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Use of combined conventional and real-time PCR to determine the epidemiology of feline haemoplasma infections in northern Italy


Gentilini, F; Novacco, M; Turba, M E; Willi, B; Bacci, M L; Hofmann-Lehmann, R (2009). Use of combined conventional and real-time PCR to determine the epidemiology of feline haemoplasma infections in northern Italy. Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery, 11(4):277-285.

Abstract

Although knowledge of feline haemotropic mycoplasmas (haemoplasmas) has dramatically improved in recent years, some issues still remain to be elucidated. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the prevalence of feline haemoplasma infections in blood samples collected from cats in northern Italy. A convenience-sample of 307 cats (40 anaemic; 258 non-anaemic; nine with unknown haematocrit [HCT]) was investigated using polymerase chain reaction assays. Furthermore, the date of blood collection, signalment and clinicopathological data were retrospectively evaluated to assess predictors and risk factors for infection. Haemoplasma infections were highly prevalent in the sample investigated with an overall prevalence of 18.9% (95% confidence interval: 14.5-23.3%). The prevalence for the three feline haemoplasmas was 17.3% for 'Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum' (CMhm), 5.9% for Mycoplasma haemofelis (Mhf) and 1.3% for 'Candidatus Mycoplasma turicensis' (CMt). Feline immunodeficiency virus-positive status represented a risk factor for infection with an odds ratio of 4.19 (P=0.02). Moreover, a higher prevalence was observed in summer (odds ratio 1.78; P=0.04) which may be consistent with arthropod-borne disease transmission. Cats infected with Mhf showed significantly lower HCT (P=0.03), haemoglobin values (P=0.02) and red blood cell counts (P=0.04), lower mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (P<0.01) and higher white blood cell counts (P<0.01) when compared with non-infected cats.

Abstract

Although knowledge of feline haemotropic mycoplasmas (haemoplasmas) has dramatically improved in recent years, some issues still remain to be elucidated. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the prevalence of feline haemoplasma infections in blood samples collected from cats in northern Italy. A convenience-sample of 307 cats (40 anaemic; 258 non-anaemic; nine with unknown haematocrit [HCT]) was investigated using polymerase chain reaction assays. Furthermore, the date of blood collection, signalment and clinicopathological data were retrospectively evaluated to assess predictors and risk factors for infection. Haemoplasma infections were highly prevalent in the sample investigated with an overall prevalence of 18.9% (95% confidence interval: 14.5-23.3%). The prevalence for the three feline haemoplasmas was 17.3% for 'Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum' (CMhm), 5.9% for Mycoplasma haemofelis (Mhf) and 1.3% for 'Candidatus Mycoplasma turicensis' (CMt). Feline immunodeficiency virus-positive status represented a risk factor for infection with an odds ratio of 4.19 (P=0.02). Moreover, a higher prevalence was observed in summer (odds ratio 1.78; P=0.04) which may be consistent with arthropod-borne disease transmission. Cats infected with Mhf showed significantly lower HCT (P=0.03), haemoglobin values (P=0.02) and red blood cell counts (P=0.04), lower mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (P<0.01) and higher white blood cell counts (P<0.01) when compared with non-infected cats.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Veterinary Clinic > Department of Small Animals
05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Veterinary Clinic > Department of Farm Animals
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
630 Agriculture
Language:English
Date:April 2009
Deposited On:18 Feb 2009 14:14
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:03
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:1098-612X
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jfms.2008.06.008
PubMed ID:18790658

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