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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Pullman, Washington » Animal Disease Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #386918

Research Project: Development of Detection and Control Strategies for Bovine Babesiosis and Equine Piroplasmosis

Location: Animal Disease Research

Title: Serological and molecular detection of Babesia caballi and Theileria equi in Mexico: A prospective study

Author
item SALINAS-ESTRELLA, ELIZABETH - Autonomous University Of Queretaro
item Ueti, Massaro
item LOBANOV, VLADIMIR - Canadian Food Inspection Agency
item CASTILLO-PAYRÓ, EVELIO - Autonomous University Of Queretaro
item LIZCANO-MATA, AMELIA - Autonomous University Of Yucatan
item BADILLA, CÉSAR - Secretariat Of Agriculture And Rural Development
item MARTÍNEZ-IBÁÑEZ, FRANCISCO - Autonomous University Of Queretaro
item MOSQUEDA, JUAN - Autonomous University Of Queretaro

Submitted to: PLoS ONE
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/20/2022
Publication Date: 3/8/2022
Citation: Salinas-Estrella, E., Ueti, M.W., Lobanov, V.A., Castillo-Payró, E., Lizcano-Mata, A., Badilla, C., Martínez-Ibáñez, F., Mosqueda, J. 2022. Serological and molecular detection of Babesia caballi and Theileria equi in Mexico: A prospective study. PLoS ONE. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0264998.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0264998

Interpretive Summary: Hemoprotozoa Babesia caballi and Theileria equi cause significant economic losses for the horse industry around the world. Ticks are responsible for transmitting these horse pathogens. In this study, we determined the distribution of Babesia caballi and Theileria equi in Mexico using serological and molecular assays. The results showed that both horse parasites that cause equine piroplasmosis are widespread in Mexico. This is the first immunomolecular report demonstrating the distribution of Babesia caballi and Theileria equi in Mexico and offers a high level of equine infection and exposure in tick-endemic areas.

Technical Abstract: Equine piroplasmosis is a disease of horses, mules, and donkeys, caused by the hemoprotozoa Babesia caballi and Theileria equi and transmitted by ticks of tropical and subtropical regions. Because the signs are not specific, the diagnosis of equine piroplasmosis is difficult. In Mexico, there is still no molecular study demonstrating both parasites in horses, where the environmental conditions are optimal for the development of the disease. In the present study, 269 equine samples were obtained from 24 locations with tropical or subtropical climates and ticks. The serum samples were analyzed by a commercial c-ELISA demonstrating a 55.7% seroprevalence for B. caballi and 68.4% for T. equi. Blood samples analyzed with nested PCR (nPCR) showed 7.8% of samples were positive for B. caballi and 78.8% were positive for T. equi. From these results, 30 samples were sequenced for T. equi and 13 for B. caballi; no differences were found, suggesting that both horse parasites that cause equine piroplasmosis are widespread in Mexico. This is the first immunomolecular study confirming Babesia caballi and Theileria equi in Mexico and shows a high level of equine infection and exposure in tick-endemic areas.