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Anaerobe. 2019 Aug;58:22-29. doi: 10.1016/j.anaerobe.2019.06.007. Epub 2019 Jun 17.

Characterization of Clostridioides difficile ribotypes in domestic dogs in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

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Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, IMPG, Depto. de Microbiologia Médica, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Clínica Veterinária VetCare, Flamengo, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Universidade Severino Sombra, Pro Reitoria de Pesquisa e Pós Graduação, Vassouras, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Universidade Federal Fluminense, Depto. de Microbiologia Veterinária, Niterói, Brazil.
University of Houston College of Pharmacy, 4849 Calhoun Road, Houston, TX, 77204, USA.
Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, IMPG, Depto. de Microbiologia Médica, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Electronic address:


Clostridioides difficile is the major etiologic agent of nosocomial bacterial diarrhoea and pseudomembranous colitis. The pathogenesis of C. difficile infection (CDI)involves two cytotoxic enzymes (TcdA, TcdB) that cause colonic epithelial damage, fluid accumulation and enteritis. CDI has been demonstrated in a variety of animal species and some reports have recently raised the importance of wild animals as a reservoir of this pathogen and possible transmission to humans and domestic animals. The aim of this study was to characterize C. difficile isolates obtained from pet dogs in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A total of 50 faecal samples were obtained from healthy and diarrheic dogs. Five of fifty samples (10%) grew C. difficile. Of those, three belonged to the PCR ribotype 106 (ST 42) and were toxigenic (A+B+). The other two strains belonged to the PCR ribotype 010 (ST 15) and were not toxin producers (A-B-). None of the isolates tested positive for the binary toxin genes. Considering the antimicrobial resistance patterns of all isolates using EUCAST breakpoints, all strains were sensitive to metronidazole and vancomycin. However, two strains (ribotype 106 and ribotype 010), were resistant to clindamycin (≤256 μg/mL). All strains were strong biofilm producers. Our study provides evidence that dogs can act as reservoirs for C. difficile epidemic ribotypes.


Brazil; CDI; Clostridioides difficile; Dogs; Epidemiology

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