Oertzenweg 19 b
+49 30 838 62356
Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the causative agent of canine granulocytic anaplasmosis, is an obligatory intracellular bacterium transmitted by Ixodes ticks. Transmission via blood transfusion has rarely been described in human medicine and once in a dog. In the Berlin/Brandenburg area the seroprevalence rate in dogs was 43% regardless of health status. The aim of this study was to evaluate PCR screening results for A. phagocytophilum in canine blood donors between 2006-2012 in order to estimate the risk of transfusiontransmitted infection. 917 EDTA blood samples from 517 dogs were submitted for A. phagocytophilum real-time PCR testing (targeting the msp2-gene). Altogether 158 dogs were tested up to 11 times. Clinical and laboratory data were examined before each donation. Statistical analysis was performed using SPSS 17.0. The PCR test was positive for 21 of the 917 samples. None of the dogs tested PCR positive more than once. Positive results were most often detected in June (8), May (5), and July (3), but also in five other months. In three dogs a mild increased in rectal temperature (≥ 39,0°C) was documented. Mild laboratory abnormalities were noted in 11 dogs: thrombocytopenia (3), leukocytosis (2), leukopenia (2), anemia (1) and hyperproteinemia (6/18); four dogs had more than one abnormality. There was no significant difference between the PCR negative and positive blood samples in regard to laboratory abnormalities. Altogether, 2.3% of blood samples from healthy canine blood donors were PCR positive for A. phagocytophilum. Therefore, blood donors should be screened by PCR in endemic areas all year round.