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Detection of Anaplasma marginale (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae) in hemolymph of Dermacentor andersoni (Acari: Ixodidae) with the polymerase chain reaction


Detection of Anaplasma marginale (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae) in hemolymph of Dermacentor andersoni (Acari: Ixodidae) with the polymerase chain reaction



Journal of Medical Entomology 30(4): 781-788



ISSN/ISBN: 0022-2585

PMID: 8360902

DOI: 10.1093/jmedent/30.4.781

The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to detect Anaplasma marginale in hemolymph collected from live Dermacentor andersoni Stiles ticks. Hemolymph was collected from severed legs of male and female ticks exposed to A. marginale as either nymphs or adults. Heat treatment was found to be the optimum method of hemolymph preparation for PCR. Hemolymph samples were collected and pooled from adult ticks exposed as nymphs on days 0-10 of feeding on a susceptible calf. For male and female ticks exposed as adults, samples were collected as ticks fed 7 d on an infected calf, while being held 9 d between feedings, and during a second feeding of 10 d (or to repletion) when they transmitted the parasite. Hemolymph samples were collected from uninfected ticks at the same times to serve as controls. Anaplasma marginale DNA was amplified with primers BAP-2 (5'-GTATGGCACGTAGTCTTGGGATCA-3') and AL34S (5'-CAGCAG CAGCAAGACCTTCA-3'), which flank a 409-bp fragment of the A. marginale Florida isolate msp1beta gene. Infected tick hemolymph was PCR-positive for A. marginale at all collection times, including unfed adults infected as nymphs and previously unexposed adults that fed on infected calves for only 1 d. The PCR-based assay of tick hemolymph proved to be a sensitive method for identification of infected ticks, potentially without killing them; it would be well suited for identification of laboratory- or field-infected ticks that could then be used for further studies. The primers used in this assay were also found specific when tested with species of 18 different genera, and universal for 7 A. marginale isolates from diverse geographical areas of the United States.

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Accession: 008436895

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