Variation in disease phenotype is marked in equine trypanosomiasis

Parasites & Vectors
Alexandra G RafteryDavid G M Sutton


Equine trypanosomiasis is a severe and prevalent disease that has the greatest impact globally upon working equids due to its distribution across lower income countries. Morbidity and mortality rates are high; disease management strategies in endemic regions are ineffective and cost prohibitive. Individual variation in disease phenotype in other species suggests host factors could reveal novel treatment and control targets but has not been investigated in equids. A prospective clinical evaluation of equines presenting for a free veterinary examination was performed in hyperendemic villages in The Gambia. Age, body condition score and body weight were estimated by validated methods, and haematocrit and total protein concentration measured. Animals fulfilling 2 out of 5 clinical inclusion criteria (anaemia, poor body condition, pyrexia, history of abortion, oedema) for a diagnosis of trypanosomiasis received trypanocidal treatment with follow-up at 1 and 2 weeks. Blood samples underwent PCR analysis with specific Trypanosoma spp. primers and results were compared to the subject's clinical and clinicopathological features. A mixed effects generalised linear model was generated to evaluate the association of infection status with d...Continue Reading


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