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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter July 4, 2018

Screening of Cercopithifilaria bainae and Hepatozoon canis in ticks collected from dogs of Northeastern Brazil

Marcos Antônio Bezerra Santos, Lucia Oliveira de Macedo, Domenico Otranto, Carlos Alberto do Nascimento Ramos, Ana Gabriela de Oliveira do Rêgo, Alessio Giannelli, Leucio Câmara Alves, Gílcia Aparecida de Carvalho and Rafael Antonio Nascimento Ramos
From the journal Acta Parasitologica


Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato (s.l.) is one of the most widespread ixodid ticks and is a competent vector of several vector-borne pathogens of veterinary and medical concern. For instance, this tick species transmits nematodes of the genus Cercopithifilaria and protozoa of the genus Hepatozoon to carnivores, including dogs. Here we investigated the occurrence of Cercopithifilaria spp. and Hepatozoon spp. in a population of ticks collected from naturally infested dogs living in rural areas of Northeastern Brazil. From August 2016 to June 2017, 758 tick specimens (mean ticks per month = 68.9 ± 71.4) were sampled from 75 dogs (mean ticks per dog = 10.11 ± 5.2) and dissected under a stereomicroscope in order to visualize Cercopithifilaria spp. larvae and Hepatozoon spp. oocysts and sporocysts. R. sanguineus s.l. was the only species collected, peaking in September (n = 273) and decreasing in February 2017 (n = 39). Different larval stages of Cercopithifilaria bainae were identified in 7 out of 758 (0.93%) ticks. In addition, 4 specimens (0.53%) were positive for oocysts and free sporocysts of Hepatozoon canis. The identity of both species of parasites was molecularly confirmed. These results account for the predominance of R. sanguineus (s.l.) in domestic dogs from rural locations of the study area, as well as for the presence C. bainae and H. canis in these tick populations.


Authors thank Prof. Riccardo P. Lia (University of Bari) for editing Figure 1 and Iza J.P. Vilar (Federal Rural University of Pernambuco) for her technical support at laboratory analysis.


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Received: 2018-03-23
Revised: 2018-05-02
Accepted: 2018-05-04
Published Online: 2018-07-04
Published in Print: 2018-09-25

© 2018 W. Stefański Institute of Parasitology, PAS