Molecular detection and genetic characterization of Anaplasma marginale and Anaplasma platys in cattle in Nigeria

Joshua Kamani*, Juliane Schaer, Ali G. Umar, James Y. Pilarshimwi, Laminu Bukar, Javier González-Miguel, Shimon Harrus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Bovine anaplasmosis poses serious challenge to profitable livestock production in the tropics. Accurate information on the prevalence, distribution and genetic characteristics of Anaplasma spp. infections of cattle is invaluable for the design of cost-effective control measures. Blood samples from 275 cattle in Nigeria were screened for the DNA of Anaplasma spp. using species-specific primers and nucleotide sequence analysis. The DNA of Anaplasmataceae was detected based on 16S rRNA gene in 135 out of the 275 (49.1%) individuals examined, with 31 (23.0%) and 21(15.6%) being positive for Anaplasma marginale based on msp4 and msp2 genes, respectively. DNA of Anaplasma platys was detected in 62 (45.9%) based on groEL gene and in 27 (20.0%) using the A. platys species-specific primers. Presence of Anaplasma spp. DNA was significantly associated (p = 0.011) with the breed of the animals. Anaplasma nucleotide sequences of one group of the infected samples showed high identities of 99.0 to 100% (16S rRNA gene) and 99.6% (groEL gene) with reference sequences of A. platys, while those of another group matched to A. marginale references (msp2 with 98.9% and msp4 with 99.1%). Furthermore, phylogenetic analysis clustered the nucleotide sequences in this study with A. platys and A. marginale sequences in GenBank, confirming these relationships. For the first time, this study revealed the presence of mixed haplotypes in both A. platys and A. marginale in cattle in Nigeria. More studies are needed to elucidate the epidemiology and veterinary and public health significance of Anaplasma spp. infections in cattle in Nigeria.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number101955
JournalTicks and Tick-borne Diseases
Issue number4
Early online date9 Apr 2022
StatePublished - Jul 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We are grateful to Bashir J and Balami PU for assistance during the sampling in the abattoirs. This research project did not receive any funding from private or public sources.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022

Copyright © 2022. Published by Elsevier GmbH.


  • A. marginale
  • A. platys
  • Anaplasmataceae
  • Bovine anaplasmosis
  • Cattle
  • Nigeria
  • Relative risk


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