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Open AccessArticle

Serological and Molecular Investigation of Coxiella burnetii in Small Ruminants and Ticks in Punjab, Pakistan

1
Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Gomal University, Dera Ismail Khan 29050, Pakistan
2
Department of Theriogenology, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Faisalabad 38000, Pakistan
3
Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Institute of Bacterial Infections and Zoonoses, 07743 Jena, Germany
4
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Kafrelsheik University, Kafr El-Sheik 35516, Egypt
5
Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Faisalabad 38000, Pakistan
6
Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, University of Poonch Rawalakot, Azad Kashmir 12350, Pakistan
7
Section of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, sub-campus Jhang, Jhang 35200, Pakistan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(21), 4271; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16214271
Received: 11 October 2019 / Revised: 29 October 2019 / Accepted: 31 October 2019 / Published: 4 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ticks and Tick Vectored Diseases—Biology to Society)
Coxiellosis is a zoonotic disease caused by the obligate intracellular bacterium Coxiella burnetii affecting the productive and reproductive capabilities of animals. This study was conducted to gain insight into the seroprevalence of coxiellosis in small ruminants in seven farms of the Punjab, Pakistan. Potential risk factors were assessed. In total, 1000 serum samples (500 from sheep and 500 from goats) and 163 ticks were collected from the ruminants. All these 163 ticks were merged into 55 pools (29 pools for ticks from sheep and 26 pools for ticks from goat). Serum samples were investigated using an indirect ELISA and PCR. Coxiella burnetii DNA was detected in 29 pooled seropositive samples and 11 pooled ticks by real-time qPCR. Serological analysis revealed a prevalence of 15.6% and 15.0% in sheep and goats, respectively. A significant association was found between seropositivity and different variables like district, lactational status, reproductive status, body condition and reproductive disorders. Univariate analysis showed that detection of C. burnetii DNA in tick pools was significantly associated with the presence of ticks on sheep and goats. However, a non-significant association was found for the prevalence of C. burnetii DNA in serum pools. Hence, C. burnetii infection is prevalent in small ruminants and ticks maintained at livestock farms in Punjab, Pakistan. View Full-Text
Keywords: Coxiella burnetii; Q Fever; small ruminants; ELISA; PCR; ticks Coxiella burnetii; Q Fever; small ruminants; ELISA; PCR; ticks
MDPI and ACS Style

Ullah, Q.; El-Adawy, H.; Jamil, T.; Jamil, H.; Qureshi, Z.I.; Saqib, M.; Ullah, S.; Shah, M.K.; Khan, A.Z.; Zubair, M.; Khan, I.; Mertens-Scholz, K.; Henning, K.; Neubauer, H. Serological and Molecular Investigation of Coxiella burnetii in Small Ruminants and Ticks in Punjab, Pakistan. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 4271.

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