Sarcocystis spp. in domestic sheep in Kunming City, China: prevalence, morphology, and molecular characteristics

Jun-Jie Hu1,2,*, Si Huang1, Tao Wen1, Gerald W. Esch3, Yu Liang1, and Hong-Liang Li1

1 School of Biological Sciences, Yunnan University, Kunming 650091, China

2 Southeast Asia Biodiversity Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Science, Yezin, Nay Pyi Taw 05282, Myanmar

3 Department of Biology, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC 27106, USA

PubYear : 2017

Volume: 24(30)

Publication Name: Parasite

Page number: 1-8 

Abstract: Sheep (Ovis aries) are intermediate hosts for at least six named species of SarcocystisS. tenella, S. arieticanisS. gigantea, S. medusiformisS. mihoensis, and S. microps. Here, only two species, S. tenella and S. arieticanis, were found in 79 of 86 sheep (91.9%) in Kunming, China, based on their morphological characteristics. Four genetic markers, i.e., 18S rRNA gene, 28S rRNA gene, mitochondrial cox1 gene, and ITS-1 region, were sequenced and characterized for the two species of Sarcocystis. Sequences of the three former markers for S. tenella shared high identities with those of S. capracanisin goats, i.e., 99.0%, 98.3%, and 93.6%, respectively; the same three marker sequences of S. arieticanis shared high identities with those of S. hircicanis in goats, i.e., 98.5%, 96.5%, and 92.5%, respectively. No sequences in GenBank were found to significantly resemble the ITS-1 regions of S. tenella and S. arieticanis. Identities of the four genetic markers for S. tenella and S. arieticanis were 96.3%, 95.4%, 82.5%, and 66.2%, respectively.

Keywords: Sheep, Sarcocystis, Prevalence, Morphology, Molecular characteristics, China