Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection in dogs: 34 cases (2000-2007).
ABSTRACT OBJECTIVE- To determine demographic characteristics of dogs from the upper Midwest infected with Anaplasma phagocytophilum and identify clinical and clinicopathologic abnormalities and response to treatment. DESIGN- Retrospective case series and owner telephone survey. ANIMALS- 34 dogs with granulocytic anaplasmosis. PROCEDURES- Records were reviewed for information on signalment, history, physical examination findings, clinicopathologic and serologic findings, and treatment. Owners were contacted by telephone within 4 months after dogs were discharged. RESULTS- Median age was 8 years. Distribution of month of diagnosis was bimodal, with 15 dogs examined during May or June and 11 others examined during October or November. Camping and hiking were the most frequently reported tick exposure activities. Lethargy (25/34) and anorexia (21/34) were the most common initial complaints, fever was the most common clinical sign (27/32), and thrombocytopenia was the most common clinicopathologic abnormality (21/22). Fifteen of 20 dogs were seropositive for antibodies against A phagocytophilum. Doxycycline was prescribed for 31 dogs, and clinical signs and fever resolved within 3 to 5 days. Median time for platelet count to return to reference limits was 7 days. No owners reported clinical sequelae when contacted after dogs were discharged. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE- Results suggested that granulocytic anaplasmosis should be suspected in dogs in endemic areas examined because of fever, lethargy, or thrombocytopenia, especially in dogs examined during the late spring or early fall. Treatment with doxycycline was successful in resolving clinical signs and thrombocytopenia.
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ABSTRACT: We used PCR and a novel serologic assay to determine infection and exposure rates to Ehrlichia ewingii in dogs from an area of northeast Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas where Amblyomma americanum ticks are abundant. Of 143 dogs assayed, 13 (9.1%) harbored E. ewingii by PCR and 64 (44.8%) had antibodies to E. ewingii detected using a peptide-based microtiter plate ELISA. Dogs were more likely (P=0.001) to be positive by PCR if sampled in August (30.8%) but no association was found between seropositive status and month of collection of sample (P>0.05). Additional testing revealed PCR evidence of Ehrlichia chaffeensis (4/143; 2.8%) and Anaplasma platys (5/143; 3.5%) as well as antibodies reactive to E. chaffeensis (25/143; 17.5%), Ehrlichia canis (2/143; 1.4%), and Anaplasma spp. (8/143; 5.6%). Testing of another 200 dogs from the area revealed additional PCR and/or serologic evidence of E. ewingii, E. canis, E. chaffeensis, and A. platys. None of the 343 dogs evaluated had evidence of Borrelia burgdorferi exposure. These data support the interpretation that E. ewingii may be the primary agent of canine ehrlichiosis in this region, and suggest that diagnostic evaluation of dogs suspected to have a tick-borne disease should include assays targeting this organism.Veterinary Parasitology 09/2010; 172(3-4):355-60. · 2.38 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Canine granulocytic anaplasmosis (CGA) is caused by the rickettsial microorganism Anaplasma phagocytophilum. CGA is typically characterized by fever, thrombocytopenia, lethargy, anorexia, arthropy, and other nonspecific clinical signs. Skin lesions have been described in naturally infected lambs and humans. The pathophysiology of CGA is not entirely clear, and the persistence of the organism after the resolution of clinical signs has been described. The aim of the study was to investigate if A. phagocytophilum can be detected in canine lesional skin biopsies from A. phagocytophilum-seropositive dogs with etiologically unclear skin lesions that improved after the treatment with doxycycline. Paraffin-embedded lesional skin biopsies were allocated into separate groups: biopsies from A. phagocytophilum-seropositive dogs responsive to treatment with doxycycline (n = 12), biopsies from A. phagocytophilum-seronegative dogs (n = 2), and biopsies in which skin lesions histopathologically resembled a tick bite (n = 10). The serological status of the latter group was unknown. Histology of the seropositive and seronegative dog skin lesions did not indicate an etiology. DNA was extracted, and a conventional PCR for partial 16S rRNA gene was performed. Anaplasma phagocytophilum DNA was amplified from 4/12 seropositive dogs’ skin biopsies. All sequences were 100% identical to the prototype A. phagocytophilum human strain (GenBank accession number U02521). Anaplasma phagocytophilum was not amplified from the 2 seronegative and 10 suspected tick bite dogs. Serum antibody titers of the PCR-positive dogs ranged from 1:200 to 1:2048. Histopathologically, a mild-to-moderate perivascular to interstitial dermatitis composed of a mixed cellular infiltrate and mild-to-moderate edema was seen in all seropositive dogs. In 8/12 seropositive dogs, vascular changes as vasculopathy, fibrinoid necrosis of the vessel walls, and leukocytoclastic changes were observed. In summary, our results support the hypothesis that the persistence of A. phagocytophilum in the skin may be causative for otherwise unexplained skin lesions in seropositive dogs.Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases 01/2014; · 2.35 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum has for decades been known to cause the disease tick-borne fever (TBF) in domestic ruminants in Ixodes ricinus-infested areas in northern Europe. In recent years, the bacterium has been found associated with Ixodes-tick species more or less worldwide on the northern hemisphere. A. phagocytophilum has a broad host range and may cause severe disease in several mammalian species, including humans. However, the clinical symptoms vary from subclinical to fatal conditions, and considerable underreporting of clinical incidents is suspected in both human and veterinary medicine. Several variants of A. phagocytophilum have been genetically characterized. Identification and stratification into phylogenetic subfamilies has been based on cell culturing, experimental infections, PCR, and sequencing techniques. However, few genome sequences have been completed so far, thus observations on biological, ecological, and pathological differences between genotypes of the bacterium, have yet to be elucidated by molecular and experimental infection studies. The natural transmission cycles of various A. phagocytophilum variants, the involvement of their respective hosts and vectors involved, in particular the zoonotic potential, have to be unraveled. A. phagocytophilum is able to persist between seasons of tick activity in several mammalian species and movement of hosts and infected ticks on migrating animals or birds may spread the bacterium. In the present review, we focus on the ecology and epidemiology of A. phagocytophilum, especially the role of wildlife in contribution to the spread and sustainability of the infection in domestic livestock and humans.Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology 01/2013; 3:31. · 2.62 Impact Factor