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A number of gastrointestinal parasites have been reported to infect dogs in Nigeria, some of which have zoonotic potential. Of these, hookworms are the most prevalent, with both Ancylostoma caninum and Uncinaria stenocephala reported in the country. In this study, we subjected 203 hookworm microscopy-positive samples of the 885 individual faecal samples collected from dogs in Nigeria to a recently developed multiplex qPCR for the detection and characterisation of canine hookworm species. The qPCR demonstrated a diagnostic sensitivity of 98% (95% CI 95-99.4) allowing the detection of A. caninum and A. braziliense in 81.3% (165/203, 95% CI 75.3-86.1) and 51.2% (104/203, 95% CI 44.4-58) of the microscopy-positive faecal samples of dogs from Nigeria, respectively and 34.5% (70/203, 95% CI 28.3-41.3) of mixed infections with both hookworm species. The finding of A. braziliense is particularly worrisome given this is a well-known agent of persistent cutaneous larva migrans, commonly referred to as "creeping eruptions" in humans. Although this parasite has been diagnosed in locals and in people travelling in Nigeria suffering from dermatological illnesses, this represents the first molecular identification of A. braziliense in its canine reservoir in the country. These results update the occurrence and distribution of hookworm species affecting dogs in Nigeria highlighting the suitability of the newly developed multiplex qPCR assay as a high-throughput tool for the surveillance of zoonotic hookworms, globally. Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier B.V.


Luca Massetti, Joshua Kamani, Anke Wiethoelter, Phillip McDonagh, Vito Colella, Rebecca J Traub. Field application of a novel multiplex qPCR assay reveals the occurrence of the zoonotic hookworm Ancylostoma braziliense in Nigerian dogs. Acta tropica. 2021 Jan;213:105758

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PMID: 33197446

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