A Study of Cross-Reactivity in Serum Samples From Dogs Positive for Leishmania Sp., Babesia Canis and Ehrlichia Canis in Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay and Indirect Fluorescent Antibody Test

Rev Bras Parasitol Vet. Jan-Mar 2008;17(1):7-11. doi: 10.1590/s1984-29612008000100002.


To verify the presence of cross-reaction among leishmaniosis, ehrlichiosis and babesiosis in serological diagnostics used in human visceral leishmaniasis control programs, serum samples from leishmaniasis endemic and non-endemic areas were collected and tested by Indirect Fluorescent Antibody (IFAT) and Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). All serum samples from endemic areas were positive for Leishmania sp., by ELISA and IFAT, 51% positive for Babesia canis and 43% for Ehrlichia canis by IFAT. None of the serum samples from non-endemic areas were positive for Leishmania sp., by IFAT, but 67% were positive for B. canis and 78% for E. canis using the same test. When tested by ELISA for Leishmania sp., four samples from non-endemic area were positive. These dogs were then located and no clinical signs, parasites or antibody was detected in new tests for a six month period. Only one of these 4 samples was positive for B. canis by IFAT and ELISA and three for E. canis by IFAT. The results of the work suggest a co-infection in the endemic area and no serological cross-reaction among these parasites by IFAT and ELISA.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / blood*
  • Antibodies, Protozoan / blood*
  • Babesia / immunology*
  • Cross Reactions
  • Dogs / blood*
  • Ehrlichia canis / immunology*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect
  • Leishmania / immunology*


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Antibodies, Protozoan