A novel metabarcoding diagnostic tool to explore protozoan haemoparasite diversity in mammals: a proof-of-concept study using canines from the tropics
AuthorHuggins, LG; Koehler, A; Dinh, N-N; Wilcox, S; Schunack, B; Inpankaew, T; Traub, RJ
Source TitleSCIENTIFIC REPORTS
PublisherNATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
University of Melbourne Author/sTraub, Rebecca; Koehler, Anson; Huggins, Lucas; Wilcox, Stephen; Huggins, Lucas
Medical Biology (W.E.H.I.)
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsHuggins, L. G., Koehler, A., Dinh, N. -N., Wilcox, S., Schunack, B., Inpankaew, T. & Traub, R. J. (2019). A novel metabarcoding diagnostic tool to explore protozoan haemoparasite diversity in mammals: a proof-of-concept study using canines from the tropics. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, 9 (1), https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-49118-9.
Access StatusOpen Access
Open Access at PMChttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6718641
Haemoparasites are responsible for some of the most prevalent and debilitating canine illnesses across the globe, whilst also posing a significant zoonotic risk to humankind. Nowhere are the effects of such parasites more pronounced than in developing countries in the tropics where the abundance and diversity of ectoparasites that transmit these pathogens reaches its zenith. Here we describe the use of a novel next-generation sequencing (NGS) metabarcoding based approach to screen for a range of blood-borne apicomplexan and kinetoplastid parasites from populations of temple dogs in Bangkok, Thailand. Our methodology elucidated high rates of Hepatozoon canis and Babesia vogeli infection, whilst also being able to characterise co-infections. In addition, our approach was confirmed to be more sensitive than conventional endpoint PCR diagnostic methods. Two kinetoplastid infections were also detected, including one by Trypanosoma evansi, a pathogen that is rarely screened for in dogs and another by Parabodo caudatus, a poorly documented organism that has been previously reported inhabiting the urinary tract of a dog with haematuria. Such results demonstrate the power of NGS methodologies to unearth rare and unusual pathogens, especially in regions of the world where limited information on canine vector-borne haemoparasites exist.
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