Abstract
MOLECULAR PREVALENCE AND PHYLOGENY OF SOME TICK-BORNE PARASITES IN RUMINANTS IN SINAI PENINSULA, EGYPT

Safaa Mohamed Barghash*

ABSTRACT

Background: Babesia and Theileria are the etiological agents of babesiosis and theileriosis. Among them, some species are highly pathogenic and cause serious economic losses to livestock holders, especially in desert areas of Egypt. Objective: The present study aimed to prevalent and phylogeny characterizes three subspecies, Babesia bovis, Babesia bigemina, and Theileria annulata, infecting ruminants in Sinai, Egypt. Methods: 230 field blood samples (74 cattle, 48 goats, and 108 sheep) were collected randomly from March 2020 to April 2021. They investigated by three PCR-based assays targeting B. bovis Rhoptry Associated Protein-4, B. bigemina BbigRAP-1a, and T. annulata merozoite surface antigen-1 genes. Results: The overall prevalence was 16.09% for B. bovis and 33.04% for T. annulata, whereas B. bigemina was absent (0%) in the three host species. The infection rates were 24.32%, 16.67%, and 10.19% (for B. bovis), and 40.54%, 50.0%, and 20.37% (for T. annulata) in cattle, goats, and sheep, respectively. Mixed infections were prevalent in 11 (4.78%) cattle, 4 (8.33%) goats, and 7(6.48%) sheep. DNAs of six generated fragments were sequenced and recorded in the GenBank database under accession numbers MZ197893, MZ197894, and MZ197895 (for B. bovis), and MZ197896, MZ197897, and MZ197898 (for T. annulata). The sequence identity values with preserved strains in GenBank ranged from 94.1 to 100% for B. bovis and 89.9 to 100% for T. annulata, dispersing themselves across several clades in two phylogenetic trees containing sequences from other countries. Conclusions: Babesia and Theileria strains were prevalent with diverse and low rates in ruminants in Sinai.

Keywords: Babesia bovis, Theileria annulata, Phylogenetic analysis, Sequencing, Egypt.


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