Anaplasma bovis microscopy and molecular diagnostics (PCR)


Anaplasma bovis is a microorganism of the genus Anaplasma, family Anaplasmataceae, Rickettsial order. Anaplasma spp is a parasitic Gram-negative proteobacteria dogs, which can infect cattle, sheep, goats, buffaloes and some wild ruminants. It is located in North and South America, mainly in the central and eastern regions of the continent, where it is considered a zoonosis.

The life cycle of this microorganism involves intermediate host where mature parasitically generally ticks. Anaplasma species are transmitted mechanically or biologically by insect vectors and infect the blood cells of the host causing anaplasmosis.

Anaplasmosis occurs most frequently in tropical areas of the world. Clinical signs associated with disease include lethargy, anorexia, fever, joint disease and gastrointestinal signs such as abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomiting. Also described lymphadenopathy, splenomegaly, neurological dysfunction, retinal detachment and epistaxis. Additionally, subclinical infections may occur without clinical signs. Referring to hematological changes, they may include thrombocytopenia, morulae formation within neutrophils, anemia, leukopenia, eosinopenia, lymphopenia and monocytosis.

Once the animal has been infected, it can remain throughout life as carrier, and identifying these animals depends on the detection of specific antibodies by serological or DNA of the bacterium by methods of DNA amplification (PCR) tests.

Recommended tests for diagnosis:


The diagnosis is based on microscopic identification of parasites in blood smears to observe infected neutrophils, in detecting antibodies (ELISA), or molecular diagnostic methods (PCR).

Tests in IVAMI:


      • Microscopic examination for observing parasites.
      • Molecular diagnosis (PCR), to detect DNA Anaplasma bovis.

Recommended sample:


      • Whole blood collected with EDTA (2 to 5 mL).

Preservation and shipment of sample:


      • Refrigerated (preferred) for less than 2 days.
      • Frozen: over 2 days.


Delivery term:


      • Microscopic examination: 24 hours.
      • Molecular diagnosis (PCR): 24 to 48 hours.