Fachbereich Veterinärmedizin



    Does a Feline Leukemia Virus Infection Pave the Way for Bartonella Henselae Infection in Cats? (2010)

    Zeitschriftenartikel / wissenschaftlicher Beitrag
    Buchmann, Alexandra U
    Kershaw, Olivia
    Kempf, Volkhard A J
    Gruber, Achim D
    Journal of clinical microbiology; 48(9) — S. 3295–3300
    ISSN: 0095-1137
    DOI: 10.1128/JCM.00750-10
    Pubmed: 20610682
    Institut für Tierpathologie

    Robert-von-Ostertag-Str. 15
    Gebäude 12
    14163 Berlin
    +49 30 838 62450

    Abstract / Zusammenfassung

    Domestic cats serve as the reservoir hosts of Bartonella henselae and may develop mild clinical symptoms or none after experimental infection. In humans, B. henselae infection can result in self-limiting cat scratch disease. However, immunocompromised patients may suffer from more-severe courses of infection or may even develop the potentially lethal disease bacillary angiomatosis. It was reasoned that cats with immunocompromising viral infections may react similarly to B. henselae infection. The aim of our study was to investigate the influence of the most important viruses known to cause immunosuppression in cats-Feline leukemia virus (FeLV), Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), and Feline panleukopenia virus (FPV)-on natural B. henselae infection in cats. Accordingly, 142 cats from animal shelters were necropsied and tested for B. henselae and concurrent infections with FeLV, FIV, or FPV by PCR and immunohistochemistry. A significant association was found between B. henselae and FeLV infections (P = 0.00028), but not between B. henselae and FIV (P = 1.0) or FPV (P = 0.756) infection, age (P = 0.392), or gender (P = 0.126). The results suggest that susceptibility to B. henselae infection is higher in cats with concurrent FeLV infections, regardless of whether the infection is latent or progressive. Histopathology and immunohistochemistry for B. henselae failed to identify lesions that could be attributed specifically to B. henselae infection. We conclude that the course of natural B. henselae infection in cats does not seem to be influenced by immunosuppressive viral infections in general but that latent FeLV infection may predispose cats to B. henselae infection or persistence.