A molecular survey of Eimeria in chickens across Australia

Godwin, Rosamond M. and Morgan, Jess A.T. (2015) A molecular survey of Eimeria in chickens across Australia. Veterinary Parasitology, 214 1-2: 16-21. doi:10.1016/j.vetpar.2015.09.030

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Author Godwin, Rosamond M.
Morgan, Jess A.T.
Title A molecular survey of Eimeria in chickens across Australia
Journal name Veterinary Parasitology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1873-2550
Publication date 2015-11-30
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.vetpar.2015.09.030
Open Access Status File (Author Post-print)
Volume 214
Issue 1-2
Start page 16
End page 21
Total pages 6
Place of publication Amsterdam, Netherlands
Publisher Elsevier
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Coccidiosis is a costly enteric disease of chickens caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Eimeria. Disease diagnosis and management is complicated since there are multiple Eimeria species infecting chickens and mixed species infections are common. Current control measures are only partially effective and this, combined with concerns over vaccine efficacy and increasing drug resistance, demonstrates a need for improved coccidiosis diagnosis and control. Before improvements can be made, it is important to understand the species commonly infecting poultry flocks in both backyard and commercial enterprises. The aim of this project was to conduct a survey and assessment of poultry Eimeria across Australia using genetic markers, and create a collection of isolates for each Eimeria species. A total of 260 samples (faecal or caecal) was obtained, and survey results showed that Eimeria taxa were present in 98% of commercial and 81% of backyard flocks. The distribution of each Eimeria species was widespread across Australia, with representatives of all species being found in every state and territory, and the Eimeria species predominating in commercial flocks differed from those in backyard flocks. Three operational taxonomic units also occurred frequently in commercial flocks highlighting the need to understand the impact of these uncharacterised species on poultry production. As Eimeria infections were also frequent in backyard flocks, there is a potential for backyard flocks to act as reservoirs for disease, especially as the industry moves towards free range production systems. This Eimeria collection will be an important genetic resource which is the crucial first step in the development of more sophisticated diagnostic tools and the development of new live vaccines which ultimately will provide savings to the industry in terms of more efficient coccidiosis management.
Keyword Eimeria
Species survey
Mitochondrial DNA
Capillary electrophoresis
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation
Official 2016 Collection
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 2 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 2 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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