Babesia canis canis and Babesia canis vogeli infections in dogs from northern Portugal

Luís Cardoso*, Álvaro Costa, Joana Tuna, Lisete Vieira, Osnat Eyal, Yael Yisaschar-Mekuzas, Gad Baneth

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Canine babesiosis represents an important veterinary medical problem. This study describes the molecular characterization of babesial parasites detected in eight clinically suspected dogs from northern Portugal, affected by lethargy, muscle tremors, weight loss, pale mucous membranes, hyperthermia or red-coloured urine. Microscopic examination of peripheral blood smears showed large intraerythrocytic piroplasms morphologically compatible with Babesia canis in all eight animals. DNA was extracted from blood on filter paper, and a Babesia spp. infection confirmed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of a 408 bp fragment of the 18S rRNA gene. Analysis of PCR-derived sequences revealed that seven dogs were infected with B. canis canis and one with B. canis vogeli. This is the first molecular identification report of both the species B. canis and the subspecies B. canis canis and B. canis vogeli in dogs from Portugal.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)199-204
Number of pages6
JournalVeterinary Parasitology
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2008


  • 18S rRNA gene
  • Babesia canis canis
  • Babesia canis vogeli
  • Babesiosis
  • Dog
  • Portugal


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