Phone : 0092 300 7786573

Advances in Animal and Veterinary Sciences

Download PDF Download ePUB



Research Article


Preliminary Study of Seroprevalence of Chlamydophila Abortus Amongst Cattle in Ninavah Province


Rhaymah Majed1, AL-Farwachi Maab2*, AL-Hankawi Omer2, Al-taee Khdr Hussein2

1Misan University, College of medicine, Department of microbiology; 2Mosul University,College of veterinary medicine, Department of internal and preventive medicine, Mosul, Iraq.


Abstract | Seroprevalence of Chlamydophila abortus in cattle in Ninavah Province, Nothern Iraq was determined by ID ScreenTM Ch. abortus indirect enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) on serum samples from 368 cows aborted cows (n=150), pregnant cows (n=150), and calves aged 1 month old (n=68). Seropositive cows were found only in 3 of 368 sera examined (0.82%). The present study is the first serodiagnosis of epizootic bovine abortion in randomly selected cattle herds in Ninavah province, Iraq.


Keywords | Bovine, Chlamydiophila abortus, Abortion, ELISA, Prevalence


Editor | Kuldeep Dhama, Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Received | February 18, 2017; Accepted | March 20, 2018; Published | March 26, 2018

*Correspondence | Al-Farwachi Maab, Mosul University, College of veterinary medicine, Department of internal and preventive medicine, Mosul, Iraq; Email:

Citation | Majed R, Maab, AF, Omer AH, Hussein AK (2018). Preliminary study of seroprevalence of chlamydophila abortus amongst cattle in ninavah province. Adv. Anim. Vet. Sci. 6(3): 135-138.


ISSN (Online) | 2307-8316; ISSN (Print) | 2309-3331

Copyright © 2018 Majed et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.




Epizootic bovine abortion (Chlamydophila abortion) caused by Chlamydophila abortus (Former name) Chlamydia abortus (Andrews 2004; Da Silva et al., 2006; Reinhold et al., 2011). Chlamydophila abortion has been a major economic loss for domesticated ruminants worldwide (Andrews 2004, Banda et al., 2011, Godin et al., 2008). Depending on the previous studies , the main causes of bovine abortion in cattle in Ninavah province including brucellosis (Al-Farwachi et al., 2009), leptospirosis (Ajaj and Al– Farwachi, 2013) neosporosis and toxoplasmosis (Al- Badrani et al., 2012). Chlamydophila abortion is frequently asymptomatic but can lead to abortion , placentitis , stillbirth and subclinical mastitis (Banda et al., 2011; Kemmerling et al., 2009). Pneumonia and weight loss was recorded in calves (Julia et al., 2007, Reinhold et al., 2008, Wilson and Thomson, 1968). Serodiagnosis of chlamydophilosis is more frequently used because isolation of Chlamydophila spp is difficult and time consuming (He et al., 2007). Most seroprevalence data of bovine chlamydophilosis have been obtained using indirect haemagglutination assay, complement fixation test (CFT) and ELISA (He et al., 2007, He et al., 2007, Juma et al., 2013,OIE,2011). Prevalence of anti C. abortus antibodies in cattle was 0.7% in Mexico (Praga-Ayala et al., 2004), 45% in Austria (Biesenkamp-Uhe et al., 2007), 0.4% in Sweden (Godin et al., 2008), 26.4% in Poland (Niemczuk, 2005),4.44% in Ireland (Livingstone and Longbottom, 2012), 1.69% in Belgium (Yin et al., 2014), 51.3% in Taiwan (Wang et al., 2001), 7.25% in China (Zhou et al., 2013), 4.65% in India (Didugu et al., 2016), 26.92% in Turkey (Halil et al., 2007) and 48.4% in (Tehran) Iran (Esmaeili et al., 2016). The aim of the present study was to estimate the seroprevalence of epizootic bovine abortion in randomly selected cattle herds in Ninavah province


Materials and methods



The study was performed from September 2012 to September 2013 on 368 sera belong to 4 farms of local breed cattle (out door and in door management) where abortion had occurred around Ninavah province in northern of Iraq. Mosul is capital of the Ninevah Province, some 400 km (250 mi) northwest of Baghdad (Figure 1).


The sera were randomly collected from animals as 150 from aborted cows (mostly within 2-4 weeks post abortion), 150 from pregnant cows (at late stage of pregnancy) ,and 68 samples from calves aged one month old. All sera stored at -20 0C until serological examination.

Serological Examination

Serological examination were performed using indirect ELISA ID screenTM Chamydiophila abortus kit (ID- Vet innovative Diagnostics, montpeilier, France). All sera analyzed according to the manufacturers instructions, The percentage of optical density (OD) was calculated as

%OD= Sample OD \ Oppc X 100

Oppc = Mean of positive control .

Sera were considered to be positive when OD ≥ 60.


Statistical Analysis

Statistical analysis of Chlamydia prevalence in cattle of different ages were performed by chi-squared test. Its performed by using the software of SPSS (Statistical Analysis System, Version 11.5, Chicago, Illinois). The differences were considered statistically significant if P < 0.05.





A results of preliminary serological study conducted on 368 sera were randomly collected from 4 herds around Ninavah province showed the seroprevalence rate among cows was 0.82%. A 0.66% of both aborted and pregnant cows were found positive to C. abortus. Of the 68 calves (one month age) examined, antibodies to C. abortus was found only one animal to be seropositive 1.47%. The Chlamydophila seroprevalence was statistically significant among cattle and calves (P < 0.05) (Table 1).


Table 1: Seroprevalance of C. abortus amongst cattle in Ninavah province.


Prevalences (%) Positive






1 150 Aborted cows
0.66 1 150 Pregnant cows


1 68 Calves
0.82 3 368



*significant difference P < 0.05




Abortion has been serious economic problem for ruminants worldwide (Andrews 2004,Da Silva et al., 2006). Our study ,the chlamydophilial seroprevalence (0.82% amonge cattle in Ninavah, Iraq) was much lower than other counties, this result represent the first insight into the presence of C. abortus infection of cattle in Ninavah province, Iraq.


Several studies have reported substantial variation in seroprevalence of C. abortus antibodies in cattle worldwide as 45% in Austria (Biesenkamp-Uhe et al., 2007), 26.4% in Poland (Niemczuk, 2005),4.44% in Ireland (Wilson et al., 2012), 1.69% in Belgium (Yin et al., 2014), 51.3% in Taiwan (Wang et al., 2001), 7.25% in China (Zhou et al., 2013), 4.65% in India (Didugu et al., 2016), 26.92% in Turkey (Halil et al., 2007) and 48.4% in (Tehran) Iran (Esmaeili et al., 2016).


The variations in the results between our study and other studies may be due to many factors such as the geographical location of the study; type of the serological test used and its efficacy; size and type of sample taken; breed of animal; grazing strategies, bad management; nutritional deficiency, and uncontrolled restriction of diseased animal movement from infected area. In addition to virulence of chlamydial strains and possibly innate immunity amongst animal.


The result of this study showed of 0.66% of both aborted and pregnant cows were found positive to anti C.abortus antibodies by indirect ELISA. C. abortus is abortifacient pathogen in cattle (Banda et al., 2011, Johannes et al., 2014, Kemmerling et al., 2009). It cause epzootic bovine abortion in cattle (Andrews 2004, Da Silva et al., 2006, Reinhold et al., 2011).There are many infectious agents causes bovine abortion (bacterial, viral ,protozoal , and fungal agents) (Anderson, 2007; Andrews 2004, He et al., 2007, Öztürk et al., 2012).This might explain a much higher rate of seronegative in the aborted cows in the current study. Serological testing is more frequently used in routine diagnosis of chlamydophilosis because of absence of clinical signs in infected animal chlamydiophilosis until abortion occurs and pathogen isolation is difficult and time consuming (Juma et al., 2013, Qiu et al., 2006, Vlahović et al., 2001). The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) recommends the use of CFT and ELISA for detecting chlamydophilial antibodies (OIE, 2011). The ELISA kits are developed for serodiagnosis of C. abortus antibodies in ruminants such as ID screenTM Chamydiophila abortus kit ,Indirect ELISA, this test are more sensitive and specific as compared to CFT. (OIE, 2011, Vlahović et al., 2001).

Present study demonstrated that percentage of seropositive calves was 1.47% and the Chlamydophila seroprevalence was statistically significant among cattle and calves These infection in calves originating from their dam with subclinical chamydophilia mastitis (Andrews 2004 Banda et al., 2011, Johannes et al., 2014, Reinhold et al., 2011) or through inutero transfer (Andrews 2004, Johannes et al., 2014, Reinhold et al., 2011). Newborn calves, which are highly susceptible to infectious agents because of the obstruction of uterine transfer of maternal antibodies by the syndesmochorial bovine placenta, represent an ideal population for the analysis of chlamydial infection. Thus, bovine neonates are immunologically naı¨ve, so that most calves, particularly if they do not receive colostrum, are prone to contract diseases (Anderson, 2007; Jee et al., 2004).




The researchers are grateful to the Pioneer Projects Department, Research & Development Directorate\ Ministry of Higher Education & Scientific Research for providing all requirements. Thanks are also extended to the college of veterinary medicine, Mosul University.


Conflict of Interest


The authors declare that they have no conflict of interests.


Authors Contribution


All authors contributed equally to this paper.




  • Al- Badrani BA, AL-Farwachi MI, AL-Hankawai OKh (2012). Detection of Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum antibodies in cattle in Mosul city , Iraq. AL-Qadisiya J. Vet. Med. Sci. 11 ( 3 ): 46-50.
  • Al-Farwachi MI, Al-Iraqi OM, Al-Hankawe OKh, Abdul-Majeed M O (2009). Using of competitive ELISA in detection of brucella antibodies in cattle sera in Mosul city, Iraq. Iraqi J. Vet. Sci. 23(2): 97-103.
  • Anderson ML (2007). Infectious causes of bovine abortion during mid- to late-gestation. Theriogenology. 68(3): 474-86.
  • Andrews AH (2004). Bovine Medicine Diseases & Husbandry of Cattle, 2nd edition. Blackwell. 139-140.
  • Ajaj EA, Al-Farwachi MI (2013). Detection of Bovine Leptospirosis Using Different Conventional Laboratory Tests in Nineveh Province, Iraq. J. Anim. Health Prod. 1(3): 32 – 35.
  • Banda LJ, Kamwanja LA, Chagunda MG, Ashworth CJ, Roberts DJ (2011). Status of dairy cow management and fertility in smallholder farms in Malawi. Trop. Anim. Health Prod. 44(4):715-727.
  • Biesenkamp-Uhe C, Li Y, Hehnen HR, Sachse K, Kaltenboeck B (2007). Therapeutic Chlamydophila abortus and C. pecorum vaccination transiently reduces bovine mastitis associated with Chlamydophila infection. Infect. Immun. 75(2): 870-877.
  • Da Silva FG, De Freitas JC, Muller EE (2006). Chlamydophila abortus in production animals. Cienc Rural. 36: 342-348.
  • Didugu H, Narasimha CE , Ramanipushpa RN, Ramaraju SSB, Reddy MV, Satyanarayana M, Kishore KN, Saimahesh Reddy A (2016). Serological investigation of chlamydial infection among ruminants in Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh. India. J. Livestock Sci. 7: 187-191.
  • Esmaeili H, Bolourchi M, Kalbasi S, Hamedi M (2016). Anti Chlamydia abortus antibodies in aborted cattle in some farms around Tehran, Iran Iranian J. Vet. Clin. Sci. 10(1): 87-95.
  • Halil IG, Cihan K, Oktay G, Mahmut S (2007). Saroprevalence of Chlamydophila abortus in aborting ewes and dairy cattle in the North – East part of Turkey. Bull. Vet. Inst. Pulawy. 51: 9-13
  • He CL, Zhang HH, Zhang GL (2007). Isolation and serological survey of chlamydial abortion in cows [In Chinese]. Gansu Anim. Husbandry. Vet. Med. 193:10–12.
  • He CL, Zhang HH, Zhang GL (2007). Pathogen isolation and serosurvey of chlamydial abortion in dairy cows [in Chinese]. Gansu Anim. Vet. Sci. 37: 10–12.
  • Godin AC, Björkman C, Englund S, Johansson KE , Niskanen R, Alenius S (2008). Investigation of Chlamydophila spp. in dairy cows with reproductive disorders. Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica. 50(1): 50-39.
  • Jee J, Degraves F, Kim T, Kaltenboeck B (2004): Hight prevalence of natural Chlamydophila species infection in calves. J. Clin. Microbiol. 42: 5664-5672.
  • Johannes K, Axel W, Haukur S (2014). Chlamydia and Chlamydophilia in bovine reproduction. Clin. Theriogenology. 6(3): 11-16.
  • Julia J, Elisabeth L, Nathalie K, Konrad S (2007). A clinically silent respiratory infection with Chlamydophila spp. in calves is associated with airway obstruction and pulmonary inflammation. Vet. Res. 38: 711–728
  • Juma A, Cera L, Boci J, Haxha L, Kreizinger, Z, Gyuranecz M (2013). Serological investigation on Chlamydophila abortus infection in cattle from Albania; Albanian. J. Agri. Sci. 12(1): 99-102.
  • Kemmerling K, Muller U, Mielenz M, Sauerwein H (2009). Chlamydophila species in dairy farms: polymerase chain reaction prevalence, disease association, and risk factors identified in a cross-sectional study in western Germany. J. Dairy Sci. 92(9): 4347-4354.
  • Livingstone M, Longbottom D (2012). Seroprevalence of chlamydial infection in cattle in Ireland. Vet. J. 193(2): 583–585.
  • Niemczuk K (2005). Prevalence of antibodies against Chlamydia psittaci and Chlamydophila abortus in cattle in Poland. A preliminary report. Bull. Vet. Inst. Pulawy. 49: 293-297.
  • Organización Mundial de Epizootias (OIE) ( 2011) enfermedades-de-la-lista-de-la-oie-.
  • Öztürk D, Kale M, Pehlivanoğlu F, Hasırcıoğlu S, Türütoğlu H (2012). Evaluation for some bacterial and viral abortions of dairy cattle farms in Burdur District of Turkey. Kafkas Univ. Vet. Fak. Derg. 18(2): 255-258
  • Praga -Ayala A R, Roberto M , Jimenez D, Orteg A, Santana ZM. Salem V, Cubilos G, Fernandez R , Humberto G (2004). Low seroprevalence of Chlamydia abortus in dairy cows of hot environment in southern of Mexico. Life Sci. J. 11(11): 790-793.
  • Qiu C, Zhou J, Cheng S, Cao XA (2006). Identification and immunogenicity of pathogen causing chlamydial abortion in dairy cows [in Chinese]. Vet. Sci. China. 36: 270–273.
  • Reinhold P, Jaeger J, Liebler-Tenorio E, Berndt A, Bachmann R, Schubert E, Melzer F, Elschner M, Sachse K (2008). Impact of latent infections with Chlamydophila species in young cattle. Vet. J. 175(2): 202-211.
  • Reinhold P, Sachse K, Kaltenboeck B (2011). Chlamydiaceae in cattle: commensals, trigger organisms, or pathogens. Vet. J. 189(3): 257-267.
  • Vlahović K, Dovč A, Župančić Ž, Pavlak M , Jerčić J (2001). Comparison of serological procedures for diagnosis of infection with Chlamydophila sp. in bovines. Vet. Arh. 71(6): 367-379.
  • Wang FI, Shieh H, Liao YK (2001). Prevalence of Chlamydophila abortus infection in domesticated ruminants in Taiwan. J. Vet. Med. Sci. 63: 1215–1220.
  • Wilson K, Sammin D, Harmeyer S, Nath M, Livingstone, M, Longbottom, D (2012). Seroprevalence of chlamydial infection in cattle in Ireland. Vet. J. 193(2): 583-585.
  • Wilson MR, Thomson RG ( 1968). Chlamydia pneumonia of calves. Res. Vet. Sci. 9: 467–473.
  • Yin L, Scautteet K, Kalmar ID, Bertels G, Van Driessche E, Czaplicki G, Borel N, Longbottom D, Frétin D, Dispas M, Van Rompay D (2014). Prevalence of Chlamydia abortus in Belgian ruminants. Vlaams Diergeneeskundig Tijdschrift. 164: 83-164.
  • Zhou DH, Zhao FR, Xia HY, Xu M J, Huang SY, Song HQ, Zhu XQ (2013). Seroprevalence of chlamydial infection in dairy cattle in Guangzhou, southern China. Irish Vet. J. 66(2): 1-4.