Author(s): van Dam AP, van Weert A, Harmanus C, Hovius KE, Claas EC,
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Abstract Capnocytophaga canimorsus can be a virulent pathogen, whereas C. cynodegmi is of low virulence. Heterogeneity within these species, their frequency in dogs, and pathogenicity factors are largely unknown. Strains from blood cultures from patients presumptively identified as C. canimorsus (n = 25) and as C. cynodegmi by rrs analysis (n = 4), blood cultures from dogs (n = 8), blood cultures from cats (n = 2), and cultures from swabs from dog mouths (n = 53) were analyzed. PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP), a species-specific PCR on rpoB, and rrs sequencing were used. All 29 strains from human blood cultures could be grouped into three PCR-RFLP types. One included the C. canimorsus type strain, and the other types were closely related. Two canine strains were C. canimorsus and grouped into the least common RLFP pattern group. Five were C. cynodegmi and clustered with the reference strain. One canine and both feline strains were distinct. Four human strains that presumptively had been identified as C. cynodegmi by RNA gene sequence analysis clustered with the C. canimorsus strains by both PCR-RFLP and the sequence-specific PCR of the rpoB gene. C. canimorsus DNA was present in 73\% (range, 61 to 85\%) of dogs' mouths, and C. cynodegmi DNA was present in 96\% (range, 94 to 100\%) of dogs' mouths. As defined by rpoB PCR-RFLP and by PCRs using specific primers, all strains from human blood were C. canimorsus. The sequencing of rrs genes suggested the presence of different gene copies in a few strains, indicating that the method is less appropriate for species identification. Both species are present in the majority of dogs. Additional Capnocytophaga species occur in dogs' and cats' mouths.
This article was published in J Clin Microbiol
and referenced in Clinical Microbiology: Open Access