EDP Sciences Journals List
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Issue Vet. Res.
Volume 38, Number 5, September-October 2007
Page(s) 697 - 710
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/vetres:2007023
Published online 23 June 2007
How to cite this article Vet. Res. (2007) 697-710

Vet. Res. 38 (2007) 697-710
DOI: 10.1051/vetres:2007023

Canine bartonellosis: serological and molecular prevalence in Brazil and evidence of co-infection with Bartonella henselae and Bartonella vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii

Pedro Paulo Vissotto De Paiva Diniza, Ricardo Guillermo Maggia, Denise Saretta Schwartzb, María Belén Cadenasa, Julie Meredith Bradleya, Barbara Hegartya and Edward Bealmear Breitschwerdta

a  Intracellular Pathogens Research Laboratory, Center for Comparative Medicine and Translational Research, Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, NC, 27606, USA
b  School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, São Paulo State University (FMVZ - UNESP), Botucatu, São Paulo, Brazil

(Received 17 November 2006; accepted 4 April 2007 ; published online 23 June 2007)

Abstract - The purpose of this study was to determine the serological and molecular prevalence of Bartonella spp. infection in a sick dog population from Brazil. At the São Paulo State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital in Botucatu, 198 consecutive dogs with clinicopathological abnormalities consistent with tick-borne infections were sampled. Antibodies to Bartonella henselae and Bartonella vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii were detected in 2.0% (4/197) and 1.5% (3/197) of the dogs, respectively. Using 16S-23S rRNA intergenic transcribed spacer (ITS) primers, Bartonella DNA was amplified from only 1/198 blood samples. Bartonella seroreactive and/or PCR positive blood samples (n=8) were inoculated into a liquid pre-enrichment growth medium (BAPGM) and subsequently sub-inoculated onto BAPGM/blood-agar plates. PCR targeting the ITS region, pap31 and rpoB genes amplified B. henselae from the blood and/or isolates of the PCR positive dog (ITS: DQ346666; pap31 gene: DQ351240; rpoB: EF196806). B. henselae and B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii (pap31: DQ906160; rpoB: EF196805) co-infection was found in one of the B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii seroreactive dogs. We conclude that dogs in this study population were infrequently exposed to or infected with a Bartonella species. The B. henselae and B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii strains identified in this study are genetically similar to strains isolated from septicemic cats, dogs, coyotes and human beings from other parts of the world. To our knowledge, these isolates provide the first Brazilian DNA sequences from these Bartonella species and the first evidence of Bartonella co-infection in dogs.


Key words: dogs / Bartonella infections / heart disease / culture / Brazil

Corresponding author: Ed_Breitschwerdt@ncsu.edu

© INRA, EDP Sciences 2007

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