FIRST MOLECULAR CHARACTERIZATION OF Hepatozoon canis

FIRST MOLECULAR CHARACTERIZATION OF Hepatozoon canis IN DOGS IN CEBU CITY, PHILIPPINES

Thursday, June 2, 2016, 3:45 PM – 4:15 PM

Maxfrancis G. Talle1, 2, Adrian P. Ybañez2, 3, 4, Laila Monila Belarmino2, Lyra Lee Arnado2, Rochelle Haidee D. Ybañez3, Mingming Liu5 and Xuenan Xuan5

1   Department of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Cebu Technological University, Barili, Cebu Philippines

2   College of Veterinary Medicine, Southwestern University, Urgello, Cebu City, Philippines

3   Biology and Environmental Studies Program, Sciences Cluster, University of the Philippines Cebu, Lahug, Cebu City, Philippines

4   Gullas College of Medicine, University of the Visayas, Banilad, Cebu City, Philippines

5   National Research Center for Protozoan Diseases, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Obihiro City, Hokkaido, Japan

Correspondence: maxfrancistalle@gmail.com

Hepatozoon canis is a canine pathogen transmitted through the ingestion of the Rhipicephalus sanguineus tick. It is known to infect the neutrophils and several organs, including the liver and spleen, causing lethargy and anemia. In the Philippines, only 3 reports from the northern area with no molecular sequence confirmation have been published. This study reports the clinical observations of 4 cases of H. canis infections (out of 100 dogs tested using an 18S rRNA screening PCR and DNA sequencing) in Cebu, Philippines. Infected dogs exhibited lethargy, paleness of the mucous membrane, tick infestation, anemia and thrombocytopenia. Obtained sequences (1672 bp) were found closest (99.8% identities) to registered sequences from Israel and Spain. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that Philippine strains clustered with the other countries. This study is the first report on the specific molecular characterization of Hepatozoon canis in the Philippines.

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