Meningoencephalitis caused by pathogenic Sarcocystis species in a naturally infected sheep in Turkey

ALASONYALILAR DEMİRER A., KAHRAMAN M. M. , AKKOÇ A., Erturkuner S. P. , Guzel E. E. , KUL O., ...More

TIERAERZTLICHE PRAXIS AUSGABE GROSSTIERE NUTZTIERE, vol.45, no.1, pp.42-46, 2017 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier


A 3-year-old sheep was examined after an acute onset of hind limb paralysis and ataxia. At necropsy, central nervous system, pulmonary and intestinal hyperaemia and ecchymoses in the aortic arch were observed. Main microscopic lesions were confined to the heart, cerebrum and cerebellum. There were a multifocal mild myocarditis and non-suppurative meningoencephalitis together with protozoal cysts in the heart and the brain. Protozoal cystic structures were observed within many of the myocardial fibers as well as in the cerebrum and cerebellum. Using light microscopy it could not be morphologically determined whether these organisms were Toxoplasma (T.) gondii or Neospora (N.) caninum. Additional diagnostic methods like immunohistochemistry and polymerase chain reaction provided differentiation of Sarcocystis from T. gondii and N. caninum. Transmission electron microscopy demonstrated characteristic features of Sarcocystis sp. as previously described. This is the first confirmed diagnosis of Sarcocystis sp. in the central nervous system of a sheep from Turkey.