Korean J Infect Dis.  2001 Oct;33(5):319-324.

The Prevalence of Bartonella henselae Infection in Korean Feral Cats

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Inha University School of Medicine, Inchon, Korea.
  • 2Department of Microbiology, Inha University School of Medicine, Inchon, Korea.
  • 3Department of Pathology, Inha University School of Medicine, Inchon, Korea.

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Cat scratch disease (CSD) is an emerging disease worldwide and is mainly caused by Bartonella henselae, a gram-negative bacterium. The most common clinical manifestation is regional lymphadenopathy, though clinical recognition may be difficult, as atypical manifestations occur. The condition can be complicated by neuroretinitis, endocarditis, and sometimes fatal encephalopathy. The reservoir of B. henselae is the cat, and the prevalence rates of B. henselae infection in cat populations range from 4 to 70%. The prevalence of Bartonella infection in Korea has not been studied, thus, in this study Bartonella infection was investigated in cats captured in the Inchon and Ansan areas. METHODS: Twenty wild cats were captured and their livers and spleens were examined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), bacterial culture, and histopathologically. PCR used two primers: Cat (sense:5'-GAT TCA ATT GGT TTG AA(G/A) GAG GCT-3', antisense:5'-TCA CAT CAC CAG G(A/G)C GTA TTC- 3') and Barto (sense:5'-(C/T) CT TCG TTT CTC TTT CTT CA-3', antisense:5'-AAC CAA CTG AGC TAC AAG CC-3'). Culture was performed by inoculating sliced spleen and liver into the ECV304 cell line and bacterial growth was observed over a period of 3 weeks. If no visible bacterial growth was identified, the presence of bartonella was examined by DNA staining, indirect immunofluorescent staining, and PCR. Liver and spleen were stained with H&E and scrutinized under the light microscope. RESULTS: Nine pairs of culture cells inoculated with liver and spleen were examined by indirect immunofluorescent staining and PCR; no positive case was found. In addition, no positive case was identified by PCR in the liver and spleen specimens of eleven cats. Spleen and liver specimens of eleven cats were examined by light microscopy and none showed granuloma. CONCLUSION: This preliminary study suggests that the Bartonella infection is probably uncommon in the cat population of the Inchon and Ansan areas. Further studies should be undertaken to detail the prevalence of Bartonella infection in other areas and in human.

Keyword

Bartonella henselae; Cat; Inchon; Ansan

MeSH Terms

Animals
Bartonella henselae*
Bartonella Infections
Bartonella*
Cat-Scratch Disease
Cats*
Cell Line
DNA
Endocarditis
Granuloma
Gyeonggi-do
Humans
Incheon
Korea
Liver
Lymphatic Diseases
Microscopy
Polymerase Chain Reaction
Prevalence*
Retinitis
Spleen
DNA
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