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Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2003 Nov;33(6):1453-65.

New perspectives about Hemotrophic mycoplasma (formerly, Haemobartonella and Eperythrozoon species) infections in dogs and cats.

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  • 1Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, University of Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine, 1008 Hazelwood Drive, Urbana, IL 61807, USA.


The new perspectives about hemotrophic mycoplasma infections in cats and dogs can be summarized as follows: Haemobartonella and Eperythrozoon species infecting the dog and cat have been reclassified as mycoplasmal parasites and given the names M haemofelis (Ohio or large form of H felis), M haemominutum (California or small form of H felis), and M haemocanis (H canis). The prevalence of hemotrophic mycoplasma infections in anemic cats in the United States is about 25% and usually involves M haemofelis. However, nonanemic cats may also be infected most commonly with M haemominutum. Chronic infections with hemotrophic mycoplasmas may promote myeloproliferative disorders in FeLV-infected cats. M haemocanis infection in dogs may be a widespread latent disease in kennel-raised dogs and is being investigated. The PCR assay is exquisitely sensitive for detection of M haemofelis and M haemominutum, and testing of blood donor cats and perhaps dogs should be done regularly. Fleas are involved in the transmission of M haemofelis to the cat, whereas R sanguines may be involved with transmission of M haemocanis to the dog. Treatment with doxycycline effectively controls acute infection in the cat and dog, and enrofloxacin may also be effective in the cat, but none of the antibiotics tested to date consistently clears the parasites.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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