Objective—To develop a PCR assay for Candidatus Mycoplasma haemolamae (CMhl) infection in alpacas and use it to study the efficacy of oxytetracycline treatment and development of a subclinical carrier state.
Animals—8 healthy adult alpacas.
Procedures—Alpacas initially had negative results for CMhl in blood samples via PCR assay and were experimentally infected with CMhl; 4 were treated with oxytetracycline, and 4 were not treated. All were monitored regularly via PCR assay, blood smear examination, PCV, rectal temperature, and physical examination. At 6 months after treatment, all alpacas were immunosuppressed by administration of dexamethasone and tested for CMhl.
Results—7 of 8 alpacas had positive PCR assay results 4 to 6 days after experimental infection. When organisms were detectable on a blood smear, they were seen 2 to 6 days after positive results of PCR assay. Infection was often associated with mild anemia that was usually transient. No alpacas became hypoglycemic. Oxytetracycline treatment was not associated with faster clearance of organisms or resolution of anemia, and 4 of 4 treated alpacas still had positive results of PCR assay when immunosuppressed 6 months later; 0 of 3 nontreated alpacas had positive results of PCR assay following immunosuppression. Transient fever was detected in 3 alpacas during immunosuppression.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The PCR assay was more sensitive than blood smear examination for detection of infection. Clinical signs, anemia, and fever were not necessarily associated with infection. Oxytetracyline administration did not consistently clear CMhl infection. Although treated with oxytetracycline, infected alpacas remained chronic carriers.
OBJECTIVE To develop and validate a real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay for the detection and quantification of Mycoplasma ovis in goats and investigate the prevalence and risk factors for hemoplasma infection of goats located in Indiana.
ANIMALS 362 adult female goats on 61 farms.
PROCEDURES Primers were designed for amplification of a fragment of the dnaK gene of M ovis by use of a qPCR assay. Blood samples were collected into EDTA-containing tubes for use in total DNA extraction, blood film evaluation, and determination of PCV. Limit of detection, intra-assay variability, interassay variability, and specificity of the assay were determined.
RESULTS Reaction efficiency of the qPCR assay was 94.45% (R2, 0.99; slope, −3.4623), and the assay consistently detected as few as 10 copies of plasmid/reaction. Prevalence of infection in goats on the basis of results for the qPCR assay was 18.0% (95% confidence interval, 14% to 22%), with infected goats ranging from 1 to 14 years old, whereby 61% (95% confidence interval, 47% to 73%) of the farms had at least 1 infected goat. Bacterial load in goats infected with M ovis ranged from 1.05 × 103 target copies/mL of blood to 1.85 × 105 target copies/mL of blood; however, no bacteria were observed on blood films. Production use of a goat was the only risk factor significantly associated with hemoplasma infection.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE The qPCR assay was more sensitive for detecting hemoplasma infection than was evaluation of a blood film, and production use of a goat was a risk factor for infection.
Objective—To determine reference ranges for results
of hematologic analyses of healthy Belgian Tervuren,
to compare results of hematologic analyses for
healthy Belgian Tervuren with results for healthy dogs
of other breeds, and to determine prevalence of physiologic
leukopenia in Belgian Tervuren.
Animals—180 healthy Belgian Tervuren and 63
healthy dogs of other breeds.
Procedure—Blood samples were analyzed by use of
an automated device. Reference ranges were calculated
for Belgian Tervuren by use of standard methods.
Results—Total WBC counts of Belgian Tervuren ranged
from 2.61 to 16.90 X 103/µl. Mean WBC count of
Belgian Tervuren (mean ± SEM, 7.04 ± 0.16 X 103/µl)
was significantly lower than mean count for control
dogs. Significantly more Belgian Tervuren (65/180;
36%) than control dogs (2/63; 3%) had WBC counts
< 6.00 X 103/µl. Percentage of Belgian Tervuren with
WBC count < 6.00 X 103/µl was low for dogs ≤ 2 years
old, increased sharply for dogs between 2 and 4 years
old, and was approximately 65% for dogs > 4 years
old. Neutrophil, lymphocyte, and monocyte counts
were significantly lower, and RBC count, hematocrit,
and eosinophil fraction were significantly higher in
Belgian Tervuren than in control dogs.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest
that physiologic leukopenia, resulting from low
numbers of neutrophils, lymphocytes, and monocytes,
may be a typical finding in a large percentage
of healthy Belgian Tervuren and is not of clinical
importance in otherwise healthy dogs. Healthy
Belgian Tervuren may also have RBC counts and
hematocrits higher than expected for healthy dogs.( J
Am Vet Med Assoc 2000;216:866–871)
Objective—To characterize clinical signs, clinicopathologic features, treatments, and survival in dogs with naturally acquired foodborne aflatoxicosis.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Animals—72 dogs that consumed aflatoxin-contaminated commercial dog food.
Procedures—Medical records of affected dogs were reviewed. Between December 2005 and March 2006, dogs were identified as having foodborne aflatoxin hepatotoxicosis on the basis of the history of consumption of contaminated food or characteristic histopathologic lesions (subject dog or a recently deceased dog in the same household or kennel). Recorded information included signalment, clinical features, clinicopathologic test results, treatments, and survival. Data were analyzed by survival status.
Results—Most dogs were of large breeds from breeding kennels. No significant differences were found in age or weight between 26 (36%) survivor dogs and 46 (64%) nonsurvivor dogs. Severity of clinical signs varied widely; 7 dogs died abruptly. In order of onset, clinical features included anorexia, lethargy, vomiting, jaundice, diarrhea (melena, hematochezia), abdominal effusion, peripheral edema, and terminal encephalopathy and hemorrhagic diathesis. Common clinicopathologic features included coagulopathic and electrolyte disturbances, hypoproteinemia, increased serum liver enzyme activities, hyperbilirubinemia, and hypocholesterolemia. Cytologic hepatocellular lipid vacuolation was confirmed in 11 dogs examined. In comparisons of clinicopathologic test results between survivor and nonsurvivor dogs, only granular cylindruria (7/21 dogs) consistently predicted death. Best early markers of aflatoxicosis were low plasma activities of anticoagulant proteins (protein C, antithrombin) and hypocholesterolemia. Despite aggressive treatment, many but not all severely affected dogs died.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Serum liver enzyme activities and bilirubin concentration were unreliable early markers of aflatoxin hepatotoxicosis in dogs. Hypocholesterolemia and decreased plasma protein C and antithrombin activities may function as exposure biomarkers.