Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Datasheet

Sarcocystis infections

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Datasheet

Sarcocystis infections

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 13 July 2017
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Animal Disease
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Sarcocystis infections
  • Pathogens
  • Sarcocystis
  • Sarcocystis arieticanis
  • Sarcocystis bertrami
  • Sarcocystis capracanis
  • Sarcocystis cervi
  • Overview
  • A fuller datasheet will be added for this topic in the next edition of the Compendium.

    As with all our datasheets we welcome contributions from experts. If you would like to contribute please contact us at:

    Compendium Programme
    CA...

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    Compendia
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    Wallingford
    Oxfordshire
    OX10 8DE
    UK
    compend@cabi.org

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Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Sarcocystis infections

International Common Names

  • English: sarcocystis abortion in ruminants and swine; sarcocystis tenella, protozoal, myelitis, encephalomyelitis in sheep; sarcocystosis; sarcocystosis in ruminants; sarcocystosis in swine; sarcocystosis, sarcocystis, in birds; sarcosporidiosis; sarcosporidiosis in birds

Pathogen/s

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Sarcocystis
Sarcocystis arieticanis
Sarcocystis bertrami
Sarcocystis capracanis
Sarcocystis cervi
Sarcocystis cruzi
Sarcocystis gigantea
Sarcocystis hemionilatrantis
Sarcocystis hirsuta
Sarcocystis hominis
Sarcocystis medusiformis
Sarcocystis miescheriana
Sarcocystis moulei
Sarcocystis neurona
Sarcocystis porcifelis
Sarcocystis suihominis
Sarcocystis tenella

Overview

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A fuller datasheet will be added for this topic in the next edition of the Compendium.

As with all our datasheets we welcome contributions from experts. If you would like to contribute please contact us at:

Compendium Programme
CAB International
Wallingford
OX10 8DE
UK
compend@cabi.org

Sarcocystosis is caused by infection with Sarcocystis spp. This genus includes many species of coccidian parasites that commonly infect all livestock animals (Radostits et al., 1994).

Occurrence of the disease is widespread and the prevalence of the disease is almost 100% in cattle, sheep and horses, with a lower infection rate in pigs (Fayer and Dubey, 1989).

See the datasheet on the genus Sarcocystis for an account of the life cycle. Sarcocystis organisms are parasites of carnivorous definitive hosts (particularly dogs) and herbivorous intermediate hosts.

Meat condemnation due to the presence of large cysts in the muscles of intermediate hosts, detected on meat inspection, is the most economically important eaffect of sarcocystosis (Radostits et al., 1994).

A description of the clinical disease in the intermediate host is given in Radostits et al. (1994). Pathogenesis of sarcocystosis in the intermediate host is associated with the parasite’s life cycle, and severity of symptoms is proportional to the number of sporocysts ingested. Haemorrhage and anaemia are caused in the intermediate host when the parasites undergo schizogony in the endothelial cells of the arterioles and capillaries. Fever is also associated with the parasitaemia, coinciding with the maturation of first- and second-generation schizonts (Fayer and Dubey, 1986). S. suihominis appears to produce growth retardation in pigs as a result of cytokine reactions with the endocrine system, and changes in plasma concentrations of somatostatin and growth hormone (Frayer and Elsasser, 1991).

Disease control is difficult because it is often hard to separate carnivorous animals (dogs and cats) from livestock species. Infection of farm dogs and cats can be avoided, or minimized, by only feeding thoroughly cooked meat (Langham and Charleston, 1990, see Radostits et al., 1994).

Host Animals

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Animal nameContextLife stageSystem
Bos indicus (zebu)Domesticated host; Wild hostCattle and Buffaloes|All Stages
Bos taurus (cattle)Domesticated hostCattle and Buffaloes|All Stages
Capra hircus (goats)Domesticated hostSheep and Goats|All Stages
CervidaeDomesticated host; Wild host
Equus caballus (horses)Domesticated host
Gallus gallus domesticus (chickens)
Lama glama (llamas)Domesticated host
Lama pacos (alpacas)Domesticated host
Ovis aries (sheep)Domesticated hostSheep and Goats|All Stages
Sus scrofa (pigs)Domesticated hostPigs|All Stages

Systems Affected

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blood and circulatory system diseases of large ruminants
blood and circulatory system diseases of pigs
blood and circulatory system diseases of small ruminants
digestive diseases of large ruminants
digestive diseases of pigs
digestive diseases of small ruminants
muscular skeletal diseases of poultry
reproductive diseases of large ruminants
reproductive diseases of pigs
reproductive diseases of small ruminants

List of Symptoms/Signs

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SignLife StagesType
Cardiovascular Signs / Tachycardia, rapid pulse, high heart rate Sign
Cardiovascular Signs / Tachycardia, rapid pulse, high heart rate Sign
Digestive Signs / Anorexia, loss or decreased appetite, not nursing, off feed Sign
Digestive Signs / Anorexia, loss or decreased appetite, not nursing, off feed Sign
Digestive Signs / Anorexia, loss or decreased appetite, not nursing, off feed Sign
Digestive Signs / Diarrhoea Sign
Digestive Signs / Excessive salivation, frothing at the mouth, ptyalism Sign
Digestive Signs / Oral mucosal ulcers, vesicles, plaques, pustules, erosions, tears Sign
Digestive Signs / Tongue ulcers, vesicles, erosions, sores, blisters, cuts, tears Sign
General Signs / Abnormal proprioceptive positioning, knuckling Sign
General Signs / Abnormal proprioceptive positioning, knuckling Sign
General Signs / Ataxia, incoordination, staggering, falling Sign
General Signs / Ataxia, incoordination, staggering, falling Sign
General Signs / Ataxia, incoordination, staggering, falling Sign
General Signs / Cyanosis, blue skin or membranes Sign
General Signs / Decreased, absent thirst, hypodipsia, adipsia Sign
General Signs / Dehydration Sign
General Signs / Dysmetria, hypermetria, hypometria Sign
General Signs / Dysmetria, hypermetria, hypometria Sign
General Signs / Dysmetria, hypermetria, hypometria Sign
General Signs / Fever, pyrexia, hyperthermia Sign
General Signs / Fever, pyrexia, hyperthermia Sign
General Signs / Forelimb atrophy, wasting Sign
General Signs / Forelimb lameness, stiffness, limping fore leg Sign
General Signs / Forelimb lameness, stiffness, limping fore leg Sign
General Signs / Forelimb weakness, paresis, paralysis front leg Sign
General Signs / Generalized lameness or stiffness, limping Sign
General Signs / Generalized lameness or stiffness, limping Sign
General Signs / Generalized weakness, paresis, paralysis Sign
General Signs / Hindlimb atrophy, wasting Sign
General Signs / Hindlimb lameness, stiffness, limping hind leg Sign
General Signs / Hindlimb lameness, stiffness, limping hind leg Sign
General Signs / Icterus, jaundice Sign
General Signs / Icterus, jaundice Sign
General Signs / Inability to stand, downer, prostration Sign
General Signs / Inability to stand, downer, prostration Sign
General Signs / Inability to stand, downer, prostration Sign
General Signs / Increased mortality in flocks of birds Sign
General Signs / Lack of growth or weight gain, retarded, stunted growth Sign
General Signs / Lack of growth or weight gain, retarded, stunted growth Sign
General Signs / Lymphadenopathy, swelling, mass or enlarged lymph nodes Sign
General Signs / Opisthotonus Sign
General Signs / Opisthotonus Sign
General Signs / Opisthotonus Sign
General Signs / Pale mucous membranes or skin, anemia Sign
General Signs / Pale mucous membranes or skin, anemia Sign
General Signs / Paraparesis, weakness, paralysis both hind limbs Sign
General Signs / Paraparesis, weakness, paralysis both hind limbs Sign
General Signs / Petechiae or ecchymoses, bruises, ecchymosis Sign
General Signs / Reluctant to move, refusal to move Sign
General Signs / Sudden death, found dead Sign
General Signs / Sudden death, found dead Sign
General Signs / Torticollis, twisted neck Sign
General Signs / Trembling, shivering, fasciculations, chilling Sign
General Signs / Trembling, shivering, fasciculations, chilling Sign
General Signs / Trembling, shivering, fasciculations, chilling Sign
General Signs / Underweight, poor condition, thin, emaciated, unthriftiness, ill thrift Sign
General Signs / Weight loss Sign
Nervous Signs / Dullness, depression, lethargy, depressed, lethargic, listless Sign
Nervous Signs / Dullness, depression, lethargy, depressed, lethargic, listless Sign
Nervous Signs / Dullness, depression, lethargy, depressed, lethargic, listless Sign
Nervous Signs / Dullness, depression, lethargy, depressed, lethargic, listless Sign
Nervous Signs / Excitement, delirium, mania Sign
Nervous Signs / Excitement, delirium, mania Sign
Nervous Signs / Hyperesthesia, irritable, hyperactive Sign
Nervous Signs / Hyperesthesia, irritable, hyperactive Sign
Nervous Signs / Muscle hypotonia Sign
Nervous Signs / Seizures or syncope, convulsions, fits, collapse Sign
Nervous Signs / Seizures or syncope, convulsions, fits, collapse Sign
Nervous Signs / Seizures or syncope, convulsions, fits, collapse Sign
Nervous Signs / Tremor Sign
Nervous Signs / Tremor Sign
Nervous Signs / Tremor Sign
Ophthalmology Signs / Blindness Sign
Ophthalmology Signs / Chemosis, conjunctival, scleral edema, swelling Sign
Ophthalmology Signs / Conjunctival, scleral, injection, abnormal vasculature Sign
Ophthalmology Signs / Conjunctival, scleral, redness Sign
Ophthalmology Signs / Exophthalmos, eyes protruding, proptosis Sign
Ophthalmology Signs / Nystagmus Sign
Pain / Discomfort Signs / Forelimb pain, front leg Sign
Pain / Discomfort Signs / Hindfoot pain, rear foot Sign
Reproductive Signs / Abortion or weak newborns, stillbirth Sign
Reproductive Signs / Abortion or weak newborns, stillbirth Sign
Reproductive Signs / Agalactia, decreased, absent milk production Sign
Respiratory Signs / Abnormal lung or pleural sounds, rales, crackles, wheezes, friction rubs Sign
Respiratory Signs / Coughing, coughs Sign
Respiratory Signs / Dyspnea, difficult, open mouth breathing, grunt, gasping Sign
Respiratory Signs / Dyspnea, difficult, open mouth breathing, grunt, gasping Sign
Respiratory Signs / Increased respiratory rate, polypnea, tachypnea, hyperpnea Sign
Respiratory Signs / Increased respiratory rate, polypnea, tachypnea, hyperpnea Sign
Respiratory Signs / Mucoid nasal discharge, serous, watery Sign
Respiratory Signs / Purulent nasal discharge Sign
Skin / Integumentary Signs / Alopecia, thinning, shedding, easily epilated, loss of, hair Sign
Skin / Integumentary Signs / Dryness of skin or hair Sign
Skin / Integumentary Signs / Rough hair coat, dull, standing on end Sign
Skin / Integumentary Signs / Ruffled, ruffling of the feathers Sign
Skin / Integumentary Signs / Skin edema Sign
Skin / Integumentary Signs / Skin necrosis, sloughing, gangrene Sign