Two DNA probes for the rapid and sensitive detection and identification of Babesia ovata, a major causative agent of bovine babesiosis in Japan, were developed from the parasite genomic DNA. They were highly specific to B. ovata, and sufficiently sensitive to detect not less than 100pg parasite DNA, the equivalent of total DNA from 8000 parasites. These probes, sensitive and specific to B. ovata were found useful for controlling the disease in cattle, and preventing the entrance of exotic Babesia, a cause severer disease.
(First Lab. of Protozoology, First Research Division)