Survey of Anaplasmataceae bacteria in sheep from Senegal
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The authors studied the role of bacteria belonging to Anaplasmataceae family as the causes of acute illnesses of sheep in West Africa.
We examined and sampled 120 febrile sheep in two regions of Senegal for this study. The DNA extracted from these blood samples was tested by PCR using two pairs of primers (groEL-based and 16S rRNA gene-based).
In 52/120 samples, the microscopic examination revealed intraerythrocytic and/or intraphagocytic spherical inclusions. In 48/52 cases, we succeeded in identifying the bacterial agent: in 38 cases, it was Anaplasma ovis; in six cases, it was Ehrlichia ruminantium; in two cases, Anaplasma phagocytophilum; in one case, Anaplasma platys; and in one case, a yet uncultured Anaplasma sp. closely related to A. phagocytophilum.
Our studies demonstrated the great variety of pathogenic bacteria from the Anaplasmataceae family in the blood of clinically ill sheep. A. ovis was identified unexpectedly often. For the first time, A. phagocytophilum was found in sub-Saharan Africa, and its further epidemiology may be now reconsidered. The roles of canine pathogen, A. platys, and yet undescribed Anaplasma sp. “Badiouré” in ovine pathology should be more closely studied.
KeywordSheep Anaplasmosis Ehrlichiosis Ixodid ticks Senegal
The present work was partly supported by an Agence National de Recherche (ANR) grant 2010 MALEMAF (research on emergent pathogens in Africa) and the Foundation Mediterranée Infection. We thank the villagers of Niayes and Ziguinchor regions for their benevolence.
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