Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Acta Parasitologica

IMPACT FACTOR 2017: 1.039
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 1.121

CiteScore 2017: 1.17

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.641
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.738

More options …
Volume 63, Issue 4


First molecular detection and phylogenetic analysis of Neospora caninum DNA from naturally infected goats in Northwest Tunisia

Yosra Amdouni
  • Corresponding author
  • Laboratoire de Parasitologie, Univ. Manouba, Institution de la Recherche et de l’Enseignement Supérieur Agricoles, École Nationale de Médecine Vétérinaire de Sidi Thabet, 2020 Sidi Thabet, Tunisia
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Safa Amairia
  • Laboratoire de Parasitologie, Univ. Manouba, Institution de la Recherche et de l’Enseignement Supérieur Agricoles, École Nationale de Médecine Vétérinaire de Sidi Thabet, 2020 Sidi Thabet, Tunisia
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Yousra Said
  • Laboratoire de Parasitologie, Univ. Manouba, Institution de la Recherche et de l’Enseignement Supérieur Agricoles, École Nationale de Médecine Vétérinaire de Sidi Thabet, 2020 Sidi Thabet, Tunisia
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Sofia Awadi / Mohamed Gharbi
  • Laboratoire de Parasitologie, Univ. Manouba, Institution de la Recherche et de l’Enseignement Supérieur Agricoles, École Nationale de Médecine Vétérinaire de Sidi Thabet, 2020 Sidi Thabet, Tunisia
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2018-10-18 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ap-2018-0083


Neospora caninum is an intracellular protozoan parasite from the phylum Apicomplexa, mainly associated with abortions and causing enormous economic losses. We aimed, by the present study, to estimate the molecular prevalence and phylogenetic analyses of natural infection with N. caninum in Tunisian goats. A total number of 121 meat samples were collected from slaughtered goats in the regional slaughterhouse of Béja (Northwest Tunisia) and tested from N. caninum ITS1 gene using PCR followed by sequencing of PCR products. Phylogenetic analyses were used to identify this parasite infecting goats in Nortwest Tunisia. The overall molecular prevalence was 19% (23/121). The highest molecular prevalence of N. caninum was observed in goats aged between 2 and 4 years (31.9 ± 13.27%) (P = 0.004). There was no difference in the overall molecular prevalence of N. caninum according to both localities and animal breeds. Comparison of the partial sequences of the ITS1 gene revealed 99–100% similarity with GenBank sequences. A high similarity with all the blasted genotypes was reported for N. caninum sequences. This is the first molecular study and genetic characterisation of N. caninum in North African goats.

Keywords: Neospora caninum; Tunisian goats’; meat samples; molecular identification; PCRs


  • Abo-Shehada M.N., Abu-Halaweh M.M. 2010. Flock-level seroprevalence of, and risk factors for, Neospora caninum among sheep and goats in northern Jordan. Preventive Veterinary Medicine, 93, 25–32. CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Altbuch J.A., Schofield M.J., Porter C.A., Gavin W.G. 2012. Neospora caninum: A successful testing and eradication program in a dairy goat herd. Small Ruminant Research, 105, 341–344. CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Ancelle T. 2006. Statistique – épidémiologie. Paris, MALOINE; 2ème édition. 300, 197–199. (In Franch)Google Scholar

  • Barr B.C., Anderson M.L., Woods L.W., Dubey J.P., Conrad P.A. 1992. Neospora-Like protozoal infections associated with abortion in goats. Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation, 4, 365–367. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Buxton, D., Maley, S.W., Wright, S., Thomson, K.M., Rae, A.G., Innes, E.A., 1998. The pathogenesis of experimental neosporosis in pregnant sheep. Journal of Comparative Pathology, 118, 267– 279. CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Cole R.A., Lindsay D.S., Dubey J.P., Blagburn B.L. 1993. Detection of Neospora caninum in tissue sections using a murine monoclonal antibody. Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation, 5, 579–584. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Czopowicz M., Kaba J., Szaluś-Jordanow O., Nowicki M., Witkowski L., Frymus T. 2011. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum infections in goats in Poland. Veterinary Parasitology, 178, 339–341. CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Donahoe S.L., Lindsay S.A., Krockenberger M., Phalen D., Šlapeta J. 2015. A review of neosporosis and pathologic findings of Neospora caninum infection in wildlife. International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife, 4, 216–238. CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Dubey J.P., Morales J.A., Villalobos P., Lindsay D.S., Blagburn B.L., Topper M.J. 1996. Neosporosis-associated abortion in a dairy goat. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 208, 263–267Google Scholar

  • Dubey J.P., Schares G. 2011. Neosporosis in animals-The last five years. Veterinary Parasitology, 180, 90–108. CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Dubey J.P., Schares G., Ortega-Mora L.M. 2007. Epidemiology and control of neosporosis and Neospora caninum. Clinical Microbiology Reviews, 20, 323–367. CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Faria E.B., Gennari S.M., Pena H.F.J., Athayde A.C.R., Silva M.L.C.R., Azevedo S.S. 2007. Prevalence of anti-Toxoplasma gondii and anti-Neospora caninum antibodies in goats slaughtered in the public slaughterhouse of Patos city, Paraíba State, Northeast region of Brazil. Veterinary Parasitology, 149, 126– 129. CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Ghattof H.H., Faraj A.A. 2015. Original research article seroprevalence of Neospora caninum in goats in Wasit Province Iraq. International Journal of Current Microbiology and Applied Science, 4, 182–191Google Scholar

  • Hall C.A., Reichel M.P., Ellis J.T. 2005. Neospora abortions in dairy cattle: Diagnosis, mode of transmission and control. Veterinary Parasitology, 128, 231–241. CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Iovu A., Györke A., Mircean V., Gavrea R., Cozma V. 2012. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum in dairy goats from Romania. Veterinary Parasitology, 186, 470–474. CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Liu Z.K., Li J.Y., Pan H. 2015. Seroprevalence and risk factors of Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum infections in small ruminants in China. Preventive Veterinary Medicine, 118, 488–492. CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Lindsay D. S., Rippey N. S., Powe T. A., Sartin E. A., Dubey J. P. Blagburn B. L. 1995. Abortions, fetal death, and stillbirths in pregnant pygmy goats inoculated with tachyzoites of Neospora caninum. American Journal of Veterinary Research, 56, 1176–1256PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Lobato J., Silva D. a O., Mineo T.W.P., Amaral D.H.F., Segundo G.R.S., Julia M., et al. 2006. Detection of immunoglobulin g antibodies to Neospora caninum in humans: High seropositivity rates in patients who are infected by human immunodeficiency virus or have neurological disorders. Clinical Vaccine Immunology, 13, 84–89. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Mesquita L.P., Nogueira C.I., Costa R.C., Orlando D.R., Bruhn F.R.P., Lopes P.F.R., et al. 2013. Antibody kinetics in goats and conceptuses naturally infected with Neospora caninum. Veterinary Parasitology, 196, 327–333. CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Naguleswaran A., Hemphill A., Rajapakse R.P.V.J., Sager H. 2004. Elaboration of a crude antigen ELISA for serodiagnosis of caprine neosporosis: Validation of the test by detection of Neospora caninum-specific antibodies in goats from Sri Lanka. Veterinary Parasitology, 126, 257–262. CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Nakagaki K.Y.R., Abreu C.C., Costa R.C., Orlando D.R., Freire L.R., Bruhn F.R.P., et al. 2016. Lesions and distribution of Neospora caninum in tissues of naturally infected female goats. Small Ruminant Research, 140, 57–62. CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Nogareda C., López-Gatius F., Santolaria P., García-Ispierto I., BechSàbat G., Pabón M., et al. 2007. Dynamics of anti-Neospora caninum antibodies during gestation in chronically infected dairy cows. Veterinary Parasitology, 148, 193–199. CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Paré J., Thurmond M.C., Hietala S.K. 1997. Neospora caninum antibodies in cows during pregnancy as a predictor of congenital infection and abortion. Journal of Parasitology, 83, 82–87. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Paré J., Thurmond M.C., Hietala S.K. 1996. Congenital Neospora caninum infection in dairy cattle and associated calfhood mortality. Canadian Journal of Veterinary Research, 60, 133–139.Google Scholar

  • Silva M.S.A., Uzêda R.S., Costa K.S., Santos S.L., Macedo A.C.C., Abe-Sandes K., Gondim L.F.P. 2009. Detection of Hammondia heydorni and related coccidia (Neospora caninum and Toxoplasma gondii) in goats slaughtered in Bahia, Brazil. Veterinary Parasitology, 162, 156–159. CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Stenlund S., Kindahl H., Magnusson U., Uggla A., Björkman C. 1999. Serum antibody profile and reproductive performance during two consecutive pregnancies of cows naturally infected with Neospora caninum. Veterinary Parasitology, 85, 227– 234. CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Şuteu O., Paştiu A., Györke A., Avram E., Cozma V. 2013. Molecular detection of Neospora caninum in slaughtered goat kids from Romania. Scientica Parasitologica, 14, 43–46Google Scholar

  • Schwartz D. 1993. Méthodes statistiques à l’usage des médecins et des biologistes, 3ème éd, Flammarion: Paris, France. 1993, 83, 170–181Google Scholar

  • Tranas J., Heinzen R. A, Weiss L.M., McAllister M.M. 1999. Serological evidence of human infection with the protozoan Neospora caninum. Clinical and Diagnostic Laboratory Immunology, 6, 765–767PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Tamura K., Peterson D., Peterson N., Stecher G., Nei M., Kumar S., 2011. MEGA5: molecular evolutionary genetics analysis using maximum likelihood, evolutionary distance, and maximum parsimony methods. Molecular Biology and Evolution, 28, 2731–2739. CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • Wang Y., Tian R.M., Gao Z.M., Bougouffa S., Qian P.Y. 2014. Optimal eukaryotic 18S and universal 16S/18S ribosomal RNA primers and their application in a study of symbiosis. PLoS One 9. CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Zhou M., Cao S., Sevinc F., Sevinc M., Ceylan O., Liu M., et al. 20116. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays using recombinant TgSAG2 and NcSAG1 to detect Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum-specific antibodies in domestic animals in Turkey. Journal of Veterinary Medical Science. 78, 1877–1881. CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

About the article

Received: 2017-10-24

Revised: 2018-05-08

Accepted: 2018-06-28

Published Online: 2018-10-18

Published in Print: 2018-12-19

Conflict of interest statement. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interests.

Citation Information: Acta Parasitologica, Volume 63, Issue 4, Pages 709–714, ISSN (Online) 1896-1851, ISSN (Print) 1230-2821, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ap-2018-0083.

Export Citation

© 2018 W. Stefański Institute of Parasitology, PAS.Get Permission

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in