Trypanosoma spp

From Dog
Trypanosoma spp in dog blood visualized under light microscopy[1]
Anterior uveitis in a dog infected with Trypanosoma evansi[2]

Trypanosoma spp are a parasitic protozoa which causes canine trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease) in the Middle East and North and South America.

Coinfection with Leishmania spp is common[3][4].

Soecies which are pathogenic to dogs include:

  • Trypanosoma evansi[5]
  • Trypanosoma (Nannomonas) congolense forest-type[6]
  • Trypanosoma brucei brucei[7]
  • Trypanosoma cruzi[8]
  • Trypanosoma caninum[9]

Transmission is by Tse Tse flies, Tabanids and the kissing (assasin) bug, Triatoma infestans[10]

Clinically affected dogs present with chronic lethargy, constipation, anorexia, cardiomyopathy[11], neurological signs and unilateral anterior uveitis[12]. Hematological changes include pancytopenia, hyperglobulinemia, and proteinuria[13].

Diagnosis is based on detection of antibodies to T. evansiserum and cerebrospinal fluid using a card agglutination test (CATT/T evansi), ELISA or PCR assays.

Treatment has been reported as effective with benzimidazole.

Detection of chronic infection and curative therapy of trypanosomiasis are challenging, and infection is usually fatal in the dog.


  1. Animal Research
  2. Hosseininejad, K et al (2007) Trypanosoma evansi in three dogs in Iran. Comp Clin Pathol 16:69–71
  3. Castro EA et al (2007) Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis: epidemiology of canine cutaneous leishmaniasis in the State of Paraná (Brazil). Exp Parasitol 117(1):13-21
  4. Viol MA et al (2012) Detection of cross infections by Leishmania spp. and Trypanosoma spp. in dogs using indirect immunoenzyme assay, indirect fluorescent antibody test and polymerase chain reaction. Parasitol Res 111(4):1607-1613
  5. Defontis M et al (2012) Canine Trypanosoma evansi infection introduced into Germany. Vet Clin Pathol 41(3):369-374
  6. Desquesnes M et al (2012) Atypical hyperpachymorph Trypanosoma (Nannomonas) congolense forest-type in a dog returning from Senegal. Parasite 19(3):239-247
  7. Simo G et al (2012) Genetic characterization of Trypanosoma brucei circulating in domestic animals of the Fontem sleeping sickness of Cameroon. Microbes Infect 14(7-8):651-658
  8. Quijano-Hernández IA et al (2012) Seroprevalence survey of American trypanosomiasis in Central Valley of Toluca. Scientific World Journal 2012:450619
  9. Barros JH et al (2012) Occurrence of Trypanosoma caninum in areas overlapping with leishmaniasis in Brazil: what is the real impact of canine leishmaniasis control? Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg 106(7):419-423
  10. Amelotti I et al (2012) Effects of fipronil on dogs over Triatoma infestans, the main vector of Trypanosoma cruzi, causative agent of Chagas disease. Parasitol Res 111(4):1457-1462
  11. Santos FM et al (2012)
  12. Guedes PM et al (2012) Hematological alterations during experimental canine infection by Trypanosoma cruzi. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 21(2):151-156
  13. Leça Júnior NF et al (2013) First report of Trypanosoma cruzi infection in naturally infected dogs from southern Bahia, Brazil. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet Mar 1