Identification of Sarcocystis Spp. in One-humped Camels (Camelus dromedarius) from Riyadh and Dammam, Saudi Arabia, via Histological and Phylogenetic Approaches

Journal Article
Publication Abstract: 

Sarcocystis (S.) spp. are intracellular protozoan parasites that infect birds and animals, resulting in substantial commercial losses. Sarcocystis spp. have an indirect life cycle; canines and felines are known to act as final hosts, and numerous domestic and wild animals act as intermediate hosts. The presence of sarcocysts in camel meat may diminish its commercial quality. There is limited knowledge regarding the taxonomy and diagnosis of Sarcocystis spp. that infect camels in Saudi Arabia. In this study, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) revealed S. cameli and S. camelicanis (camelicanis) in Camelus (C.) dromedarius. This is the first report of S. camelicanis in Saudi Arabia and is considered a significant finding. Based on cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene (COX1) sequences, two samples of Sarcocystis spp. isolated from C. dromedarius in Riyadh and Dammam were grouped with S. levinei hosted by Bubalus bubalis in India, S. rangi hosted by Rangifer tarandus in Norway, S. miescheriana hosted by Sus scrofa in Italy and S. fayeri hosted by Equus caballus in Canada. The sequences obtained in this study have been deposited in GenBank.