The development and evaluation of a nested PCR assay for detection of Neospora caninum and Hammondia heydorni in feral mouse tissues

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Molecular and Cellular Probes, 2008, 22 (4), pp. 228 - 233
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The development of a novel nested polymerase chain reaction is described and used for detecting the presence of Neospora caninum and Hammondia heydorni DNA in DNA extracted from feral rodent tissues. A unique strategy was used for design of an assay that could be adapted for detecting DNA from more than one member of Toxoplasmatinae simultaneously with a minimal number of additional steps. The level of sensitivity described for this assay is comparable to real time-PCR and other nested PCR assays. Twenty-eight of 104 feral mice tested positive for N. caninum in at least one tissue (the brain, heart or liver) studied. In this study, eight instances are reported where the brain tested negative to N. caninum while at least one other tissue was positive. This suggests that prior studies, which screened only the brain, describe prevalence levels that are under-represented. None of 54 mouse brains tested positive for H. heydorni DNA. This suggests that mice are rarely infected by H. heydorni although this hypothesis needs to be explored further. Data obtained in the current study suggest that N. caninum is a common parasite of feral rodents which may be important in the epidemiology of the disease. © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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