Prevalence of selected cardiotropic pathogens in the myocardium of adult dogs with unexplained myocardial and rhythm disorders or with congenital heart disease

Roberto A. Santilli 1Dipartimento di Cardiologia, Clinica Veterinaria Malpensa, Via Marconi, 27, 21017 Samarate, Varese, Italy

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Elena Grego 2Dipartimento di Scienze Veterinarie, L'Universita di Torino, Grugliasco, Torino, Italy

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Stefano Battaia 3Ospedale Veterinario I Portoni Rossi, Via Roma, 57/a, 40069 Zola Predosa, Bologna, Italy

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Paola Gianella 2Dipartimento di Scienze Veterinarie, L'Universita di Torino, Grugliasco, Torino, Italy

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Massimiliano Tursi 2Dipartimento di Scienze Veterinarie, L'Universita di Torino, Grugliasco, Torino, Italy

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Nicola Di Girolamo 4EBMVet, Via Sigismondo Trecchi 20, 26100 Cremona, Italy

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Ilaria Biasato 2Dipartimento di Scienze Veterinarie, L'Universita di Torino, Grugliasco, Torino, Italy

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Manuela Perego 1Dipartimento di Cardiologia, Clinica Veterinaria Malpensa, Via Marconi, 27, 21017 Samarate, Varese, Italy

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To determine the prevalence of nucleic acid from selected cardiotropic pathogens in endomyocardial biopsy samples from dogs with unexplained myocardial and rhythm disorders (UMRD) and compare prevalence with that for a group of control dogs with congenital heart disease (CHD).

ANIMALS

47 client-owned dogs.

PROCEDURES

Right ventricular endomyocardial biopsy was performed in dogs with UMRD (dilated cardiomyopathy [n = 25], atrioventricular block [6], and nonfamilial ventricular [4] and supraventricular arrhythmias [2]) or CHD (10) that required right ventricular catheterization. Biopsy samples were evaluated histologically, and PCR assays were used for detection of nucleic acid from 12 pathogens.

RESULTS

197 biopsy samples were collected from dogs with UMRD (n = 172) or CHD (25). At least 1 pathogen was detected in 21 of 37 (57%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 41% to 71%) dogs with UMRD, and canine coronavirus was detected in 1 of 10 (10%; 95% CI, 2% to 40%) dogs with CHD. Dogs with UMRD were significantly more likely than dogs with CHD to have pathogens detected in biopsy samples (OR, 11.8; 95% CI, 1.3 to 103.0). The most common pathogens in dogs with UMRD were canine distemper virus, canine coronavirus, canine parvovirus 2, and Bartonella spp. No pathogens were detected in available blood samples from dogs with pathogens detected in biopsy samples.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Detection of nucleic acids from selected cardiotropic pathogens in myocardial tissue from dogs with UMRD suggested a possible association between the 2. Further studies are needed to explore whether this association is causative or clinically important. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2019;255:1150–1160)

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To determine the prevalence of nucleic acid from selected cardiotropic pathogens in endomyocardial biopsy samples from dogs with unexplained myocardial and rhythm disorders (UMRD) and compare prevalence with that for a group of control dogs with congenital heart disease (CHD).

ANIMALS

47 client-owned dogs.

PROCEDURES

Right ventricular endomyocardial biopsy was performed in dogs with UMRD (dilated cardiomyopathy [n = 25], atrioventricular block [6], and nonfamilial ventricular [4] and supraventricular arrhythmias [2]) or CHD (10) that required right ventricular catheterization. Biopsy samples were evaluated histologically, and PCR assays were used for detection of nucleic acid from 12 pathogens.

RESULTS

197 biopsy samples were collected from dogs with UMRD (n = 172) or CHD (25). At least 1 pathogen was detected in 21 of 37 (57%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 41% to 71%) dogs with UMRD, and canine coronavirus was detected in 1 of 10 (10%; 95% CI, 2% to 40%) dogs with CHD. Dogs with UMRD were significantly more likely than dogs with CHD to have pathogens detected in biopsy samples (OR, 11.8; 95% CI, 1.3 to 103.0). The most common pathogens in dogs with UMRD were canine distemper virus, canine coronavirus, canine parvovirus 2, and Bartonella spp. No pathogens were detected in available blood samples from dogs with pathogens detected in biopsy samples.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Detection of nucleic acids from selected cardiotropic pathogens in myocardial tissue from dogs with UMRD suggested a possible association between the 2. Further studies are needed to explore whether this association is causative or clinically important. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2019;255:1150–1160)

Supplementary Materials

    • Supplementary Appendix S1 (PDF 18 kb)
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