The presence of antibodies against Neospora caninum, Sarcocystis spp. and Toxoplasma gondii was evaluated in buffaloes (Bubalus bubalis) from Rio Grande do Sul state (RS), southern Brazil. Serum samples (n=220) were analyzed for antibodies by indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT). Antibody presence was considered when the titers were equal or higher than 100 for these protozoa. A total of 60.5% (133/220) buffalo serum samples were positive for at least one of the protozoa evaluated in this study. Antibodies for N. caninum, Sarcocystis spp. and T. gondii were found in 36.4% (80/220), 25.5% (56/220) and 16.8% (37/220) of the buffaloes respectively, indicating a higher frequency of N. caninum infection (p=0.0133). The IFAT is a suitable method to diagnose N. caninum, Sarcocystis spp. and T. gondii infection in buffaloes for detecting IgG antibodies. This study demonstrates the presence of these three protozoa in buffalo herds in RS, Brazil, which may be source of infection to other animals. The high frequency of animals positive for N. caninum is important and could be related to reproductive problems. Additionally, the presence of Sarcocystis spp. and T. gondii in buffaloes can be a possible public health issue.
Antibodies; Neospora caninum; Sarcocystis spp.; Toxoplasma gondii; IFAT; protozoa; Apicomplexa; Sarcocystidae; Bubalus bubalis; buffaloes; Rio Grande do Sul; Brazil