Isolation of Neospora caninum from dairy zero grazing cattle in Israel.
ABSTRACT First Israeli Neospora caninum isolates were obtained from brain tissues of aborted fetuses (NcIs491 and NcIs580) from dairy farms endemic for neosporosis and maintaining cattle on zero grazing. Tissues from different parts of the fetus brains were used to infect Vero cells. Tachyzoites of N. caninum were first observed in cultures from days 30 and 32 after infection. To confirm the identity of the isolated parasites, DNA extracts from brains and cultures were tested by PCR with specific primers based on the Nc5 gene. Specific fragments were amplified by PCR from infected cultures of both fetuses on day 25. Susceptible seronegative gerbils (Meriones tristrami) were inoculated intraperitoneally with 10(3) to 10(5) tenfold dilutions of subculture tachyzoites. The inoculated gerbils developed specific antibodies to N. caninum, with end-point serum dilution of 1:4096 in the IFA assay, whereas no neurological signs or deaths were seen during 4 months of observation.