Studies of Naturally Infected Babesiosis and Its Effect on Some Hematological and Biochemical Parameters in Cattle in Qena, Egypt
Mohamed Saied MM*
General Organization of Veterinary Service, Egypt
Submission: September 26, 2017; Published: October 31, 2017
*Corresponding author: Mohamed Saied MM, PH.D., Veterinarian at GOVS (General Organization of Veterinary Service), Egypt,
How to cite this article: Mohamed Saied MM. Studies of Naturally Infected Babesiosis and Its Effect on Some Hematological and Biochemical Parameters in Cattle in Qena, Egypt. Dairy and Vet Sci J. 2017; 4(3): 555640. DOI: 10.19080/JDVS.2017.04.555640.
In the present study, 40 Egyptian cattle infected with babesiosis and 10 healthy (as control) were used as animal material Hematological findings that were observed with domestic animals in connection with blood parasite infections are very essential. In this study it was demonstrated that value of hematological parameters of the group, compromising infected animals, were relatively lower compared to control group parameters he infected animal showing decrease in RBC’s counts, WBC’s counts, an increase in phosphorus, decrease in calcium. Serum level of aspartame aminotransferases (AST) showed significant increase in babesiosis, while the Serum level of alanine (ALT) was significantly increased in Ababesiosis. Serum level of iron and copper suffered from babesiosis showed significant increase of both iron and copper serum levels. The aim of this study was to ascertain the effect of babesiosis on hematological parameters and several mineral levels.
Keywords:Cattle; Babesiaovis; Hematology; Mineral substances
Babesiosis is a protozoan disease, which is generally characterized with high fever (40-41°C), anorexia, weight loss, ruminal atony, dyspnoe, red water urine (haemoglobinuria) and jaundice, of sheep, goat, cattle, horse, dog, and cats. emaciation, anemia, various degrees of jaundice (icterus) from paleness in mild cases to severe yellow discoloration of conjunctiva and vaginal mucous membranes in more progress cases., The vector places itself in animal’s erythrocytes and Babesia forms can vary as pear-shaped, round and elongated.
The most common species that causes infection on cattle are in Egypt. Babesia bigemina, Babesia divergens, Babesia bovis babesia major. Two species, B. bigemina and B. bovis, have a considerable impact on cattle health and productivity in tropical and subtropical countries [1-8]. The mucous membranes are first hyperaemic, but at the later stages, they become icteric and the color changes to the pallor of anemia. Primary cause of anemia is due to intravascular haemolysis and rate of destruction of erythrocytes and capacity of erythropoiesis are the main denominators of the occurrence and intensity of the anemia [9-12].
In Egypt, bovine babesiosis is caused mainly by B. bigemina and B. bovis and considered as the most important and endemic
parasitic disease affecting cattle [8,13]. Most often owners
are trying to describe the clinical appearance of their animals using less informative symptoms, which often accompanies most diseases. Only few owners are able to describe symptoms, which could be pathognostic initially to babesiosis, and let the veterinarian to apply purposely one or more tests.
Forty (40) Egyptian cattle infected with babesiosis and ten (10) healthy (as control) were used as animal materials. Blood samples were collected from the jugular vein into EDTA-containing tubes from 50 animals (40 cattle infected and 10cattle as controls) of both sexes and aged 2-5 years, and were originating from different villages. The animals were examined at the Veterinary unit.
The control group (10 cattle) was carefully examined clinically and parasitological and found healthy and free from external, internal, and hemoparasites. Approximately 10ml of blood was taken from the jugular vein of all animals with a syringe containing EDTA. The blood samples were subjected to hematological parameters analysis [14,15].
Animals were subjected to clinical and hematological examinations at Veterinary unit. The filed-exposed group showed various degrees of bovine babesiosis such as high fever (>40 °C), anorexia, hemoglobinuria (bloody urine), anemia, and jaundice. They were also infested with ticks to various degrees.
The control group was examined thoroughly for presence of
any abnormal clinical changes and external parasites, and was
thoroughly examined by different laboratory techniques such as
direct smear, flotation, sedimentation and Barmen’s techniques
and blood film to confirm the absence of any internal parasites.
Cattle infected with B. bovis showed typical clinical signs
of babesiosis. Briefly, highly rise in body temperature (40-
41.5 °C), conjunctive and vaginal mucous membranes were
anemic and the clinical severity was ranged from paleness in
mild cases to severe yellow discoloration (icterus) in more
progressive cases, red to dark red urine (coffee-color) urine,
hemoglobin urea was common sign in cattle with severe clinical
manifestation and accelerated heart and respiratory rates.
Some cases showed nervous manifestations in advanced stages
such as in coordination and head pressing. Various degrees
of tick infestations were present around groins, horns, Intermandibular
space, and ears.
Giemsa-stained blood smears from B. bovis infected animals
showed intra-erythrocyticpiroplasms of B. bovis that were in the
form of pyri form or pear-shaped.
The mean values of RBCs, hemoglobin amount, PCV %,
WBCs, and differential leucocytes count are listed in. Briefly,
the important findings can be summarized as follows; there is
a clear significant difference in the hematological parameters
between B. bovis infected buffaloes and B. bovis infected cattle
in comparison to control group at P-value (≤ 0.01) and (≤
Tick-borne diseases have a negative effect on livestock
health . In this study, Babesia infection was confirmed
via light microscopy examination. Presence of pear shape
piroplasmsinside RBCs is confirmative of diagnosis especially in
acute stages of the disease .
The observed clinical findings in cattle with babesiosis such
as fever, dark brown to coffee urine, pale mucous membranes
with empty episcleral blood vessels with reduced appetite
could be attributed to severe haemolytic process associated
the presence of Babesia sp. inside the red blood cells [18,19]
supported this view.
Leucogram showed significant decrease (P<0.001) in total
leucocytes count and nuetrophil. Normocytic normochromic
anemia observed in cattle with babesiosis which could be
attributed to intravascular haemolysis of red blood cells 
supported this view. Insignificant changes in total leucocytic count in total leucocytes count in cattle with babesiosis, while
there was significant increase in lymphocytes and monocytes
associated with significant decrease (P<0.001) in nuetrophils.
This could be explained as the breakdown of red blood
cells by Babesia sp. [21-24]. Even in animals which recover
spontaneously, erythrocyte count, packecell volume, and
hemoglobin level continue to decline steadily after patency. Once
the parasites have been eliminated, increased hematopoiesis
occurs, evidenced by the presence of nucleated erythrocytes,
polychromasia, and anisocytosis .
Babesiosis infected cattle showed significant decrease in
calcium and increase in phosphorus levels, this agree with [26,27]
who noticed the serum changes may include increased potassium
and reduced calcium and sodium levels. Babesiosis infected
cattle showed significant increase in AST, hypoproteinemia, this
may indicate the harmful effect of toxic metabolites of Babesia
sp. on liver cells. These results were supported by . Serum
level of iron was significantly decreased (P<0.001), while copper
showed insignificant change. The drop in serum level of iron
may be due to anemia which leads to excessive withdrawal of
serum iron to be utilized for erythropoeisis. While others have
extremely high concentrations of serum iron .
Babesiosis infected cattle showed significant decrease in
protein. Our present study indicates that the serum protein and
globulin pattern was significantly altered by babesia bigemina
infection. There was a significant decrease in total protein in
serum of infected clinical cases and these in accordance with
data recorded in cattle [30,31], in calves by  and In buffaloes
Concerning the effect of Babesia bigemina infection on
activity of liver enzymes, the obtained results revealed a highly
significant increase in serum AST and ALT. These results were
I agreement with other previous studies reported by Allen
& Kuttler  Camacho et al . The increase in enzymes
activity may attribute to sever anemia that lead to hypoxic and
toxic liver damages. Also massive hemolysis may occur which in
conjunction with hypoxia may lead to hepatic cell degeneration
and glomerular dysfunction leading to increase in AST, ALT and
Bun, Allen & Kuttler, .
Babesiosis infected cattle is often only noticed at the onset
of hemoglobinuria, when the disease is far advanced. Although
therapy and transfusion will generally save an infected animal
even at an advanced stage of the disease, it may continue to be
severely debilitated for several months after recovery [25,37-
39]. Thus, for economic and animal welfare reasons, the best
option is to prevent rather than treat infections.