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Vet Microbiol. 2011 May 12;150(1-2):100-6. doi: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2011.01.018. Epub 2011 Jan 28.

Novel genotypes of Anaplasma bovis, "Candidatus Midichloria" sp. and Ignatzschineria sp. in the Rocky Mountain wood tick, Dermacentor andersoni.

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Department of Biology, University of Saskatchewan, 112 Science Place, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.


Bovine anaplasmosis, caused by Anaplasma marginale, is a vector-borne disease that is enzootic in many parts of the USA. Although Dermacentor andersoni, a major vector of A. marginale, occurs in Canada, the Canadian cattle herds are currently considered free of bovine anaplasmosis. There have been two outbreaks of the disease in the province of Saskatchewan, but these have been linked to the importation of infected animals. However, the distribution of bovine anaplasmosis may alter with range expansion of the vectors. The aim of the present study was to use molecular techniques to determine if Anaplasma were present in D. andersoni at a locality near its northeastern distributional limit in Saskatchewan. Nested PCR analyses of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene were conducted on the total genomic DNA of 105 individual ticks. Single strand conformation polymorphism analysis and DNA sequencing of the 11 PCR-positive amplicons revealed the presence of three species of bacteria, none of which have been previously reported in D. andersoni. Although no ticks were infected with A. marginale, a novel genotype of A. bovis was detected in eight individuals. This discovery represents the first report of A. bovis in Canada. The potential implications of this finding with respect to animal health and anaplasmosis surveillance in Canada are discussed. The other two bacterial species detected were genetically similar to "Candidatus Midichloria mitochondrii" and Ignatzschineria larvae, the latter of which has been associated with human disease in Europe. Further investigations are needed to determine the prevalence, reservoir hosts, and pathogenicity of the Canadian genotype of A. bovis.

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