Description and Study of Sarcocystis From the One Humped Camel (Camelus Dromedarius) in Saudi Arabia

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: El Faki Abdel Rahman Ibrahim, Ibrahim
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Camels are frequently infected with sarcosporidial cysts and with dormozoites of Isospora felis in Saudi Arabia. Tissue samples were obtained from 811 camels and were macroscopically examined, microscopically and by peptic digestion technique for the presence of muscle cysts or bradyzoites. The tissues examined included 811 diaphragms, 319 hearts, 539 oesophagi, 365 skeletal muscles, 93 tongues, 67 kidneys, 58 livers, 5 uteri and 5 foetuses. The diaphragm was the most affected organ with an infection rate of 87.4% followed by the heart (55.2%), the oesophagus (35.1%) and skeletal muscles (32.6). Three of the five uteri were infected, but none of the other organs examined was affected. All cats that were fed cyst-infected diaphragms shed partially speculated I. felis oocysts in their faeces 6 to 9 days post infection while dogs and Wistar rats failed to do so. Moreover, Wistar rats, rabbits and cats were resistant to infection with sporulated oocysts and sporocysts. Following potency, the cats fed infected tissues continued to shed partially sporulated oocysts with occasional unsporulated ones for a period of 14 or 15 days. The oocysts of I. felis are broadly ovoid to slightly ellipsoidal measuring 31.2 - 38.3 x 35.5 - 46.4 µm with a mean of 37.8 x 43.1 µm. They had a smooth yellowish green double layered wall 1.6 to 2.8 µm, with a mean of 2.1 µm. Sporulated oocysts each contain two sporocysts with four sporozoites. Unsporulated ones contain sporonts and failed to sporulate outside the host. Muscle sarcosporidial cysts are microscopic and measure 613 -1312 x 46.7 - 69.5 and 73.9 - 93.9 x 43.4 - 62.1 µm in longitudinal and cross sections, respectively. The cyst wall is 2 - 3 µm wide and consists of two layers: an outer layer that divides the cyst into several compartments containing banana-shaped bradyzoites that measure 12.9 - 16.8 x 3.4 - 5.9 µm. It is presumed from these findings that organisms found in the infected diaphragms therefore represent both a Sarcocystis species and dormozoites of I. felis, although it was not possible to differentiate the two.
Description and Study of Sarcocystis From the One Humped Camel (Camelus Dromedarius) in Saudi Arabia