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Molecular and serological surveillance of equine piroplasmosis in the Republic of Korea between 2016 and 2017
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  • Hyun-Ji Seo,
  • Keun-Ho Kim,
  • Sang Kyu Lee,
  • Subin Min,
  • Ji-Yeon Lim,
  • Sun-Joo Yang,
  • Mi-Sun Yoo,
  • Sukchan Jung,
  • Soon-Seek Yoon,
  • Yun Sang Cho
Hyun-Ji Seo
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Keun-Ho Kim
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Sang Kyu Lee
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Ji-Yeon Lim
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Sun-Joo Yang
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Mi-Sun Yoo
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Sukchan Jung
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Soon-Seek Yoon
QIA
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Yun Sang Cho
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Abstract

Equine piroplasmosis (EP), a tick-borne disease affecting horses, is caused by Babesia caballi and Theileria equi. We investigate antigen and antibody of EP in whole bloods and sera of horses in the Republic of Korea during 2016-2017. We collected 1,650 whole bloods and sera of horses in 16 regions and 222 farms to examine antigen and antibody of EP by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of 18S rRNA gene and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), respectively. T. equi antigen and antibody was detected in 1 of 1,650 samples (0.06%). Phylogenetic analysis of 18S rRNA revealed that T. equi was highly homologous with the strains from China, Mongolia, or Spain. At EP-positive ranch, 52 and 10 ticks were collected in 2016 and 2017, respectively. All of them were identified as Haemaphysalis longicornis, but EP pathogens were not detected from the collected ticks. From 1,650 whole bloods, 2 of Theileria spp. were also detected and highly homologous with T. buffeli, T. luwehshuni, and T. orientalis group. EP infectious status was very low in Korea, and routine surveillance should be needed to attain the free status of EP in Korea.