Original Research

A study on the prevalence of dog erythrocyte antigen 1.1 and detection of canine Babesia by polymerase chain reaction from apparently healthy dogs in a selected rural community in Zimbabwe

Solomon Dhliwayo, Tariro A. Makonese, Belinda Whittall, Silvester M. Chikerema, Davies M. Pfukenyi, Musavenga T. Tivapasi
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 87, No 1 | a1409 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jsava.v87i1.1409 | © 2016 Solomon Dhliwayo, Tariro A. Makonese, Belinda Whittall, Silvester M. Chikerema, Davies M. Pfukenyi, Musavenga T. Tivapasi | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 22 March 2016 | Published: 26 October 2016

About the author(s)

Solomon Dhliwayo, Department of Clinical Veterinary Studies, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
Tariro A. Makonese, Department of Clinical Veterinary Studies, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
Belinda Whittall, Department of Clinical Veterinary Studies, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
Silvester M. Chikerema, Department of Clinical Veterinary Studies, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
Davies M. Pfukenyi, Department of Clinical Veterinary Studies, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
Musavenga T. Tivapasi, Department of Clinical Veterinary Studies, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe


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Abstract

A study was carried out to determine the prevalence of blood group antigen dog erythrocyte antigen (DEA) 1.1 in mixed breed dogs in rural Chinamhora, Zimbabwe. DEA 1.1 is clinically the most important canine blood group as it is the most antigenic blood type; hence, DEA 1.1 antibodies are capable of causing acute haemolytic, potentially life-threatening transfusion reactions. In this study, blood samples were collected from 100 dogs in Chinamhora, and blood typing was carried out using standardised DEA 1.1 typing strips with monoclonal anti–DEA 1.1 antibodies (Alvedia® LAB DEA 1.1 test kits). Polymerase chain reaction for detecting Babesia spp. antigen was carried out on 58 of the samples. Of the 100 dogs, 78% were DEA 1.1 positive and 22% were DEA 1.1 negative. A significantly (p = 0.02) higher proportion of females (90.5%) were DEA 1.1 positive than males (69.0%). The probability of sensitisation of recipient dogs following first-time transfusion of untyped or unmatched blood was 17.2%, and an approximately 3% (2.95%) probability of an acute haemolytic reaction following a second incompatible transfusion was found. Babesia spp. antigen was found in 6.9% of the samples. No significant relationship (χ2 = 0.56, p = 0.45) was found between DEA 1.1 positivity and Babesia spp. antigen presence. Despite a low probability of haemolysis after a second incompatibility transfusion, the risk remains present and should not be ignored. Hence, where possible, blood typing for DEA 1.1 is recommended. A survey of DEA 3, 4, 5 and 7 in various breeds is also recommended.


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