Molecular Detection of Anaplasma and Ehrlichia Infection in Ticks in Borderline of Iran-Afghanistan


Anaplasmosis, a disease caused by various species of Anaplasma, poses important economic constraints to animal breeders. Ehrlichiosis is a worldwide zoonosis illness and mostly occurs in tropical and subtropical regions that are close to the vector’s distribution. Tick-borne pathogens lead to over 100,000 cases of illness in the world each year. Besides the costs of the additional veterinary care, anaplasmosis causes abortion in animals, reduction of milk production, body weight, and frequently leads to death. In this study, we investigated on infection of ticks to Anaplasma and Ehrlichia pathogens in Zabol and Zahak County in Sistan and Baluchestan Province where is bordered with Afghanistan. Totally from June 2013 to May 2014, 369 ticks were caught from goats, cows and sheep. Molecular studies on 53 of these samples which represented all specimens, showed that Ehrlichias DNA and Anaplasma’s DNA was found in 14 (26.4%) out of the 53 selected specimens. The results showed the infection of Rhipicephalus sanguineus and Hyalomma anatolicum with Anaplasma ovis. Also we saw infection of H. anatolicum and H. asiaticum ticks to Ehrlichia spp. This study has been intended to do a comprehensive survey of Ehrlichia and Anaplasma distribution in ticks caught from east of Iran; it was designed to investigate the presence of Anaplasma spp. and Ehrlichia spp. in Zabol and Zahak Counties, Iran. These results show that these pathogens should be controlled in such regions.

Share and Cite:

Jafarbekloo, A. , Bakhshi, H. , Faghihi, F. , Telmadarraiy, Z. , Khazeni, A. , Oshaghi, M. , Ramzgouyan, M. and Sedaghat, M. (2014) Molecular Detection of Anaplasma and Ehrlichia Infection in Ticks in Borderline of Iran-Afghanistan. Journal of Biomedical Science and Engineering, 7, 919-926. doi: 10.4236/jbise.2014.711089.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] Parola, P. and Raoult, D. (2001) Ticks and Tickborne Bacterial Diseases in Humans: An Emerging Infectious Threat. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 32, 897-928.
[2] Telmadarraiy, Z., Bahrami, A. and Vatandoost, H. (2004) A Survey on Fauna of Ticks in West Azerbaijan Province, Iran. Iranian Journal of Public Health, 33, 65-69.
[3] Telmadarraiy, Z., et al. (2005) A Survey of Crimean-Congo Haemorrhagic Fever in Livestock and Ticks in Ardabil Province, Iran during 2004-2005. Scandinavian Journal of Infectious Diseases, 42, 137-141.
[4] Telmadarraiy, Z., et al. (2010) Hard Ticks on Domestic Ruminants and Their Seasonal Population Dynamics in Yazd Province, Iran. Iranian Journal of Arthropod-Borne Diseases, 4, 66.
[5] Munderloh, U.G., Jauron, S.D. and Kurtti, T.J. (2005) The Tick: A Different Kind of Host for Human Pathogens. In: Goodman, J.L., Dennis, D.T. and Sonenshine, D.E., Eds., Tick-Borne Diseases of Humans, ASM Press, Washington DC, 37-64.
[6] Dantas-Torres, F. (2008) The Brown Dog Tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Latreille, 1806) (Acari: Ixodidae): From Taxonomy to Control. Veterinary Parasitology, 152, 173-185.
[7] Perez, M., et al. (2006) Human Infection with Ehrlichia canis Accompanied by Clinical Signs in Venezuela. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1078, 110-117.
[8] Stuen, S., Nevland, S. and Moum, T. (2003) Fatal Cases of Tick-Borne Fever (TBF) in Sheep Caused by Several 16S rRNA Gene Variants of Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 990, 433-434.
[9] Dumler, J.S., et al. (2001) Reorganization of Genera in the Families Rickettsiaceae and Anaplasmataceae in the Order Rickettsiales: Unification of Some Species of Ehrlichia with Anaplasma, Cowdria with Ehrlichia and Ehrlichia with Neorickettsia, Descriptions of Six New Species Combinations and Designation of Ehrlichia equi and’HGE agent’as Subjective Synonyms of Ehrlichia phagocytophila. International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology, 51, 2145-2165.
[10] Splitter, E., Anthony, H. and Twiehaus, M. (1956) Anaplasma ovis in the United States; Experimental Studies with Sheep and Goats. American Journal of Veterinary Research, 17, 487.
[11] Uilenberg, G. (1993) Other Ehrlichiosis of Ruminants. In: Woldehiwet, Z. and Ristic, M., Eds., Rickettsial and Chlamydial Diseases of Domestic Animals, Oxford Pergamon Press, Oxford, 293-332.
[12] Kuttler, K. (1966) Clinical and Hematologic Comparison of Anaplasma marginale and Anaplasma centrale Infections in Cattle. American Journal of Veterinary Research, 27, 941-946.
[13] Goethert, H.K. and Telford, S.R. (2003) Enzootic Transmission of Anaplasma bovis in Nantucket Cottontail Rabbits. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 41, 3744-3747.
[14] Stafford, K.C. (2007) Tick Management Handbook: An Integrated Guide for Homeowners, Pest Control Operators, and Public Health Officials for the Prevention of Tick-Associated Disease. Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, New Haven.
[15] Razmi, G., Dastjerdi, K., Hossieni, H., Naghibi, A., Barati, F. and Aslani, M.R. (2006) An Epidemiological Study on Anaplasma Infection in Cattle, Sheep, and Goats in Mashhad Suburb, Khorasan Province, Iran. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1078, 479-481.
[16] Bashiribod, H., Kazemi, B., Eslami, G., Bigdeli, S., Bandehpour, M., Rahbarian, N., et al. (2004) First Molecular Detection of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Ixodes ricinus Ticks in Iran. Journal of Medical Sciences, 4, 282-286.
[17] Hosseini-Vasoukolaei, N., Oshaghi, M.A., Shayan, P., Vatandoost, H., Babamahmoudi, F., Yaghoobi-Ershadi, M.R., et al. (2014) Anaplasma Infection in Ticks, Livestock and Human in Ghaemshahr, Mazandaran Province, Iran. Journal of Arthropod-Borne Diseases, 8, 204.
[18] Khazeni, A., Telmadarraiy, Z., Oshaghi, M.A., Mohebali, M., Zarei, Z. and Abtahi, S.M. (2013) Molecular Detection of Ehrlichia canis in Ticks Population Collected on Dogs in Meshkin-Shahr, Ardebil Province, Iran. Journal of Biomedical Science and Engineering, 6, 1-5.
[19] Spitalska, E., Namavari, M.M., Hosseini, M.H., Shad-Del, F., Amrabadi, O.R. and Sparagano, O.A.E. (2005) Molecular Surveillance of Tick-Borne Diseases in Iranian Small Ruminants. Small Ruminant Research, 57, 245-248.
[20] Janbakhsh, B. (1957) A Research Review about Ticks Responsible for Relapsing Fever in Iran. Journal of Faculty of Health and Institute of Public Health and Research, 484, 223-230.
[21] Walker, A.R., Bouattour, A., Camicas, J.L., Estrada-Pena, A., Horak, I.G., Latif, A.A., et al. (2003) Ticks of Domestic Animals in Africa: A Guide to Identification of Species. Bioscience Reports, Edinburgh.
[22] Faria, J.L.M., Dagnone, A.S., Munhoz, T.D., Joao, C.F., Pereira, W.A.B., Machado, R.Z., et al. (2010) Ehrlichia canis Morulae and DNA Detection in Whole Blood and Spleen Aspiration Samples. Revista Brasileira de Parasitologia Veterinária, 19, 98-102.
[23] Rar, V.A., Fomenko, N.V., Dobrotvorsky, A.K., Livanova, N.N., Rudakova, S.A., Fedorov, E.G., et al. (2005) Tickborne Pathogen Detection, Western Siberia, Russia. Emerging Infectious Disease, 11, 1708-1715.
[24] Haff, L.A. (1994) Improved Quantitative PCR Using Nested Primers. Genome Research, 3, 332-337.
[25] Kramer, V.L., Randolph, M.P., Hui, L.T., Irwin, W.E., Gutierrez, A.G. and Vugia, D.J. (1999) Detection of the Agents of Human Ehrlichioses in Ixodid Ticks from California. The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 60, 62-65.
[26] Cao, W.C., Gao, Y.M., Zhang, P.H., Zhang, X.T., Dai, Q.H., Dumler, J.S., et al. (2000) Identification of Ehrlichia chaffeensis by Nested PCR in Ticks from Southern China. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 38, 2778-2780.
[27] Rahbari, S., Nabian, S. and Shayan, P. (2007) Primary Report on Distribution of Tick Fauna in Iran. Parasitology Research, 101, 175-177.
[28] Satta, G., Chisu, V., Cabras, P., Fois, F. and Masala, G. (2011) Pathogens and Symbionts in Ticks: A Survey on Tick Species Distribution and Presence of Tick-Transmitted Micro-Organisms in Sardinia, Italy. Journal of Medical Microbiology, 60, 63-68.
[29] Meng, Q., Qiao, J., Chen, C.F., Cai, X.P., Wang, G.C., Zhang, Z.C., et al. (2012) A Preliminary Survey on the Ticks Carrying Ehrlichia and Anaplasma in the Southern Marginal Zone of Gurbantunggut Desert. African Journal of Microbiology Research, 6, 7073-7077.
[30] Nasibeh, H.V., Zakkyeh, T., Hassan, V., Reza, Y.E.M., Morteza, H.V. and Ali, O.M. (2010) Survey of Tick Species Parasiting Domestic Ruminants in Ghaemshahr County, Mazandaran Province, Iran. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine, 3, 804-806.
[31] Aktas, M., Altay, K., Dumanli, N. and Kalkan, A. (2009) Molecular Detection and Identification of Ehrlichia and Anaplasma Species in Ixodid Ticks. Parasitology Research, 104, 1243-1248.

Copyright © 2023 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.