A naturally occurring outbreak of fasciolosis in a group of 20 Merinolandschaf (German Merino) sheep was studied. Hematological and blood biochemical values in sheep spontaneously infected with liver fluke Fasciola hepatica were compared with equivalent values in 20 parasite-free sheep from organically farmed flock. Investigated animals were kept in outdoor system, on pastures covered with swamps, which remain flooded after rainy season. Significantly lower red blood cell (RBC) count, lymphocytes, hemoglobin (Hb), packed cell volume (PCV), mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine, and albumin were recorded in sheep from the infected herd, whereas white blood cell (WBC) count, eosinophil, segmented and band neutrophil count, mean corpuscular volume (MCV), gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT), concentrations of glucose, and globulins were significantly higher than in the parasite free herd. No significant correlation between the investigated blood parameters and the number of F. hepatica eggs in the feces was detected. This study shows that hematological and biochemical values can be useful in early diagnosis and prognosis of sheep fasciolosis.
Packed Cell Volume Mean Corpuscular Volume Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration Gastrointestinal Nematode
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This work was supported by the projects TP3083 and 0053301 (Ministry of Science, Education and Sport, Croatia) and complies with the current laws for research on animals in Croatia.
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