a daily basis. Although wildlife and cattle regularly shared grazing and watering areas, they seldom came into contact close enough for aerosol transmission. Between species infection transmission is therefore likely to be by indirect or non-respiratory routes, which is suspected to be an infrequent mechanism of transmission of BTB. Occasional cross-species spillover of infection is possible, and the interaction of multiple wildlife species needs further investigation. Controlling the interface between wildlife and cattle in a situation where eradication is not being considered may have little impact on BTB disease control in cattle.