Parasitology Research

, Volume 97, Issue 1, pp 77–79 | Cite as

Prevalence of Theileriosis in Red Hartebeest (Alcelaphus buselaphus caama) in Namibia

  • Eva Spitalska
  • Michael Riddell
  • Heloise Heyne
  • Olivier A. E. Sparagano
Original Paper


A total of 23 blood samples from Red Hartebeest and 28 ticks of the subspecies Rhipicephalus evertsi were collected in Namibia during the summer 2003. For a Piroplasmida species, Theileria sp 95.7% of blood and 50.0% of tick samples (all R. e. mimeticus, none of R. e. evertsi were carrying the pathogen) were PCR positive. Sequencing showed infection from a re-emerging mild species of Theileria phylogenetically different from other African Theileria species such as Theileria parva, T. buffeli, T. annulata, T. taurotragi or T. mutans.


Theileria spRed Hartebeest Africa PCR Sequencing 



Dr. Spitalska was partially supported by a NATO/Royal Society Postdoctoral Fellowship. The experiments presented in this paper comply with the current laws in UK.


  1. Allsopp MTEP, Cavalier-Smith T, de Waal DT, Allsopp BA (1994) Phylogeny and evolution of the piroplasmidae. Parasitol 108:147–152Google Scholar
  2. Arctander P, Johansen C, Coutellec-Vreto MA (1999) Phylogeography of three closely related African bovids (tribe Alcelaphini). Mol Biol Evol 16:1724–1739Google Scholar
  3. Flagstad O, Syversten PO, Stenseth NC, Stacy JE, Olsaker I, Roed KH, Jakobsen KS (2000) Genetic variability in Swayne’s hartebeest, an endangered antelope of Ethiopia. Conservation Biol 14:254–264CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Gray MA, Luckins AG, Rae PF, Brown CGD (1980) Evaluation of an enzyme immunoassay for serodiagnosis of infections with Theileria parva and T. annulata. Res Vet Sci 29:360–366PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Gubbels MJ, de Vos AP, van der Weide M, Viseras J, Schouls LM, de Vries E, Jongejan F (1999) Simultaneous detection of bovine Theileria and Babesia species by reverse line blot hybridization. J Clin Microbiol 37:1782–1789PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Leemans I, Hooshmand-Rad P, Uggla A (1997) The indirect fluorescent antibody test based on schizont antigen for study of the sheep parasite Theileria lestoquardi. Vet Parasitol 69:9–18CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Norval RAI, Perry BD, Young AS (1992) The epidemiology of theileriosis in Africa. Academic, London, p 469Google Scholar
  8. Papadopoulos B, Perie NM, Uilenberg G (1996) Piroplasms of domestic animals in the Macedonia region of Greece. 1. Serological cross-reactions. Vet Parasitol 63:41–56CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Schnittger L, Yin H, Qi B, Gubbels MH, Beyer D, Niemann S, Jongejan F, Ahmed JS (2004) Simultaneous detection and differentiation of Theileria and Babesia parasites infecting small ruminants by reverse line blotting. Parasitol Res 92:189–196CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Sparagano OAE, Allsopp MTEP, Mank RA, Rijpkema SGT, Figueroa JV, Jongejan F (1999) Molecular detection of pathogen DNA in ticks (Acari: Ixodidae): a review. Exp Appl Acarol 23:929–960CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Stoltsz WH, Dunsterville MT (1992) In vitro establishment and cultivation of a Cytauxzoon sp. (Theileria sp.) from a sable antelope (Hippotragus niger, Harris 1838). J South African Vet Assoc 63:176–186Google Scholar
  12. Thomas SE, Wilson DE, Mason TE (1982) Babesia, Theileria and Anaplasma spp infecting sable antelope, Hippotragus niger (Harris 1838), in Southern Africa. Onderstepoort J Vet Res 49:163–166PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Walker AR, McKellar SB, Bell LJ, Brown CGD (1979) Rapid quantitative assessment of Theileria infection in ticks. Trop An Hlth Prod 11:21–26Google Scholar
  14. Walker JB, Keirans JE, Horak IG (2000) The Genus Rhipicephalus (Acari, Ixodidae). A guide to the brown ticks of the World. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, p 643Google Scholar
  15. Watt D, Sparagano OAE, Brown CGD, Walker AR (1997) Use of the polymerase chain reaction for identification and quantification of Theileria parva protozoa in Rhipicephalus appendiculatus ticks. Parasitol Res 83:359–363CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eva Spitalska
    • 1
    • 2
  • Michael Riddell
    • 1
  • Heloise Heyne
    • 3
  • Olivier A. E. Sparagano
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Agriculture, Food and Rural DevelopmentUniversity of NewcastleNewcastle upon TyneUnited Kingdom
  2. 2.Institute of VirologySlovak Academy of SciencesBratislavaSlovakia
  3. 3.ParasitologyARC-Onderstepoort Veterinary InstituteRepublic of South Africa

Personalised recommendations