Non-tsetse transmitted animal trypanosomoses result from infection by Trypanosoma evansi, T. equiprdum and T. vivax. An example is camel trypanosomiasis, which is caused by the protozoan Trypanosoma evansi. Known more commonly as surra, the disease is extremely debilitating and a major cause of morbidity of up to 30%, and mortality of around 3% in camels. Estimates of direct impact of the disease are over US$126 million annually. 

Surra is transmitted non-cyclically by haematophagus flies is endemic in Africa, Middle East countries, Asia and South America. Available information on the prevalence of surra caused by T. evansi is: Nigeria (27%), Chad (30%), Mauritania (24%), Niger (29%), Kenya (48-95%), Ethiopia (21%), Sudan (33%), Somalia (58%), Morocco (34.5 % in Tafilalet and 43.3% in Ouarzazate provinces), Egypt (81%), Jordan (33%), Iraq (47%), Iran (10%), United Arab Emirates (8-14%), India (22%), Pakistan (14%), South America (27%).

There are also numerous serious problems in the management of surra related to widespread drug resistance, poor diagnosis, high treatment costs, and poor availability of drugs in areas where the problem exists. In practice, many animals simply die when they become infected. Without doubt, T.evansi has the largest production/economic impact of all vector-borne diseases in camels. It also has the widest geographical distribution.

For further information, contact:

Dan Masiga (dmasiga@icipe.org)