Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Onderstepoort Journal of Veterinary Research]]> vol. 75 num. 1 lang. pt <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>Can osteophagia provide giraffes with phosphorus and calcium?</b>]]> The daily requirement for calcium and phosphorus by giraffes to sustain the growth and maintenance of their skeletons is large. The source of sufficient calcium is browse. The source of necessary phosphorus is obscure, but it could be osteophagia, a frequently observed behaviour in giraffes. We have assessed whether bone ingested as a result of osteophagia can be digested in the rumen. Bone samples from cancellous (cervical vertebrae) and dense bones (metacarpal shaft) were immersed in the rumens of five sheep, for a period of up to 30 days, and the effect compared to immersion in distilled water and in artificial saliva for 30 days. Distilled water had no effect on the bones. Dense bone samples were softened by exposure to the saliva and rumen fluid, but did not lose either calcium or phosphorus. In saliva and rumen fluid the cancellous bone samples also softened, and their mass and volume decreased as a result of exposure to saliva, but in neither fluid did they lose significant amounts of calcium and phosphorus. We conclude that although saliva and rumen fluid can soften ingested bones, there is an insignificant digestion of bones in the rumen. <![CDATA[<b><i>Haemophilus paragallinarum</i></b><b> haemagglutinin: Role in adhesion, serotyping and pathogenicity</b>]]> It is suggested that Haemophilus paragallinarum requires at least three haemagglutinins for adhesion during infection. This paper reports the partial purification and characterization of the HA-L haemagglutinin from H. paragallinarum strain 46-C3, a heat sensitive, trypsin sensitive haemagglutinin that has been shown to be the serovar specific haemagglutinin in this organism. Using the pi and molecular mass obtained, it was shown that this protein shares similarities with other types of adhesins found in Gram-negative bacteria. The haemagglutination assay conditions were optimized at pH 7.5 at 37 °C. It was also shown that activity is enhanced by the addition of Ca²+ and Mn²+ ions. <![CDATA[<b>Evaluation of different adjuvants for foot-and-mouth disease vaccine containing all the SAT serotypes</b>]]> Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is an economically important disease of cloven-hoofed animals that is primarily controlled by vaccination of susceptible animals and movement restrictions for animals and animal-derived products in South Africa. Vaccination using aluminium hydroxide gel-saponin (AS) adjuvanted vaccines containing the South African Territories (SAT) serotypes has been shown to be effective both in ensuring that disease does not spread from the endemic to the free zone and in controlling outbreaks in the free zone. Various vaccine formulations containing antigens derived from the SAT serotypes were tested in cattle that were challenged 1 year later. Both the AS and ISA 206B vaccines adjuvanted with saponin protected cattle against virulent virus challenge. The oil-based ISA 206B-adjuvanted vaccine with and without stimulators was evaluated in a field trial and both elicited antibody responses that lasted for 1 year. Furthermore, the ISA 206 adjuvanted FMD vaccine protected groups of cattle against homologous virus challenge at very low payloads, while pigs vaccinated with an emergency ISA 206B-based FMD vaccine containing the SAT 1 vaccine strains were protected against the heterologous SAT 1 outbreak strain. <![CDATA[<b>Seroprevalence of antibodies to <i>Encephalitozoon cuniculi</i> in domestic rabbits in Nigeria</b>]]> Serum samples from 237 randomized rabbits from the five ecological zones of Nigeria, i.e. Northwest (NW), Northeast (NE), Southeast (SE), Southwest (SW) and Northcentral (NC), were evaluated for the presence of antibodies to Encephalitozoon cuniculi by the indirect immunofluorescent antibodies test. A titre of 10 or more was taken as positive. Thirty-nine (16.5 %) of the 237 samples were positive with 11, 10, 8, 6 and 4 seropositive rabbits occurring in the NW, NE, SE, SW and NC zones of Nigeria, respectively. Age, sex, live mass and access to grass as a feed supplement were not statistically (P &gt; 0.05) associated with seropositivity, but cage type (single-versus multi-rabbit type), contact with free-range rats and previous illness were strongly (P < 0.05) associated with it. The practice of selling unscreened and untreated 5 to 10-week-old weaners to prospective buyers as foundation stock, use of multi-rabbit communal cages, occasional release of rabbits in runs and contact with free-range house rats should be discouraged. Regular prophylactic and curative treatments, occasional serological screening to remove carriers, and the practice of a high level of hygiene in rabbit colonies are effective control measures. <![CDATA[<b>The financial cost implications of the highly pathogenic notifiable avian influenza H5N1 in Nigeria</b>]]> Nigeria and several other nations have recently been affected by outbreaks of the Asian H5N1 strain of highly pathogenic notifiable avian influenza (HPNAI) virus, which affects the pou sts associated with the current avian influenza outbreaks. The evaluation used epidemiological data, production figures and other input parameters to determine the final costs. An infection involving 10 % of the commercial bird population will cost Nigeria about $245 million and a worse scenario may lead to a loss of around $700 million. The results urge governments to invest more in measures aimed at the effective prevention of HPNAI and to consider the huge economic losses associated with the disease. Finally, an inter-disciplinary approach to managing and controlling HPNAI outbreaks is encouraged. <![CDATA[<b>Preliminary survey of ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) on cattle in Central Equatoria State, Southern Sudan</b>]]> In a preliminary survey conducted in 2005, the species composition and seasonality of ticks infesting cattle in Central Equatoria State, Southern Sudan was determined. Three locations were selected (Gumbo, Khor Rumla and Nyaing) and surveyed every 3 months. Two cattle herds in each of the three locations were visited four times during the study period. Total body collections of ticks were made from each of five cattle (Nilotic Zebu breed) kept in six different herds. Four tick genera and ten species were identified. The tick species identified were Amblyomma lepidum, Amblyomma variegatum, Boophilus annulatus, Boophilus decoloratus, Hyalomma marginatum rufipes, Hyalomma truncatum, Rhipicephalus appendiculatus, Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi, Rhipicephalus praetextatus and Rhipicephalus sanguineus group. The highest number of ticks was collected in October during the rainy season. A finding of great significance was that R. appendiculatus, vector of East Coast fever, has now firmly established itself throughout the year with possible implications for cattle production in Central Equatoria State. <![CDATA[<b>Field experiences with early pregnancy diagnosis by progesterone-based ELISA in sows</b>]]> In four Kenyan pig breeding units the pregnancy diagnosis of sows has been carried out in two groups: Group 1 (n = 1911): the sows were transrectaly pregnancy tested between Days 17-22 post-mating by ultrasound. Sows testing non-pregnant immediately received one dose of 400 IU pregnant mare serum gonadotropin (PMSG) (equine chorion gonadotropin, eCG) and 200 IU human chorion gonadotropin (hCG). On showing signs of oestrous, the animals were subsequently artificially inseminated (AI). Group 2 (n = 1923): sows were pregnancy tested by serum progesterone (P4)-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) on Day 17 post-breeding. P4 concentrations were categorized as positive (&gt; 5 ng/ml) or negative (< 5 ng/ml). Sows testing nonpregnant immediately received one dose of 400 IU PMSG and 200 IU hCG by injection, and were subsequently artificially inseminated. The following parameters were evaluated: sows diagnosed non-pregnant, days from first post-weaning insemination until the sows were inseminated at their first return to oestrus; farrowing rate and total piglets born and number of live-born piglets in litters. The percentage of sows diagnosed non-pregnant in the two groups, as well as the totals of born piglets and of live-born piglets in litters did not differ significantly between the two groups. The number of days from the first post-weaning mating until the sows were artificially inseminated at their first return to oestrus and the administration of eCG and hCG was shorter (P < 0.01) and farrowing rate was higher (P < 0.01) in the ELISA-tested sows. <![CDATA[<b>An immunohistochemical study of ovarian innervation in the emu <i>(Dromaius novaehollandiae)</i></b>]]> The present study investigated the distribution of nerves in the ovary of the emu. The neuronal markers, protein gene product 9.5, neurofilament protein and neuron specific enolase demonstrated the constituents of the extrinsic and intrinsic ovarian neural systems. The extrinsic neural system was composed of ganglia in the ovarian stalk, as well as nerve bundles, which were distributed throughout the ovary. Isolated neuronal cell bodies, in the medulla and cortex, formed the intrinsic neural system. An interesting finding of the study was the presence of nerve bundles, circumscribed by lymphocytes, in the ovarian stalk. The findings of the study indicate that the distribution of nerve fibres and neuronal cell bodies in the emu ovary is similar, but not identical to that of the domestic fowl and ostrich. <![CDATA[<b>Effect of <i>Peganum harmala (</i>wild rue) extract on experimental ovine malignant theileriosis: Pathological and parasitological findings</b>]]> Malignant theileriosis of sheep is a highly fatal, acute or subacute disease is caused by the tick-borne protozoan parasite, Theileria hirci. In this investigation ten healthy male lambs aged 5-6 months were randomly divided into two groups, A and B and were kept in isolated tick-proof pens. They were treated for internal and external parasite before commencement of the experiment. The lambs were experimentally infected with T. hirci by placing ticks Hyalomma anatolicum anatolicum infected with T. hirci on them. The ticks used in this survey had originally been isolated from sheep and colonies of them were established in an insectarium. Before and after infection rectal temperatures and clinical signs of the lambs were recorded, blood and prescapular lymph node smears were prepared and examined to determine the extent of the parasitaemia, and blood samples were analyzed to evaluate their haemoglobin (Hb) and packed cell volume (PCV) rates. Three days after the commencement of a febrile reaction and appearance of the schizonts in the lymph node smears, treatment of the lambs in Group A with an extract containing the alkaloids of Peganum harmala (wild rue) was commenced. Group B lambs were kept untreated controls. Before treatment there were no significant differences in the rectal temperature, parasitaemia rate, and the Hb and PCV values between animals in the two groups but after treatment significant differences in these values was detected (P < 0.05). After treatment, the clinical signs and parasites in the lymph node smears of the animals in Group A disappeared and they all animals recovered. These parameters in the animals of Group B progressed until their death. Pathological studies showed the characteristic lesions of theileriosis in lambs in Group B, but not in Group A. The results indicate a therapeutic effect of the alkaloids of P. harmala for treatment of ovine malignant theileriosis. <![CDATA[<b>Prevalence of bovine trypanosomosis in Central Mozambique from 2002 to 2005</b>]]> The study is the result of analyzing 16 895 blood smears of cattle collected at 180 sites in the provinces of Manica, Sofala, Zambézia and Tete in Mozambique. Of the blood smears 73.9 % were from Manica, 11.8 % from Tete, 8.5 % from Sofala and 5.8 % from Zambézia; 75.6 % of these were collected from smallholder cattle. Infections with trypanosomes were highest in smallholder cattle from Sofala Province with 36.8 % of the 872 blood smears examined positive for trypanosomes, and lowest in cattle of commercial farmers in Manica Province with only 6.2 % of 2 252 blood smears being positive. Trypanosoma congolense was the predominant species, followed by Trypanosoma vivax and Trypanosoma brucei sensu lato. Trypanosoma brucei, which also infects humans, was more frequent in the districts of Buzi, Mutarara and Morrumbala with 15.1 %, 10.5 % and 9.8 % of all examined cattle in 2005 being infected with it, respectively. The results show a significant increase in the infection rate with trypanosomes compared with results obtained in previous years by the Regional Veterinary Laboratory in Manica Province and by the Regional Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Control Programme in Zambézia, Tete and Sofala provinces. <![CDATA[<b>The prevalence and distribution of <i>Argas walkerae </i>(Acari: Argasidae) in the eastern region of the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa</b>]]> The prevalence and geographic distribution of the fowl tampan, Argas walkerae Kaiser & Hoogstraal, 1969 was determined in the eastern region of the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa by inspecting two fowl houses in the vicinity of each of 72 randomly selected communal cattle dip-tanks. Tampans were collected from 102 (70.8 %) of the 144 fowl houses in the neighbourhood of 57 (79.2 %) of the 72 selected dip-tanks, and the localities of the collections were mapped. Argas walkerae was present in fowl houses from the warm coastal regions of the Indian Ocean in the south to the cold and mountainous Drakensberg in the north-east of the Province. Taking into account the probable sensitivity of the sampling method, it is estimated that A. walkerae is likely to be present in fowl houses belonging to between 74 and 84 % of communities making use of cattle dip-tanks in the eastern region of the Eastern Cape Province, and that when it is present, between 64 and 75 %> of fowl houses will be infested. The geographic distribution of A. walkerae seemed to be more strongly associated with the presence of fowls and fowl houses containing raw or processed wood in their structure than with climate.