Low prevalence of Babesia hongkongensis infection in community and privately-owned cats in Hong Kong

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Author(s)

  • Y. R. Choi
  • T. L. Leung
  • D. Hernandez Muguiro
  • F. M. Woodhouse
  • J. J. Gray

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Article number102278
Journal / PublicationTicks and Tick-borne Diseases
Volume15
Issue number1
Online published16 Nov 2023
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024

Link(s)

Abstract

Domestic cats are susceptible to infection with at least 11 species of Babesia. In Hong Kong, where dogs are commonly infected with B. gibsoni, a single infection in a cat by a novel species, B. hongkongensis, was reported previously. The aim of this study was to investigate the frequency of Babesia spp. detection in cats in Hong Kong. Residual blood-derived DNA from healthy free-roaming community cats (n = 239), and privately-owned cats with and without anaemia undergoing diagnostic investigations (n = 125) was tested for Babesia spp. DNA using a pan-Babesia PCR targeting mitochondrial Cytochrome B, and a B. hongkongensis specific PCR targeting 18S rRNA. Positive samples were confirmed by sequencing and comparative sequence analysis against the GenBank nucleotide database. Babesia hongkongensis was detected in 4/239 (1.7 %) community cats, and 0/125 (0.0 %) privately-owned cats. Babesia gibsoni was detected in 0/239 community cats and 1/125 (0.8 %) privately-owned cats. Cats infected with B. hongkongensis were clinically healthy at the time of sampling. The B. gibsoni-infected cat was anaemic and thrombocytopenic. Cats in Hong Kong can be infected with B. hongkongensis and B. gibsoni, albeit at low frequency. The tick vector for B. hongkongensis is yet to be identified. © 2023 The Author(s)

Research Area(s)

  • Babesia, Feline babesiosis, Prevalence, Tick fever, Tick-borne infection

Citation Format(s)

Low prevalence of Babesia hongkongensis infection in community and privately-owned cats in Hong Kong. / Almendros, A.; Choi, Y. R.; Leung, T. L. et al.
In: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases, Vol. 15, No. 1, 102278, 01.2024.

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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