First detection of Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto (G1) in dogs in central Sudan
Eighty-four stray dogs shot as a part of a governmental rabies control program in two neighboring towns of central Sudan were examined for the presence of Echinococcus spp. and other intestinal helminths. Echinococcus worms were identified to species level by PCR and gene sequencing. For comparative reasons, rectal content of the necropsied dogs was examined for helminth eggs and subjected to copro-PCR for Echinococcus. At necropsy, 51.2% (43/84) of the dogs harbored Echinococcus canadensis (G6/7) worms with worm burdens ranging from 22,000 to 80,000. Dipylidiun caninum was found in 53.6% of the dogs. At coproscopy, taeniid eggs were found in 37 of the 43 dogs which were positive for Echinococcus at necropsy, but none in the 41 necropsy-negative dogs. In addition, 58% of the rectal samples contained eggs of Toxocara spp., 34.5% eggs of Trichuris spp. (34.5%), and 26% eggs of Ancylostoma caninum. Copro-PCR gave positive results for E. canadensis with 97.5% (39/40) of nonhibiting samples from the necropsy positive dogs; the one remaining dog tested positive for E. granulosus sensu stricto (G1), whose partial cox1 and nad1 sequences showed a 100% identity with various reference sequences of the G1 genotype. 100% of 38 non-inhibited samples taken from the necropsy-negative dogs were also negative in copro-PCR. This is the first study which combines prevalence and genetic identification of Echinococcus spp. in dogs of Sudan. Together with a recent report from cattle, it confirms the autochthonous presence, at low level, of E. granulosus sensu stricto in Central Sudan.
KeywordsEchinococcosis Echinococcus granulosus Echinococcus canadensis Dogs Sudan Genetic identification
The authors gratefully acknowledge financial support of the first author by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (AvH) and project support by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), grants RO3753/1-1, RO3753/1-/2-1, RO3753/1-/3-1, KE282/7-1, KE282/8-1, and KE282/9-1.
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