Leptospira in slaughtered fattening pigs in southern Vietnam: Presence of the bacteria in the kidneys and association with morphological findings

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Centre of Reproductive Biology in Uppsala (CRU), Uppsala, Sweden.
Veterinary Microbiology (Impact Factor: 2.51). 07/2003; 93(4):361-8. DOI: 10.1016/S0378-1135(03)00042-7
Source: PubMed


One kidney was collected from each of 32 fattening pigs at an abattoir in southern Vietnam in 2001 in order to demonstrate infecting Leptospira serovar and to associate renal macro- and microscopic findings with the presence of renal leptospires. Leptospires were demonstrated in 22 (69%) of the investigated kidneys by immunofluorescence. Multifocal interstitial nephritis (MFIN) and gross renal lesions (white spots) were each demonstrated in 24 (75%) kidneys. Leptospira interrogans serovar bratislava was isolated from one kidney. There was no association between presence of leptospires and MFIN (P=0.19), respectively and white spots (P=0.98), respectively. These data suggest that Leptospira infection is common among fattening pigs in the study area and that these animals may be considered as an occupational human health hazard. It is also suggested that the presence of white spots is an unreliable indicator of the presence of renal leptospires.

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    • "The bacteriological culture did not present positive results in any sample. This technique is considered of low sensitivity, laborious and time consuming (Boqvist et al., 2003; Grooms and Bolin, 2005; Fearnley et al., 2008; Lilenbaum et al., 2009). The frequency of isolates is usually low (Azevedo et al., 2004; Lilenbaum et al., 2008; Lilenbaum et al., 2009), and possibly no positive results are obtained (Harkin et al., 2003; Fearnley et al., 2008), regardless of the species studied. "
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    ABSTRACT: Leptospirosis is an infectious disease of worldwide importance. The development of diagnostic techniques allows sick animals to be identified, reservoirs to be eliminated and the disease prevented and controlled. The present study aimed to compare different techniques for diagnosing leptospirosis in sheep. Samples of kidney, liver and blood were collected from 465 animals that originated from a slaughterhouse. The sera were analyzed by the Microscopic Agglutination Test (MAT), and kidney and liver samples of seropositive animals were analyzed using four techniques: bacteriological culture, the Warthin Starry (WS) technique, conventional PCR (cPCR), and quantitative PCR (qPCR). With the MAT, 21 animals were positive (4.5%) to serovars Hardjo (n=12), Hebdomadis (n=5), Sentot (n=2), Wolfii (n=1) and Shermani (n=1). Titers were 100 (n=10), 200 (n=2), 400 (n=6) and 1600 (n=3). No animal was positive by bacteriological culture; four animals were positive by the WS technique in kidney samples; six animals were positive by cPCR in kidney samples; and 11 animals were positive by qPCR, eight of which in kidney samples and three in liver. The bacterial quantification revealed a median of 4.3 bacteria/μL in liver samples and 36.6 bacteria/μL in kidney samples. qPCR presented the highest sensitivity among the techniques, followed by cPCR, the WS technique and bacteriological culture. These results indicate that sheep can carry leptospires of the Sejroe serogroup, and demonstrate the efficiency of quantitative PCR to detect Leptospira spp. in tissue samples.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · Journal of microbiological methods
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    • "Interstitial nephritis, commonly known as " white-spotted kidneys " , may be of infectious or non-infectious origin and according to the duration it is further classified as acute, subacute or chronic. Although this type of lesions can be caused by a variety of infectious agents, an association between interstitial nephritis and leptospirosis has been described (Baker et al 1989, Maxie 2007) but, this association is controversial (Jones et al 1987, Boqvist et al 2003). Leptospirosis is a zoonotic infectious disease caused by various serovars of Leptospira interrogans, which affect a large number of wild and domestic species. "
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    ABSTRACT: Las lesiones renales son una causa importante de decomiso en los mataderos. Además de las posibles consecuencias en salud pública, el decomiso de órganos tiene un gran impacto económico en la industria de alimento animal. Recientemente, nefritis embólica séptica con lesiones semejantes a infecciones con Actinobacillus equuli en potrillos ha sido detectada en reproductoras y cerdos con peso de mercado. Actinobacillus equuli es fenotípica y genéticamente similar a Actinobacillus suis. Ambas son bacterias Gram-negativas difíciles de diagnosticar en exámenes de rutina. A. suis es un patógeno oportunista capaz de producir septicemia en cerdos, neumonía, poliartritis, nefritis embólica séptica, aborto y fetos momificados. Brotes de la enfermedad clínica parecieran ocurrir con más frecuencia en planteles de cerdos con estrictas medidas de bioseguridad. En cerdos adultos, las lesiones de piel pueden confundirse con erisipela porcina. A. suis y A. equuli son patógenos oportunistas emergentes en la industria porcina y ambos tienen potenciales consecuencias en salud pública, principalmente en aquellas personas que manipulan productos cárneos. El objetivo de esta publicación es presentar una revisión bibliográfica sobre el rol de A. suis y A. equuli en la patogénesis de nefritis en cerdos.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2011 · Archivos de Medicina Veterinaria
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    • "For many years, one of the bacteria that has been traditionally associated with these lesions is Leptospira interrogans (Michna and Campbell, 1969; Jones et al., 1987; Baker et al., 1989), although most recent reports failed to demonstrate this association (Drolet et al., 2002; Boqvist et al., 2003). Leptospirosis is an infectious zoonosis caused by various serovars of L. interrogans sp., which affect a large number of wild and domestic species. "
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    ABSTRACT: Multifocal interstitial nephritis in pigs has been associated with several infectious agents. The objective of the present study was to investigate several different potential infectious agents associated with "white-spotted" kidneys in pigs suffering from wasting at slaughter (aged 6-8 months). Twenty-nine case kidneys (with a "white-spotted" gross appearance) classified into 3 macroscopic lesional grades, and 15 control kidneys (lacking gross lesions), were obtained from a pig abattoir. Laboratory analyses to detect potential associations with the aforementioned pathological condition with Leptospira spp., porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2), porcine parvovirus (PPV), porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV), and bacteria, were carried out. Microscopically, interstitial nephritis with a lymphofollicular inflammatory pattern (follicular nephritis) was observed in both case and control kidneys, with a higher frequency seen in the former ones. No leptospires were identified, although antibodies to the Pomona and Bratislava serovars were detected. Some pyogenic bacteria were also isolated from both case and control kidneys. PCV2 nucleic acid was only detected in 1 case kidney. PRRSV antigen was not found in any tested sample. Some pigs were tested positive for PPV by serology. Apparently, none of the studied agents were specifically associated as being the potential cause of the renal lesions in the studied wasted pigs. The fact that these chronic lesions may have been the consequence of a previous infection with one of these studied microorganisms, or more, and eventually with other non-tested infectious agents during the growing-finishing period, cannot be ruled out.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2006 · Research in Veterinary Science
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