A case of bovine trypanosomiasis caused by Trypanosoma theileri in Sicily, Italy
Despite some researchers reporting clinical signs in cattle associated with Trypanosoma theileri, its role as a pathogen is still unclear. We describe here the isolation of Trypanosoma theileri during a routine laboratory investigation. Mature and immature vital parasitic forms were observed within hematopoietic cell cultures from the bone marrow of one cow for monocyte isolation. The animal was submitted to clinical examination and blood sample counting (CBC). Postmortem analysis included gross and histological examination and PCR in the liver, spleen, brain, lymph nodes, and lungs. PCR and Giemsa staining were used for parasite identification. A second cow belonging to the same farm was positive for Trypanosoma theileri by PCR performed on blood sample. In this case, the postmortem analysis included also testis. Clinical examination showed only a reduction in body weight in both cases. The CBC revealed an increase of lymphocytes and neutrophils while red blood cells were within the normal range. Spleen was slightly increased in volume and the histology revealed a proliferative activity of the white and red pulp. The biomolecular analysis identified the parasite as Trypanosoma theileri and its DNA was detected in the bone marrow, testis, and brain. The unusual finding of parasite in the brain, testis, and bone marrow raises new clinical implication on disease course and also possible sexual transmission.
KeywordsTrypanosoma Cattle Bone marrow Phylogeny
The authors thank Emanuela Leonardi, Elena Rappazzo, and Giovanna Romeo for their technical support.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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