Comparative Clinical Pathology

, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 249–252 | Cite as

Molecular investigation of Lawsonia intracellularis in diarrheic and healthy captive ostriches (Struthio camelus) in Iran

  • Alireza Koochakzadeh
  • Taghi Zahraei Salehi
  • Peyman Dehghan Rahimabadi
  • Mahdi Askari BadoueiEmail author
  • Patrick Joseph Blackall
  • Hamidreza Zarepour
Original Article


Lawsonia intracellularis is the causative agent of proliferative enteropathy (PE) in pigs, a disease of economic importance worldwide. The present study aimed to investigate the occurrence of L. intracellularis in ostriches using a sensitive and specific nested polymerase chain reaction (nested PCR). A total number of 112 fecal samples (64 healthy, 48 diarrheic) were collected from 11 ostrich farms located in four provinces in Iran (Semnan, Tehran, Gilan, Yazd). The results showed the presence of L. intracellularis in three diarrheic and four apparently healthy birds. The frequency of positive results was the same in both groups (6.25% healthy vs. 6.25% diarrheic). Although the results of this study did not reveal any relationship between this organism and diarrhea (P > 0.05), the molecular detection of L. intracellularis on a farm where birds were suffering from the typical clinical symptoms of PE highlights the need for evaluation of PE in ratites.


Lawsonia intracellularis Ostrich Diarrhea Nested PCR 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest to declare.

Ethical approval

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed. This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.

Informed consent

Since there was no human participant in this study, no consent was necessary. The name of ostrich farms kept private for ethical reasons.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Ltd., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineUniversity of TehranTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineUniversity of TehranTehranIran
  3. 3.Department of Pathobiology, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineFerdowsi University of MashhadMashhadIran
  4. 4.Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food InnovationThe University of QueenslandSt. LuciaAustralia
  5. 5.Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, Garmsar BranchIslamic Azad UniversityGarmsarIran

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