Trypanosoma evansi infection in a captive Indian Wolf Canis lupus pallipes – molecular diagnosis and therapy

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Manojita Dash
Sarat Kumar Sahu
Santosh Kumar Gupta
Niranjana Sahoo
Debabrat Mohapatra


A five-year old, apparently healthy male Indian Wolf Canis lupus pallipes of Nandankanan Zoological Park, Odisha became ill with acute signs of anorexia, lethargy, staggering gait, and was non-responsive to external stimuli. Microscopic examination of Giemsa stained blood smear revealed presence of extracellular flagellates having morphological similarity to Trypanosoma spp. Haematological parameters showed anaemia (Hb 6.0 g%), mild leucopenia (total leukocyte count 5 × 103 / mm3) and thrombocytopenia (180 x 103 / µl). Serum biochemistry revealed high aspartate aminotransferase (AST) (830 IU/L), blood urea nitrogen (BUN) (178.2 mg/dl), creatinine (4.44 mg/dl), and low glucose (25.7 mg/dl) levels. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis targeting internal transcribed spacer (ITS1) region followed by National Centre for Biotechnology Information blast confirmed Trypanosoma evansi infection in the captive Indian Wolf. The animal showed clinical recovery with the administration of single dose of quinapyramine sulphate and quinapyramine chloride @ 4.0 mg/kg b wt subcutaneously. The wolf started taking meat from the very next day with improved activity. No trypanosomes could be detected in the stained blood smears as well as through PCR carried 25 days post treatment. The occurrence became an eye opener for the zoo and henceforth, all canids were included under chemoprophylaxis protocol against trypanosomosis.

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