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Background: The southern African yellow dog tick, Haemaphysalis elliptica, occurs in eastern and southern Africa and adults infest domestic and wild carnivores. This tick species is also a vector of the highly virulent Babesia rossi pathogen, the causative agent of canine babesiosis in sub-Saharan Africa. Sustained high levels of efficacy of a parasiticide are not only important in protecting dogs against the direct effects of tick infestation, but also in reducing the risk of tick-borne diseases. Sarolaner (Simparica™ chewable tablets) has been reported to be effective against the major tick species infesting dogs in Europe and the USA, including representatives from the genera Amblyomma, Ixodes, Rhipicephalus and Dermacentor. Until now no efficacy evaluations have been reported against species of the genus Haemaphysalis. The objective of the study was to confirm the efficacy of a single 2 mg sarolaner/kg oral dose of Simparica™ against induced infestations with H. (R.) elliptica, an important parasite of dogs in southern Africa. Methods: This blinded, randomised, single centre, placebo controlled efficacy study followed a parallel group design and was conducted on two groups consisting of eight purpose-bred dogs each. Animals were treated orally, once on Day 0, with either a placebo compound (Group 1) or Simparica™ (Group 2). Simparica™ was administered orally at a dose rate of 2 mg sarolaner/kg body weight. The dogs were infested with ticks on Days - 7, - 2, 5, 12, 19, 26 and 33, with removal counts conducted on Days - 5, 2, 7, 14, 21, 28 and 35. Results: A single oral administration of Simparica™ (sarolaner) at a minimum dose of 2 mg/kg resulted in a 100% efficacy against existing infestations of H. (R.) elliptica on dogs and a 100% reduction in live ticks following weekly re-infestations for 35 days. Moreover, the immediate and persistent high levels of efficacy observed in this study for 35 days is consistent with those observed in previous studies against ticks in other genera. Conclusions: The efficacy of sarolaner (Simparica™), administered orally to dogs at the minimum label dose of 2.0 mg/kg, was demonstrated against existing and weekly re-infestations of H. (R.) elliptica for at least 5 weeks. Efficacy of 100% was achieved against existing infestations as well as weekly re-infestations.
Fourie, J. J., Liebenberg, J. E., Crafford, D., & Six, R. (2019). Immediate and persistent efficacy of sarolaner (SimparicaTM) against Haemaphysalis elliptica on dogs. Parasites and Vectors, 12(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-019-3696-0