Faecal egg counts and serum prolactin concentrations in 13 pregnant and five non-pregnant Angora goats were monitored over a period of 20 weeks. The mean weekly egg counts of pregnant goats were significantly higher (P less than 0.01) than those of non-pregnant goats. In pregnant goats the mean egg counts in the 6 week post-partum period were significantly higher (P less than 0.01) than those of 6 weeks prepartum. The mean prolactin concentration of pregnant goats during the 6 week post-partum period was significantly higher (P less than 0.01) than that of 6 weeks pre-partum. During the 6 to 3 weeks before parturition, the prolactin values generally remained low (below 100 ng ml-1). The rise in prolactin concentration started between 3 weeks and 1 week before parturition. Only in pregnant goats was there a positive linear regression between prolactin levels and faecal egg counts.
Faecal worm egg counts of goats from two farms in Penang Island, West Malaysia, were monitored over a period of 14 months. The faecal egg count pattern followed that of total rainfall. The humid tropical environment was favourable for the development of various species of trichostrongylid nematodes, namely Haemonchus contortus, Trichostrongylus spp., Oesophagostomum spp. and Cooperia spp. Generally, H. contortus was observed to be the predominant species, more so in the monsoon months of the year.
Ninety-six randomly selected farms, located throughout peninsular Malaysia, were surveyed for goat nematodes resistant to benzimidazoles (BZ). On 33 farms BZ resistance was demonstrated by means of an egg hatch assay. Haemonchus contortus was found to be the main species involved in anthelmintic resistance. There was a positive association between the frequency of anthelmintic treatments on a farm and the presence of benzimidazole resistance. To assess the value of the egg hatch assay, faecal egg count reduction (FECR) tests were also performed on 20 farms. On six farms the LD50 of thiabendazole (TBZ) was less than 0.10 micrograms ml-1 and the FECR higher than 95% and on ten farms with an LD50 TBZ of over 0.10 micrograms ml-1 a FECR of less than 95% was measured. On four farms the FECR was less than 95%, although the egg hatch assay showed LD50 TBZ values of less than 0.10 micrograms ml-1 and on two of these three farms a controlled efficacy test confirmed the presence of BZ resistant H. contortus. From these results it can be concluded that the egg hatch assay underestimated the true incidence of benzimidazole resistance. Levamisole resistance was detected with a FECR test on two of ten farms investigated.
The therapeutic and prophylactic effects of closantel on natural infections with Haemonchus contortus were studied in goats in Peninsular Malaysia. Closantel was highly effective against H. contortus, either at a subcutaneous (s.c.) injection of 5.0 mg kg-1 body weight (100%), or in an oral drench mixture with mebendazole at a dose of 10.0 mg kg-1 (99.2%), as indicated by faecal egg counts. H. contortus larvae were absent from faecal cultures for 5, 6 and 7 weeks following treatment with s.c. injections of closantel at doses of 2.5 mg kg-1, 5.0 mg kg-1 and 10.0 mg kg-1 respectively, and for 6 weeks after treatment with closantel at 10.0 mg kg-1, given orally. Through its sustained activity, closantel not only prevented reinfection with H. contortus but also caused a dramatic reduction in pasture contamination. The potential utility of closantel in the strategic control of haemonchosis in goats, and as an alternative treatment for benzimidazoles and levamisole resistant H. contortus strains, is discussed.
Faecal samples were collected from 48 randomly selected smallholder goat farms in northern Peninsular Malaysia. The nematode eggs extracted were tested for resistance to thiabendazole using the egg hatch assay technique. Thiabendazole resistance was found on 19% of farms tested.
The anthelmintic efficacy of benzimidazoles, levamisole, closantel, ivermectin and moxidectin was evaluated on an institutional farm in Malaysia using faecal egg count reduction tests, controlled slaughter trials and an in vitro egg hatch assay. The results of this study indicated simultaneous resistance of Haemonchus contortus against benzimidazoles and ivermectin and of Trichostrongylus colubriformis against benzimidazoles and levaminsole on the same farm. Moxidectin was effective against the ivermectin resistant H. contortus.
A previous study had suggested that local strains of goat trichostrongyles, comprising largely Haemonchus contortus, might have developed resistance to benzimidazole anthelmintics. A trial involving 18 goats was conducted to confirm this. There was a significant (P < 0.01) reduction in worm burdens in goats given levamisole, but this was not so for those animals given albendazole, fenbendazole, oxfendazole and mebendazole (P > 0.05).
Faecal egg counts were used to study patterns of trichostrongyle infections in sheep and goats according to season, age, pregnancy and lactation on traditional farms in west Malaysia. Haemonchus contortus and Trichostrongylus spp. were the most important strongyles in sheep and in goats, H. contortus, Trichostrongylus spp. and Oesophagostomum spp. were most prevalent. The faecal egg counts of sheep and goats were apparently not influenced by the small seasonal climatic variations. Strongyle infections were acquired at an earlier age in sheep than in goats. Mean faecal egg counts decreased from the age of 8 months onwards in sheep while in goats this occurred from 12-18 months onwards. A periparturient rise in strongyle egg counts was observed in both animal species. Haemonchus contortus was mainly responsible for this rise in faecal egg counts. The results are discussed with reference to control of gastrointestinal strongyle infections in sheep and goats.
Albendazole, oxfendazole, fenbendazole, levamisole, closantel, ivermectin and febantel were administered to sheep on four farms and their efficacy assessed by faecal egg count reduction test. High level of resistance of Haemonchus contortus was found to benzimidazoles (albendazole, oxfendazole, fenbendazole) on all farms and to febantel on the one farm where it was tested. No resistance to closantel and levamisole was observed. Resistance to ivermectin was absent on the three farms examined under this study, but has been reported on the fourth farm in earlier work. It is concluded that anthelmintic resistance to benzimidazoles and the probenzimidazole, febantel, is a serious and widespread problem in H. contortus in sheep in Malaysia.
Two groups of goats were experimentally infected with two different strains of Haemonchus contortus and compared with the controls. Group A animals were infected with a goat-derived strain (GDS) while Group B animals were infected with a sheep-derived strain (SDS). Changes in the liveweights and some blood constitutents between the two infected groups were compared. The pathogenic effects of the GDS larvae were generally more serious when compared with those of the SDS larvae.
In 3 urban areas in Selangor, Peninsular Malaysia between 1973 and 1981, blood from 4084 dogs was examined for haematozoa. The following frequencies were found: Babesia gibsoni 17.7%; microfilariae of Dirofilaria immitis 9.6%; Hepatozoon canis 1.2%; B. canis 1.1%; Ehrlichia canis 0.2%; Trypanosoma evansi 0.1%. A detailed examination of B. gibsoni infections and microfilariasis due to D. immitis with regards to monthly distribution, breed frequency, sex and age, revealed that pedigree and non-pedigree dogs were equally susceptible to Babesia and microfilariae infections.
Twelve goats were inoculated with 40,000 third-stage Haemonchus contortus larvae and two were killed on each of Days 4, 7, 11, 14, 18 and 21 after inoculation (DAI). The number of worms that established, and the site of development were recorded. More worms established in the fundic, than in the middle or pyloric thirds of the abomasum. Early development occurred within the mucosa; emergence into the lumen started between 7 and 11 days after infection. By 4 DAI, all worms had completed the third moult to the L4 stage. At 11 DAI the majority of the worms were adults. A mean of 13.2% of the female worms had eggs in their uteri at 18 DAI; by 21 DAI more than half of the female worms had eggs in their uteri. The development of H. contortus was essentially similar to that described in sheep.
Twelve goats were inoculated with 20,000 infective larvae of Trichostrongylus colubriformis and two were killed on each of Days 4, 7, 11, 14, 18 and 21 after inoculation (DAI). The number of worms that established, and the site of development were recorded. Most of the worms established within the first 3 m of the small intestine. There was little relocation or loss of nematodes after establishment. The worms started to migrate from the mucosa to the lumen 11 days after infection. At 4 DAI, 63% of the worms were still at the late L3 stage; the remainder of the worm population had completed the third moult to the L4 stage. The population at 11 DAI comprised largely young adults. When 21 DAI was reached, about 57% of the female worms had eggs in their uteri.
Anaplasma spp. infects a wide variety of wildlife and domestic animals. This study describes the identification of a novel species of Anaplasma (Candidatus Anaplasma pangolinii) from pangolins (Manis javanica) and Anaplasma bovis from wild boars (Sus scrofa) in Malaysia. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequences, Candidatus Anaplasma pangolinii is identified in a distinct branch within the family Anaplasmataceae, exhibiting the closest sequence similarity with the type strains of Anaplasma bovis (97.7%) and Anaplasma phagocytophilum (97.6%). The sequence also aligned closely (99.9%) with that of an Anaplasma spp. (strain AnAj360) detected from Amblyomma javanense ticks. The nearly full length sequence of the 16S rRNA gene derived from two wild boars in this study demonstrated the highest sequence similarity (99.7%) to the A. bovis type strain. Partial 16S rRNA gene fragments of A. bovis were also detected from a small population of Haemaphysalis bispinosa cattle ticks in this study. Our finding suggests a possible spread of two Anaplasma species in the Malaysian wildlife and ticks. The zoonotic potential of the Anaplasma species identified in this study is yet to be determined.
Vector-borne infections are persistent public health threats worldwide. In recent years, a number of mosquito-borne viruses have emerged or re-emerged to cause major disease outbreaks. Other vector-borne pathogens, however, remain understudied and much neglected especially in the developing regions of the world including Southeast Asia. In this study, the brown dog tick Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato, cat louse Felicola subrostratus, and cat fleas Ctenocephalides felis and Ctenocephalides orientis collected from free-ranging cats and dogs in Malaysia were molecularly screened for the presence of Bartonella and Rickettsia bacteria, and Dipylidium tapeworm. Our results showed the presence of Bartonella clarridgeiea, Bartonella henselae (lineage Marseille and lineage Houston-1), and Rickettsia sp. in C. felis. We also detected Rickettsia asembonensis in C. orientis and R. sanguineus s.l. Additionally, this study provides the first documentation on a potentially new species of Dipylidium infecting F. subrostratus and C. felis. Our results highlight the role of ectoparasites from free-ranging animals including cats and dogs, in harboring multiple transmissible pathogens.
A case of double infection with Brugia pahangi and Dirofilaria immitis in a clouded leopard, Neofelis nebulosa, is presented. A brief review of filarial infections in both man and wild animals, and their medical importance is discussed.
Gastrointestinal nematode infection is one of the major diseases affecting small ruminants. Although some breeds of goats are quite resistant, many breeds of goats are relatively susceptible. This study used a combined parasitological, immunological, bioinformatic and statistical approach to examine the role of goat IgA and eosinophils in protection against Teladorsagia circumcincta. Molecular modelling suggested that the transmembrane domain of the high affinity IgA receptor was dysfunctional in goats. Statistical analyses failed to find any association in naturally infected goats between high IgA or eosinophil responses and low faecal egg counts. Together these results indicate that IgA and eosinophil responses against T. circumcincta are less effective in goats than sheep.
The ultrastructure of sarcocysts of macro- and microscopic species of Sarcocystis was compared from naturally infected water buffalo from India. Grossly visible sarcocysts had walls consisting of cauliflower-like villar protrusions, typical of S. fusiformis. The sarcocyst wall of the microscopic species of Sarcocystis was 6.4 microns thick and consisted of tightly packed conical villar protrusions that were 9.6 microns long and 3.7 microns wide at the base. At approximately 3 microns above the base, the distal two-thirds of the villar protrusion became conical shaped and was bent laterally at an angle of 45 degrees to the sarcocyst surface. The granular layer beneath the villar protrusions was 0.9 microns thick. In S. levinei the granular layer was 1.9 microns thick, the villar protrusions were narrow and it had a highly undulating primary cyst wall. Whether the microscopic S. levinei-like sarcocysts of Indian and Malaysian water buffalo are distinct species of Sarcocystis will require further investigation.
Sarcocystosis in meat-producing animals is a major cause of reduced productivity in many countries, especially those that rely on agriculture. Although several diagnostic methods are available to detect sarcocystosis, many are too time-consuming for routine use in abattoirs and meat inspection centers, where large numbers of samples need to be tested. This study aimed to compare the sensitivity of the methylene blue tissue preparation, unstained tissue preparation and nested PCR in the detection of sarcocysts in tissue samples. Approximately three-fold more sarcocysts were detected in methylene blue-stained tissue compared to unstained controls (McNemar's test: P<0.01). Test sensitivity was comparable to that of the gold standard for sarcocyst detection, nested polymerase chain reaction. These results suggest that methylene blue can be used in tissue compression as a rapid, safe, and inexpensive technique for the detection of ruminant sarcocystosis in abattoirs.