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  • Author or Editor: Michael R. Lappin x
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Objective—To identify the prevalence of DNA of Mycoplasma haemofelis; ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum’; Anaplasma phagocytophilum; and species of Bartonella, Neorickettsia, and Ehrlichia in blood of cats used as blood donors in the United States. Design—Prospective study.

Animals—146 cats that were active blood donors.

Procedures—Environmental history was requested for each blood-donor cat from which a blood sample (mixed with EDTA) was available. Polymerase chain reaction assays capable of amplifying the DNA of the microorganisms of interest following DNA extraction from blood were performed.

Results—Overall, DNA of one or more of the infectious agents was detected in blood samples from 16 of 146 (11%) feline blood donors. Twenty-eight laboratory-reared cats housed in a teaching hospital had negative results for DNA of all organisms investigated. The DNA of at least 1 infectious agent was amplified from blood samples collected from 16 of 118 (13.6%) community-source cats; assay results were positive for ‘Candidatus M haemominutum,’ M haemofelis, or Bartonella henselae alone or in various combinations. Of the community-source cats allowed outdoors (n = 61) or with known flea exposure (44), DNA for a hemoplasma or B henselae was detected in 21.3% and 22.7%, respectively.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—When community-source cats, cats allowed outdoors, or cats exposed to fleas are to be used as blood donors, they should be regularly assessed for infection with M haemofelis,Candidatus M haemominutum,’ and Bartonella spp, and flea-control treatment should be regularly provided.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association