The direct immunological diagnosis of
parasite antigens in host tissues are still missing. Babesia was first
identified on thin blood smears of infected cattle by Babes (Mosqueda et al.
2012). Now a days,
nucleic acid identification and amplification is proved to be the most
sensitive and reliable technique for the detection of Babesia (Mosqueda et al.
2012). The acute stage of the disease can be demonstrated by the
presence of parasites inside the erythrocytes. However, animals affected
chronically where a subclinical form of the disease occurs, this method is
useless and other, more sophisticated methods must be employed. The use of PCR-based assays for
detection of babesiosis and its
characteristics of high sensitivity and speci?city have been veri?ed (Oliveira-Sequeira et al. 2005).
PCR has been documented 100% sensitive for Babesia parasite detection (Schaaschmidt
et al. 2006). Appropriate gene marker is required for molecular detection. The
frequently used markers for Babesia diagnosis are 18S rRNA, Beta-tubulin
protein and Heat Shock Proteins (HSP-70)(Caccio et al. 2000). Virulence, prognosis
and response to medicines in case of bovine babesiosis is species related.
Babesiosis can be detected by microscopy which is considered to be
a gold standard but it lacks sensitivity (Bashiruddin et al. 1999).
Babesiosis can be detected via Immunoflorescent Assay Technique (IFAT) and
Enzyme linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) in carrier animals but suffer drawbacks of cross-reaction between B.bigemina
and B.bovis and cannot differentiate between past and present infection (Choopa. 2016). However,
presently many molecular techniques have
been developed that can detect and differentiate various species of Babesia in
carrier and infected animals (Choopa. 2016).
Ticks are known for their negative impact on livestock
and human health through infestation and are capable of spreading a wide range
of pathogens including protozoans, viruses, and bacteria such as the
spirochetes and rickettsiae. Rhipicephalus,
and Ornithodoros, which
are widely distributed throughout Pakistan, are the main tick genera infesting
humans and animals. The cattle tick Rhipicephalus microplus is a competent
vector of B. bovis, B. bigemina,
and A. marginale, which
cause tick fever in Pakistan and the rest of the world(Karim et al. 2017). Hyalomma
species are known vectors of T.
point prevalence of Babesiosis in Buffalo, Cattle, Sheep, Goat, Equine and
Camel is 36.05%, 9.97%, 13.92%, 10.99%, 50.56% and 8.33% respectively(Sahib et
is one of the most important tick transmitted diseases worldwide. Babesiosis is caused by the protozoan parasites. The Genus
Babesia include more than one hundred species, widespread in nature and
infecting a large range of cultivated and wild cattle (National Academies of Sciences et al.
has worldwide importance due to wide distribution of large range of host tick
vectors. This ubiquitous parasite primarily infects the host erythrocytes. Babesia
is the second most important blood parasite of mammalians next to trypanosomes (Scnittger
et al. 2013). B. bovis and B. bigemina belong to the genus Babesia. Amid a
variety of species, B.bigemina is the most pervasive specie infecting cattle
in hot and mild-hot regions of the world.
The livestock sector bear huge losses which are attributed by cattle
mortality, ill-thrift, loss of milk and meat production, draft power, cost on
control measures, and also through its impact on international cattle trade in
Pakistan (Bhat et al. 2015). Ticks and
Tick borne diseases cause substantial economic losses in different livestock
species by reducing productivity and fertility, and sometimes causing deaths. Tick
borne diseases and tick cause an estimated US$ 13.9 to 18.7 billion loss and an
annual shortfall of approximately 3 billion pieces of hide in cattle(Karim et al. 2017). The global economic
production losses by ticks are about 14-19 billion per year (De Castro et al. 1993). Out of 12 billion cattle
over 500 million cattle are at potential risk of being infected by Babesiosis (Dantas-Torres et
al. 2012) . Recently, studies in Australia and India
have also estimated annual losses at $26 million and $499 million , respectively (Bhat et al. 2015).