Molecular characterization of anaplasma SPP. in cattle and sable antelope from Lusaka and North-Western provinces of Zambia.

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Mwale, Rhodasi
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The University of Zambia
Rickettsiales of the genus Anaplasma are globally distributed tick-borne pathogens of animals and humans with complex epidemiological cycles involving ticks and vertebrate hosts. This study aimed to detect and characterize Anaplasma species present in Zambia with a focus on the infection risk posed by the translocation of sable antelope (Hippotragus niger) from North Western Province to Lusaka Province. The study utilized archived DNA samples from cattle (Chongwe District) and sable antelope (Kasonso Busanga). Additionally, a knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) survey was conducted in Chongwe District to contextualize the possibility of spill-over of Anaplasma from introducing wild ruminants to a low prevalence area. From the one-hundred samples examined, Anaplasma species were detected by DNA sequencing in 7% (4/53) of cattle samples and 23.25% (10/47) of sable samples. A.marginale (4), was detected in both cattle and sable while A.ovis (7) and A.platys (2) were detected from sable antelope only. The knowledge, attitudes and practices survey determined that the awareness of anaplasmosis among farmers was moderately low (43%). This may be a consequence of low prevalence of Anaplasma in cattle in Chongwe. Phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA partial gene sequence revealed that A.ovis and A.marginale samples were likely genetically related regardless of the host i.e 100% and 96.9% bootstrap support, respectively. This suggests a likelihood of transmissibility between sable and cattle.This study postulates that the introduction of sable antelope infected with multiple Anaplasma species poses a risk to animals and humans in Chongwe District. Keywords: tick-borne diseases, Anaplasma species in cattle, Anaplasma species in wildlife, molecular epidemiology
Tick-borne diseases , Anaplasma species. , Bacteriology. , Infectious diseases. , Rickettsiales. , Tick-borne diseases in animals.