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Parasitol Res. 2005 Mar;95(4):287-92. Epub 2005 Jan 29.

Identification of strongyle eggs from anthelmintic-treated horses using a PCR-ELISA based on intergenic DNA sequences.

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  • 1Department of Veterinary Parasitology, Faculty of Veterinary Science, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, University of Liverpool, Pembroke Place, Liverpool , L3 5QA, UK.


The efficacy of five daily fenbendazole (FBZ) treatments was tested against benzimidazole-resistant cyathostomins in naturally infected horses (n=13). Horses were treated with pyrantel embonate (PYR) to remove adult strongyles followed, 7 days later, by a 5-day course of FBZ. The PYR treatment produced an average faecal egg count reduction of 98%. All samples were negative by faecal egg count 7 days after the start of the FBZ treatment. Positive egg counts were observed from 28 days after the start of FBZ treatment and all horses displayed positive faecal egg counts by 77 days after treatment. Strongyle eggs were harvested from the faeces of the horses prior to treatment and then weekly from 42 to 70 days post-treatment. DNA was obtained from eggs in groups of ten. A PCR-ELISA, based on species-specific differences in intergenic DNA sequences, was used to identify the presence of six cyathostomin species. In pre-treatment samples, Cyathostomum catinatum was detected in nine out of the 13 horses and Cylicostephanus longibursatus, Cylicostephanus goldi and Cylicocyclus nassatus, were found in samples from eight animals. Cylicocyclus ashworthi and Cylicocyclus insigne were not detected pre-treatment. After anthelmintic treatment, C. catinatum and C. longibursatus were most frequently detected, followed by C. nassatus, C. goldi and C. ashworthi. C. insigne was detected at only one time point in a sample from a single horse.

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