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Edward B Breitschwerdt – 1st expert on this subject based on the ideXlab platform

  • Candidatus Bartonella merieuxii, a Potential New Zoonotic Bartonella Species in Canids from Iraq
    PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 2012
    Co-Authors: Bruno B Chomel, Rickie W Kasten, Matthew J. Stuckey, Audrey C. Mcmillan-cole, Shingo Sato, Soichi Maruyama, Pedro Paulo Vissotto De Paiva Diniz, Edward B Breitschwerdt


    Bartonellae are emerging vector-borne pathogens infecting erythrocytes and endothelial cells of various domestic and wild mammals. Blood samples were collected from domestic and wild canids in Iraq under the United States Army zoonotic disease surveillance program. Serology was performed using an indirect immunofluorescent antibody test for B. henselae, B. clarridgeiae, B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii and B. bovis. Overall seroprevalence was 47.4% in dogs (n=97), 40.4% in jackals (n=57) and 12.8% in red foxes (n=39). Bartonella species DNA was amplified from whole blood and representative strains were sequenced. DNA of a new Bartonella species similar to but distinct from B. bovis, was amplified from 37.1% of the dogs and 12.3% of the jackals. B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii was also amplified from one jackal and no Bartonella DNA was amplified from foxes. Adjusting for age, the odds of dogs being Bartonella PCR positive were 11.94 times higher than for wild canids (95% CI: 4.55–31.35), suggesting their role as reservoir for this new Bartonella species. This study reports on the prevalence of Bartonella species in domestic and wild canids of Iraq and provides the first detection of Bartonella in jackals. We propose Candidatus Bartonella merieuxii for this new Bartonella species. Most of the Bartonella species identified in sick dogs are also pathogenic for humans. Therefore, seroprevalence in Iraqi dog owners and bacteremia in Iraqi people with unexplained fever or culture negative endocarditis requires further investigation as well as in United States military personnel who were stationed in Iraq. Finally, it will also be essential to test any dog brought back from Iraq to the USA for presence of Bartonella bacteremia to prevent any accidental introduction of a new Bartonella species to the New World.

  • Experimental Infection of Horses with Bartonella henselae and Bartonella bovis
    Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 2012
    Co-Authors: J. Palmero, Henrijean Boulouis, Edward B Breitschwerdt, Rickie W Kasten, Natalie A Cherry, Nicola Pusterla, Samantha Mapes, Bruno B Chomel



    Experimental infection of horses with Bartonella species is not documented.


    Determine clinical signs, hematologic changes, duration of bacteremia, and pattern of seroconversion in Bartonella henselae or Bartonella bovis-inoculated horses.


    Twelve (2 groups of 6) randomly selected healthy adult horses seronegative and culture negative for Bartonella spp.


    Experimental/observational study: Group I: B. henselae or saline control was inoculated intradermally into 4 naive and 2 sentinel horses, respectively. Group II: same design was followed by means of B. bovis. Daily physical examinations, once weekly CBC, immunofluorescent antibody assay serology, real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and twice weekly blood cultures were performed for 6 weeks and at postinoculation day 80 and 139. Bartonella alpha-Proteobacteria growth medium (BAPGM) enrichment blood culture was performed for horses that seroconverted to B. henselae antigens.


    Transient clinical signs consistent with bartonellosis occurred in some Bartonella-inoculated horses, but hematological alterations did not occur. Three B. henselae-inoculated horses seroconverted, whereas 1 B. bovis-inoculated horse was weakly seropositive. In Group I, B. henselae was amplified and sequenced from BAPGM blood culture as well as a subculture isolate from 1 horse, blood from a 2nd horse, and BAPGM blood culture from a 3rd horse although a subculture isolate was not obtained. All sentinels remained PCR, culture, and serology negative.


    Detection of Bartonella sp. in blood after experimental inoculation supports bacteremia and seroconversion. Culture with BAPGM may be required to detect Bartonella sp. Although mild clinical signs followed acute infection, no long-term effects were noted for 2 years postinoculation.

  • molecular and serological diagnosis of Bartonella infection in 61 dogs from the united states
    Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 2011
    Co-Authors: Cristina Perez, Ricardo G Maggi, Pedro Paulo Vissotto De Paiva Diniz, Edward B Breitschwerdt


    Molecular diagnosis of canine bartonellosis can be extremely challenging and often requires the use of an enrichment culture approach followed by PCR amplification of bacterial DNA.
    (1) The use of enrichment culture with PCR will increase molecular detection of bacteremia and will expand the diversity of Bartonella species detected. (2) Serological testing for Bartonella henselae and Bartonella vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii does not correlate with documentation of bacteremia.
    Between 2003 and 2009, 924 samples from 663 dogs were submitted to the North Carolina State University, College of Veterinary Medicine, Vector Borne Diseases Diagnostic Laboratory for diagnostic testing with the Bartonella α-Proteobacteria growth medium (BAPGM) platform. Test results and medical records of those dogs were retrospectively reviewed.
    PCR amplification of Bartonella sp. DNA after extraction from patient samples was compared with PCR after BAPGM enrichment culture. Indirect immunofluorescent antibody assays, used to detect B. henselae and B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii antibodies, were compared with PCR.
    Sixty-one of 663 dogs were culture positive or had Bartonella DNA detected by PCR, including B. henselae (30/61), B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii (17/61), Bartonella koehlerae (7/61), Bartonella volans-like (2/61), and Bartonella bovis (2/61). Coinfection with more than 1 Bartonella sp. was documented in 9/61 dogs. BAPGM culture was required for PCR detection in 32/61 cases. Only 7/19 and 4/10 infected dogs tested by IFA were B. henselae and B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii seroreactive, respectively.
    Dogs were most often infected with B. henselae or B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii based on PCR and enrichment culture, coinfection was documented, and various Bartonella species were identified. Most infected dogs did not have detectable Bartonella antibodies.

Didier Raoult – 2nd expert on this subject based on the ideXlab platform

  • Detection of Bartonella spp. in fleas by MALDI-TOF MS.
    PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 2018
    Co-Authors: Basma El Hamzaoui, Didier Raoult, Maureen Laroche, Lionel Almeras, Jean Michel Bérenger, Philippe Parola


    Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) has recently emerged in the field of entomology as a promising method for the identification of arthropods and the detection of associated pathogens.

    Methodology/Principal findings
    An experimental model of Ctenocephalides felis (cat fleas) infected with Bartonella quintana and Bartonella henselae was developed to evaluate the efficacy of MALDI-TOF MS in distinguishing infected from uninfected fleas, and its ability to distinguish fleas infected with Bartonella quintana from fleas infected with Bartonella henselae. For B. quintana, two groups of fleas received three successive blood meals, infected or not. A total of 140 fleas (100 exposed fleas and 40 control fleas) were engorged on human blood, infected or uninfected with B. quintana. Regarding the second pathogen, two groups of fleas (200 exposed fleas and 40 control fleas) were fed in the same manner with human blood, infected or not with Bartonella henselae. Fleas were dissected longitudinally; one-half was used for assessment of B. quintana and B. henselae infectious status by real-time PCR, and the second half was subjected to MALDI-TOF MS analysis. Comparison of MS spectra from infected fleas and uninfected fleas revealed distinct MS profiles. Blind queries against our MALDI-TOF MS arthropod database, upgraded with reference spectra from B. quintana and B. henselae infected fleas but also non-infected fleas, provided the correct classification for 100% of the different categories of specimens tested on the first model of flea infection with Bartonella quintana. As for Bartonella henselae, 81% of exposed qPCR-positive fleas, 96% of exposed qPCR-negative fleas and 100% of control fleas were correctly identified on the second model of flea infection.

    MALDI-TOF MS successfully differentiated Bartonella spp.-infected and uninfected fleas and was also able to correctly differentiate fleas infected with Bartonella quintana and fleas infected with Bartonella henselae. MALDI-TOF MS correctly identified flea species as well as their infectious status, consistent with the results of real-time PCR.

    MALDI-TOF is a promising tool for identification of the infection status of fleas infected with Bartonella spp., which allows new possibilities for fast and accurate diagnosis in medical entomology and vector surveillance.

  • Bartonella bovis and Candidatus Bartonella davousti in cattle from Senegal.
    Comparative Immunology Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, 2016
    Co-Authors: Mustapha Dahmani, Didier Raoult, Masse Sambou, Pierre Scandola, Florence Fenollar, Oleg Mediannikov


    In Senegal, domestic ruminants play a vital role in the economy and agriculture and as a food source for people. Bartonellosis in animals is a neglected disease in the tropical regions, and little information is available about the occurrence of this disease in African ruminants. Human bartonellosis due to Bartonella quintana has been previously reported in Senegal. In this study, 199 domestic ruminants, including 104 cattle, 43 sheep, and 52 goats were sampled in villages from the Senegalese regions of Sine Saloum and Casamance. We isolated 29 Bartonella strains, all exclusively from cattle. Molecular and genetic characterization of isolated strains identified 27 strains as Bartonella bovis and two strains as potentially new species. The strains described here represent the first Bartonella strains isolated from domestic ruminants in Senegal and the first putative new Bartonella sp. isolated from cattle in Africa.

  • Identification of Novel Zoonotic Activity of Bartonella spp., France
    Emerging Infectious Diseases, 2016
    Co-Authors: Muriel Vayssier-taussat, Pierreedouard Fournier, Sara Moutailler, Frangoise Femenia, Philippe Raymond, Olivier Croce, Bernard La Scola, Didier Raoult


    Certain Bartonella species are known to cause afebrile bacteremia in humans and other mammals, including B. quintana, the agent of trench fever, and B. henselae, the agent of cat scratch disease. Reports have indicated that animal-associated Bartonella species may cause paucisymptomatic bacteremia and endocarditis in humans. We identified potentially zoonotic strains from 6 Bartonella species in samples from patients who had chronic, subjective symptoms and who reported tick bites. Three strains were B. henselae and 3 were from other animal-associated Bartonella spp. (B. doshiae, B. schoenbuchensis, and B. tribocorum). Genomic analysis of the isolated strains revealed differences from previously sequenced Bartonella strains. Our investigation identifed 3 novel Bartonella spp. strains with human pathogenic potential and showed that Bartonella spp. may be the cause of undifferentiated chronic illness in humans who have been bitten by ticks.

Christoph Dehio – 3rd expert on this subject based on the ideXlab platform

  • a translocated effector required for Bartonella dissemination from derma to blood safeguards migratory host cells from damage by co translocated effectors
    PLOS Pathogens, 2014
    Co-Authors: Rusudan Okujava, Muriel Vayssiertaussat, Patrick Guye, Yunyueh Lu, Claudia Mistl, Florine Polus, Cornelia Halin, Antonius G Rolink, Christoph Dehio


    Numerous bacterial pathogens secrete multiple effectors to modulate host cellular functions. These effectors may interfere with each other to efficiently control the infection process. Bartonellae are Gram-negative, facultative intracellular bacteria using a VirB type IV secretion system to translocate a cocktail of Bartonella effector proteins (Beps) into host cells. Based on in vitro infection models we demonstrate here that BepE protects infected migratory cells from injurious effects triggered by BepC and is required for in vivo dissemination of bacteria from the dermal site of inoculation to blood. Human endothelial cells (HUVECs) infected with a ΔbepE mutant of B. henselae (Bhe) displayed a cell fragmentation phenotype resulting from Bep-dependent disturbance of rear edge detachment during migration. A ΔbepCE mutant did not show cell fragmentation, indicating that BepC is critical for triggering this deleterious phenotype. Complementation of ΔbepE with BepEBhe or its homologues from other Bartonella species abolished cell fragmentation. This cyto-protective activity is confined to the C-terminal Bartonella intracellular delivery (BID) domain of BepEBhe (BID2.EBhe). Ectopic expression of BID2.EBhe impeded the disruption of actin stress fibers by Rho Inhibitor 1, indicating that BepE restores normal cell migration via the RhoA signaling pathway, a major regulator of rear edge retraction. An intradermal (i.d.) model for B. tribocorum (Btr) infection in the rat reservoir host mimicking the natural route of infection by blood sucking arthropods allowed demonstrating a vital role for BepE in bacterial dissemination from derma to blood. While the Btr mutant ΔbepDE was abacteremic following i.d. inoculation, complementation with BepEBtr, BepEBhe or BIDs.EBhe restored bacteremia. Given that we observed a similar protective effect of BepEBhe on infected bone marrow-derived dendritic cells migrating through a monolayer of lymphatic endothelial cells we propose that infected dermal dendritic cells may be involved in disseminating Bartonella towards the blood stream in a BepE-dependent manner.

  • persistence of Bartonella spp stealth pathogens from subclinical infections to vasoproliferative tumor formation
    Fems Microbiology Reviews, 2012
    Co-Authors: Arto T Pulliainen, Christoph Dehio


    Bartonella spp. are facultative intracellular bacteria that typically cause a long-lasting intraerythrocytic bacteremia in their mammalian reservoir hosts, thereby favoring transmission by blood-sucking arthropods. In most cases, natural reservoir host infections are subclinical and the relapsing intraerythrocytic bacteremia may last weeks, months or even years. In this review, we will follow the infection cycle of Bartonella spp. in a reservoir host, which typically starts with an intradermal inoculation of bacteria that are superficially scratched into the skin from arthropod feces and terminates with the pathogen exit by the blood-sucking arthropod. The current knowledge of bacterial countermeasures against mammalian immune response will be presented for each critical step of the pathogenesis. The prevailing models of the still-enigmatic primary niche, the anatomical location where bacteria reside, persist and are periodically seeded into the bloodstream to cause the typical relapsing Bartonella spp. bacteremia will also be critically discussed. The review will end up with a discussion of the ability of Bartonella spp., namely Bartonella henselae, Bartonella quintana and Bartonella bacilliformis, to induce tumor-like vascular deformations in humans having compromised immune response such as in AIDS patients.

  • intruders below the radar molecular pathogenesis of Bartonella spp
    Clinical Microbiology Reviews, 2012
    Co-Authors: Alexander Harms, Christoph Dehio


    Summary: Bartonella spp. are facultative intracellular pathogens that employ a unique stealth infection strategy comprising immune evasion and modulation, intimate interaction with nucleated cells, and intraerythrocytic persistence. Infections with Bartonella are ubiquitous among mammals, and many species can infect humans either as their natural host or incidentally as zoonotic pathogens. Upon inoculation into a naive host, the Bartonellae first colonize a primary niche that is widely accepted to involve the manipulation of nucleated host cells, e.g., in the microvasculature. Consistently, in vitro research showed that Bartonella harbors an ample arsenal of virulence factors to modulate the response of such cells, gain entrance, and establish an intracellular niche. Subsequently, the bacteria are seeded into the bloodstream where they invade erythrocytes and give rise to a typically asymptomatic intraerythrocytic bacteremia. While this course of infection is characteristic for natural hosts, zoonotic infections or the infection of immunocompromised patients may alter the path of Bartonella and result in considerable morbidity. In this review we compile current knowledge on the molecular processes underlying both the infection strategy and pathogenesis of Bartonella and discuss their connection to the clinical presentation of human patients, which ranges from minor complaints to life-threatening disease.