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Research (Published online: 22-09-2015)

12. Emergence of oriental theileriosis in cattle and its transmission through Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus in Assam, India - Parikshit Kakati, Prabhat Chandra Sarmah, Debdatta Ray, Kanta Bhattacharjee, Rajeev Kumar Sharma, Luit Moni Barkalita, Dipak Kumar Sarma, Bhaben Chandra Baishya, Pranjal Borah and Bobitha Stanley

Veterinary World, 8(9): 1099-1104



   doi: 10.14202/vetworld.2015.1099-1104


Parikshit Kakati: Department of Parasitology, College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University, Guwahati, Assam, India;

Prabhat Chandra Sarmah: Department of Parasitology, College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University, Guwahati, Assam, India;

Debdatta Ray: Division of Parasitology, Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Izatnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India;

Kanta Bhattacharjee: Department of Parasitology, College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University, Guwahati, Assam, India;

Rajeev Kumar Sharma: Department of Microbiology, College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University, Assam, India;

Luit Moni Barkalita: Department of Animal Biotechnology, College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University, Assam, India;

Dipak Kumar Sarma: Teaching Veterinary Clinical Complex, College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University, Assam, India;

Bhaben Chandra Baishya: Teaching Veterinary Clinical Complex, College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University, Assam, India;

Pranjal Borah: Goat Research Station, Burnihat, Assam Agricultural University, Assam, India;

Bobitha Stanley: Division of Parasitology, Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Izatnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India;


Received: 01-06-2015, Revised: 12-08-2015, Accepted: 20-08-2015, Published online: 22-09-2015


Corresponding author: Kanta Bhattacharjee, e-mail:

Citation: Kakati P, Sarmah PC, Ray D, Bhattacharjee K, Sharma RK, Barkalita LM, Sarma DK, Baishya BC, Borah P, Stanley B (2015) Emergence of oriental theileriosis in cattle and its transmission through Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus in Assam, India, Veterinary World 8(9): 1099-1104.

Aim: The aim of the present study was to investigate the presence of Theileria in blood samples of crossbred and indigenous adult cows raised under unorganized small scale farming system in a Babesia and Anaplasma endemic geographical area from Assam, India and to see its transmission through Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus ticks.

Materials and Methods: For the present study, 57 clinical cases of cattle suspected to be of hemoparasitic infections were taken into consideration. The parasites were identified based on morphology in giemsa stained blood smear followed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Sera samples were tested for T. annulata antibodies in plate and Dot-ELISA. PCR was also conducted in eggs of Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus tick collected from a Theileria orientalis positive animal.

Results: PCR amplified 1124, 776, and 160 bp DNA fragments of B. bigemina (64.91%),T. orientalis(21.05%) and A. marginale (14.03%), respectively. This assay further conducted in 12 T. orientalis positive blood samples with primers of Buffeli, Chitose, and Ikeda variants of T. orientalis showed 3 samples positive to Ikeda type and none for Buffeli and Chitose. Babesia bovis and Theileria annulata specific primers also did not amplify any fragment during the PCR assay of the blood samples. Further, all sera samples tested negative to T. annulata antibodies in Plate and Dot-ELISA. PCR conducted in eggs of R (B).microplus tick collected from a T. orientalis positive animal revealed presence of the parasite DNA. Gradual improvement in physical condition leading to complete recovery in 10 out of 12 T. orientalis infected clinical cases treated with buparvaquone(at 2.5mg/kg.b.wt I/M) was the feedback obtained from field veterinarians and the cattle owners.

Conclusion: The present investigation represents the first report of occurrence of T. orientalis in cattle of Assam with involvement of pathogenic Ikeda strain in clinical outbreaks and its possible natural transmission by R (B). microplus through the transovarian mode.

Keywords: Anaplasma marginale, Assam (India), Babesia bigemina, Ikeda type, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, Theileria orientalis.

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