Moving reptiles?  Use our snake and lizard quarantine PCR panel to avoid spreading contagious agents.

Ruminating about hoofstock issues?  Try our ruminant fecal screening PCR panel - tests for most common GI pathogens in wild & domestic ruminants.

Our Rodent Infestation PCR Panel tests for 5 common pathogens found in rodent-contaminated facilities.

In over your head? Try our waterborne pathogens PCR panel - detection of 7 different environmental pathogens by real time PCR.

Something fishy going on in your tanks? Try our new Zebrafish screening PCR panel - tests for 6 different pathogen categories from one easy-to-collect sample.

* * *

Zoologix performs environmental, zoo, wildlife and aquatic PCR tests for...

Aeromonas hydrophila

African swine fever

Aleutian disease

Amphibian panel

Anisakis worms



Bacillus species

Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis

Baylisascaris procyonis

Borna virus

Borrelia burgdorferi



Canine circovirus

Canine distemper

Canine parvovirus

Capillaria xenopodis


Chlamydophila pneumoniae

Chytrid fungus

Citrobacter freundii

Classical swine fever





Coxiella burnetii



Cryptosporidium serpentis

Cryptosporidium varanii (formerly saurophilum)

Delftia acidovorans

E. coli O157:H7

E. coli panel



Enterobacter cloacae


Epizootic hemorrhagic disease

Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)

Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP)

Feline panleukopenia

Ferret respiratory enteric coronavirus

Francisella tularensis




Hepatitis E

Herring worms


Influenza type A

Influenza type B

Japanese encephalitis

Johne's disease

Kangaroo herpesviruses


Lawsonia intracellularis




Listeria monocytogenes

Lizard quarantine panel

Lyme disease

Macropodid (kangaroo) herpesviruses


Mink enteritis virus


Mycobacteria in mammals, amphibians and fish

Mycoplasma mustelae

Mycoplasma species

Neospora caninum

Nipah virus

Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola

Pasteurella multocida

Pentastomid worms

Plasmodium species

Porcine cytomegalovirus

Porcine lymphotropic herpesvirus

Porcine parvovirus

Pseudocapillaria tomentosa

Pseudocapillaroides xenopi

Pseudoloma neurophilia


Pseudoterranova worms

Q fever


Raillietiella orientalis


Reovirus screen


Rift Valley fever



Sarcocystis neurona

Snake fungal disease

Snake quarantine panel

Stenotrophomonas maltophilia

St. Louis encephalitis

Strep pneumoniae

Streptococcus pyogenes

Swine vesicular disease

Tongue worms

Toxoplasma gondii

Treponema pallidum


Trypanosoma cruzi

Trypanosoma evansi


Turtle fraservirus


Valley Fever

Vesicular stomatitis


West Nile virus

White nose syndrome

Yersinia enterocolitica

Yersinia pestis

Yersinia pseudotuberculosis

Neospora caninum PCR test
wildlife and zoo assay data sheet

Neospora caninum

Test code:
X0011 - Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of Neospora caninum by real time polymerase chain reaction


Neospora caninum is a recently discovered, apicomplexan, coccidial protozoan that causes abortion in many mammals including cattle, goats, horses and sheep. Some evidence also indicates association of this organism with neonatal neurological and neuromuscular disease in mammals such as dogs, cattle, sheep and deer.

N. caninum-induced bovine abortion has been reported in many countries including the United States, Mexico, Canada, western Europe, Central and South America, Australia and Japan. N. caninum is a major cause of bovine abortion in USA. Prospective and retrospective studies show that 20-45% of bovine abortions in drylot dairies in California were attributable to neosporosis.

In adult cattle infected with this parasite, abortion seems to be the only clinical sign. Bovine fetuses from three months to nine months of gestational age can be infected with this parasite, with most cases occurring between the fifth and seventh month of gestation. Infected calves may be born clinically normal or with neurological signs such as weakness and ataxia.

In infected neonatal dogs, progressive hind limb paresis and paralysis are the most common clinical signs. Skin involvement has only been reported in older dogs. In infected adult horses encephalomyelitis, polyradiculoneuritis and myeloencephalitis can result.

The life cycle of this parasite consists of three stages known as tachyzoite, tissue cyst and oocyst. Tachyzoites are the rapidly multiplying form of the parasite that invades a variety of cells, producing the characteristic lesions of neosporosis in affected animals. The latent form is the tissue cyst, which contains bradyzoites and is found in peripheral and central nervous tissue.

Although other animals may be potential hosts of this parasite, only dogs can serve as both definitive (ie have tachyzoites in their tissues) and intermediate (ie shed oocysts in their feces) hosts of this parasite. When a definitive host ingests tissue cysts from infected intermediate host tissues, sexual development of this parasite takes place. This results in shedding of unsporulated oocysts in the feces. Sporulation occurs outside the host. Intermediate hosts such as cattle, dogs, sheep, goats, horses and deer may then become infected by ingesting food or water contaminated with the oocysts.

Neospora caninum infection is sometimes diagnosed by serology or by specific identification of parasites within tissue lesions using immunohistochemistry (IHC) techniques. However, these methods are not very sensitive and cannot detect some N. caninum infections. Molecular detection by polymerase chain reaction is the most specific, sensitive and rapid method to detect this parasite (Baszler et al., 1999).


  • Help confirm the disease causing agent
  • Shorten the time required to confirm a clinical diagnosis of N. caninum infection
  • Help ensure that herds and animal populations are free of N. caninum
  • Early prevention of spread of this parasite among a herd or population
  • Minimize human exposure to this parasite

Baszler, T.V., Gay, L.J., Long, M.T. and Mathison, B.A. (1999) Detection by PCR of Neospora caninum in Fetal Tissues from Spontaneous Bovine Abortions. J. Clin. Microbiol. 37: 4059-4064.

Specimen requirement: 0.2 ml feces, or rectal swab, or 0.2 ml whole blood in EDTA (purple top) tube, or 0.2 ml CSF, or 0.2 ml fresh, frozen or fixed brain, heart or aborted tissue.

Contact Zoologix if advice is needed to determine an appropriate specimen type for a specific diagnostic application. For specimen types not listed here, please contact Zoologix to confirm specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.

For all specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or during very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped and ship with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping requirements are specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped so as to remain frozen in transit. See shipping instructions for more information.

Turnaround time: 2 business days

Methodology: Qualitative real time PCR

Normal range: Nondetected

2003-2023 Zoologix, Inc. • Email Zoologix • Phone (818) 717-8880