del Real, G; Segers, R P; van der Zeijst, B A; Gaastra, W
A DNA fragment encoding both hemolysin and sphingomyelinase C activity was cloned from the pathogenic bacterium Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo. Initial clones were obtained by screening a genomic library in EMBL3 for hemolytic activity. Both hemolytic and sphingomyelinase C activities were coded for by a 3.9-kilobase BamHI fragment. The hemolysin was expressed from its own promoter in Escherichia coli K-12. Similar DNA sequences were also present in the serovars tarassovi and ballum. Images PMID:2744864
Godínez, C R; Zelaya de Romillo, B; Aurioles-Gamboa, D; Verdugo-Rodríguez, A; Rodríguez-Reyes, E A; De la Peña-Moctezuma, A
One hundred and twenty-five serum samples from California sea lion (Zalophus californianus californianus) pups, and one from an adult female from eight reproductive rookeries located in seven islands in the Gulf of California (Mexico), were collected during the 1994-96 reproductive seasons. These were tested for antibodies to 19 serovars of Leptospira interrogans using a Microscopic Agglutination Test (MAT). Forty-one samples (32%) had antibody levels from 1:20 to 1:320 to one or more serovars. The most frequently detected serotypes were Leptospira interrogans hardjo (n = 13), cynopteri (8), ballum (6), and szwajizak (5). Serovars with the highest prevalence were Leptospira interrogans hardjo and serjoe (1:320), ballum (1:160), and cynopteri, girppotyphosa, and tarassovi (1:80). Based on these results, exposure of sea lions to L. interrogans serovar hardjo seems to be relatively common among colonies located in the islands of the Gulf of California in contrast with those located on the Pacific coast, where the most frequently detected serovar is L. interrogans serovar pomona.
Sakata, E E; Yasuda, P H; Romero, E C; Silva, M V; Lomar, A V
Eighteen strains of L. interrogans isolated from human cases were serotyped by the agglutinin-absorption test at Instituto Adolfo Lutz in São Paulo, Brazil. Fourteen were identified as serovar copenhageni (icterohaemorrhagiae serogroup), 2 as canicola (canicola serogroup), 1 as castellonis (Ballum serogroup) and 1 as pomona serogroup (serovar not yet defined). The frequency of serovar copenhageni in 100% of the isolates in icterohaemorrhagiae serogroup is emphasized and more studies to verify the real serovars prevalence as subsidy to the epidemiology of this infection are suggested by the authors.
Comparative global proteome analyses were performed on Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni grown under conventional in vitro conditions and those mimicking in vivo conditions (iron limitation and serum presence). Proteomic analyses were conducted using iTRAQ and LC-ESI-tandem mass spectrometr...
Plata-Luis, Josué; Foronda, Pilar; Martín-Alonso, Aaron; Feliu, Carlos; Alves, Joana; Gil, Horacio; Valladares, Basilio
Leptospirosis is an important worldwide zoonotic disease that can infect both animals and humans. In most cases, leptospirosis is a nonspecific self-limiting illness, but some patients can develop a severe form with a high mortality. This study was carried out in Santiago Island, Cape Verde, in 2012-2013. A total of 62 wild rodents (Rattus rattus and Mus domesticus) were analyzed. The lipL32 gene, present only in pathogenic Leptospira spp., was amplified by PCR, and 16 samples were positive (25.8%). In both rodent species, Leptospira interrogans was identified. The results show the presence of pathogenic Leptospira in the three localities analyzed in Santiago. The presence of L. interrogans demonstrates a serious health risk for the population, since this species has been associated with the most severe form of leptospirosis, the Weil's disease in humans, a severe infection with jaundice, renal failure, and hemorrhage.
Bernheimer, A W; Bey, R F
The hemolytic and sphingomyelinase C activities of supernatants of cultures of Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona tended to copurify when isoelectric fractionation was carried out. Both activities focused primarily at pH 8.1. Considered in conjunction with other circumstantial evidence, the results led to the conclusion that sphingomyelinase C is responsible for hemolysis. PMID:3019890
Espinosa-Martínez, Deborah V; Sánchez-Montes, Daniel Sokani; León-Paniagua, Livia; Ríos-Muñoz, César A; Berzunza-Cruz, Miriam; Becker, Ingeborg
Leptospira interrogans has been identified to cause leptospirosis, a widespread zoonotic disease that has been identified in domestic and wild animals. This work analyzed kidneys from two species of wild rodents from the state of Campeche, Mexico. Analyses were made by PCR using specific primers for detection of Leptospira interrogans DNA. The rodent species that tested positive were Heteromys gaumeri and Ototylomys phyllotis, both of which are new hosts for the bacteria in Southeastern Mexico. These records provide new insights into the disease's transmission that should be studied carefully in order to identify other potential host species, including humans, which are at risk of becoming infected if they are in contact with infected wildlife.
ESPINOSA-MARTÍNEZ, Deborah V.; SÁNCHEZ-MONTES, Daniel Sokani; LEÓN-PANIAGUA, Livia; RÍOS-MUÑOZ, César A.; BERZUNZA-CRUZ, Miriam; BECKER, Ingeborg
Leptospira interrogans has been identified to cause leptospirosis, a widespread zoonotic disease that has been identified in domestic and wild animals. This work analyzed kidneys from two species of wild rodents from the state of Campeche, Mexico. Analyses were made by PCR using specific primers for detection of Leptospira interrogans DNA. The rodent species that tested positive were Heteromys gaumeri and Ototylomys phyllotis, both of which are new hosts for the bacteria in Southeastern Mexico. These records provide new insights into the disease’s transmission that should be studied carefully in order to identify other potential host species, including humans, which are at risk of becoming infected if they are in contact with infected wildlife. PMID:25923901
Eshghi, Azad; Pappalardo, Elisa; Hester, Svenja; Thomas, Benjamin; Pretre, Gabriela
Leptospirosis is a life-threatening and emerging zoonotic disease with a worldwide annual occurrence of more than 1 million cases. Leptospirosis is caused by spirochetes belonging to the genus Leptospira. The mechanisms of disease manifestation in the host remain elusive, and the roles of leptospiral exoproteins in these processes have yet to be determined. Our aim in this study was to assess the composition and quantity of exoproteins of pathogenic Leptospira interrogans and to construe how these proteins contribute to disease pathogenesis. Label-free quantitative mass spectrometry of proteins obtained from Leptospira spirochetes cultured in vitro under conditions mimicking infection identified 325 exoproteins. The majority of these proteins are conserved in the nonpathogenic species Leptospira biflexa, and proteins involved in metabolism and energy-generating functions were overrepresented and displayed the highest relative abundance in culture supernatants. Conversely, proteins of unknown function, which represent the majority of pathogen-specific proteins (presumably involved in virulence mechanisms), were underrepresented. Characterization of various L. interrogans exoprotein mutants in the animal infection model revealed host mortality rates similar to those of hosts infected with wild-type L. interrogans. Collectively, these results indicate that pathogenic Leptospira exoproteins primarily function in heterotrophic processes (the processes by which organisms utilize organic substances as nutrient sources) to maintain the saprophytic lifestyle rather than the virulence of the bacteria. The underrepresentation of proteins homologous to known virulence factors, such as toxins and effectors in the exoproteome, also suggests that disease manifesting from Leptospira infection is likely caused by a combination of the primary and potentially moonlight functioning of exoproteins. PMID:25987703
The genus Leptospira contains pathogens serologically classified into over 250 serovars, intermediate pathogens and saprophytes with genetic classification into 21 different species. Worldwide, leptospirosis is one of the most widespread zoonoses. L. interrogans serovar Bratislava has been isolated ...
Murray, Gerald L; King, Amy M; Srikram, Amporn; Sermswan, Rasana W; Adler, Ben
Rapid and reliable in vitro methods for the detection of pathogenic leptospires, such as Leptospira interrogans, are lacking. The present study investigated the use of luminescence to replace the existing enumeration techniques. Transposon TnSC189 was modified to incorporate the luxCDABE cassette from Photorhabdus luminescens and was used to construct luminescent Leptospira spp. There was a linear relationship between luminescence and cell number, with the theoretical detection limit being less than 10(4) leptospires. A comparison of enumeration by a standard method (counting by dark-field microscopy) and enumeration by luminescence was conducted with luminescent L. interrogans. There was a good correlation between the two methods of enumeration (R(2) = 0.766), although variation in the luminescence early and late in growth phase reduced the degree of correlation. To demonstrate the utility of luminescence as a viability and cell number reporter, in vitro assays, including MIC determination, an extracellular matrix binding experiment, and a complement killing experiment, were conducted. In each case, the results obtained by luminescence matched those obtained by traditional means with high correlations (binding assay R(2) = 0.916, complement killing assay R(2) = 0.988). A strain expressing the luxCDABE transposon retained virulence in the hamster model of infection. Despite some variation in luminescence as a result of the growth phase or the particular assay conditions, enumeration by luminescence was found to be a quick, reliable, and highly sensitive method for the in vitro detection of leptospires that has the potential to replace more time-consuming methods of enumeration.
Figueredo, Jupciana M; Siqueira, Gabriela H; de Souza, Gisele O; Heinemann, Marcos B; Vasconcellos, Silvio A; Chapola, Erica G B; Nascimento, Ana L T O
We here report the characterization of two novel proteins encoded by the genes LIC11122 and LIC12287, identified in the genome sequences of Leptospira interrogans, annotated, respectively, as a putative sigma factor and a hypothetical protein. The CDSs LIC11122 and LIC12287 have signal peptide SPII and SPI and are predicted to be located mainly at the cytoplasmic membrane of the bacteria. The genes were cloned and the proteins expressed using Escherichia coli. Proteinase K digestion showed that both proteins are surface exposed. Evaluation of interaction of recombinant proteins with extracellular matrix components revealed that they are laminin binding and they were called Lsa19 (LIC11122) and Lsa14 (LIC12287), for Leptospiral-surface adhesin of 19 and 14 kDa, respectively. The bindings were dose-dependent on protein concentration, reaching saturation, fulfilling the ligand-binding criteria. Reactivity of the recombinant proteins with leptospirosis human sera has shown that Lsa19 and, to a lesser extent, Lsa14, are recognized by antibodies, suggesting that, most probably, Lsa19 is expressed during infection. The proteins interact with plasminogen and generate plasmin in the presence of urokinase-type plasminogen activator. Plasmin generation in Leptospira has been associated with tissue penetration and immune evasion strategies. The presence of a sigma factor on the cell surface playing a secondary role, probably mediating host -pathogen interaction, suggests that LIC11122 is a moonlighting protein candidate. Although the biological significance of these putative adhesins will require the generation of mutants, our data suggest that Lsa19 is a potential candidate for future evaluation of its role in adhesion/colonization activities during L. interrogans infection.
Varni, Vanina; Koval, Ariel; Nagel, Ariel; Ruybal, Paula
Leptospirosis is a widespread zoonosis and a re-emergent disease of global distribution with major relevance in veterinary production. Here, we report the whole-genome sequence of Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona strain AKRFB, isolated from a bovine abortion during a leptospirosis outbreak in Argentina. PMID:27198013
Leptospira interrogans is the causative agent of leptospirosis, a zoonosis of global significance. Iron is essential for growth of most bacterial species. Since availability of iron is low in the host, pathogens have evolved complex iron acquisition mechanisms to survive and establish infection. In ...
Llanes, Alejandro; Restrepo, Carlos Mario; Rajeev, Sreekumari
The genome of a laboratory-adapted strain of Leptospira interrogans serovar Hardjo was sequenced and analyzed. Comparison of the sequenced genome with that recently published for a field isolate of the same serovar revealed relatively high sequence conservation at the nucleotide level, despite the different biological background of both samples. Conversely, comparison of both serovar Hardjo genomes with those of L. borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo showed extensive differences between the corresponding chromosomes, except for the region occupied by their rfb loci. Additionally, comparison of the serovar Hardjo genomes with those of different L. interrogans serovars allowed us to detect several genomic features that may confer an adaptive advantage to L. interrogans serovar Hardjo, including a possible integrated plasmid and an additional copy of a cluster encoding a membrane transport system known to be involved in drug resistance. A phylogenomic strategy was used to better understand the evolutionary position of the Hardjo serovar among L. interrogans serovars and other Leptospira species. The proposed phylogeny supports the hypothesis that the presence of similar rfb loci in two different species may be the result of a lateral gene transfer event. PMID:27442015
Varni, Vanina; Koval, Ariel; Nagel, Ariel; Ruybal, Paula; Caimi, Karina; Amadio, Ariel F
Leptospirosis is a widespread zoonosis and a re-emergent disease of global distribution with major relevance in veterinary production. Here, we report the whole-genome sequence of Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona strain AKRFB, isolated from a bovine abortion during a leptospirosis outbreak in Argentina.
Day, T D; O'Connor, C E; Waas, J R; Pearson, A J; Matthews, L R
Leptospira interrogans serovar balcanica is a potential vector being investigated for spreading a biological control agent among introduced brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) in New Zealand. As previous studies have shown that possums are unlikely to contract leptospirosis through a contaminated environment alone, the objective was to determine whether L. interrogans serovar balcanica could be transmitted between sexually mature, socially housed possums. Possums were infected experimentally with L. interrogans serovar balcanica and housed in pairs or groups with uninfected possums for either 70 or 140 days, during the breeding or non-breeding seasons. No transmission occurred between any infected and uninfected possums during the non-breeding season. However, transmission occurred between females that had been socially housed in pairs or groups in the breeding season. Mixed sex transmission also occurred in pairs and groups, both from males to females and from females to males. Mixed sex transmission usually occurred rapidly (< 44 days) and was not associated with the production of offspring. No transmission occurred between males during the breeding or the non-breeding seasons. Transmission probably occurs as a result of affiliative or sexual behaviour, but is unlikely to occur through fighting. The social transmission pathways determined in this study suggest that L. interrogans serovar balcanica may have the transmission attributes desired in a vector for biological control.
Cerri, D; Nuvoloni, R; Ebani, V; Pedrini, A; Mani, P; Andreani, E; Farina, R
A bacteriological study was carried out to identify possible renal and/or genital carriers of Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo. L. hardjo was found at slaughter in the kidneys of three seropositive ewes, but not in uterus or salpinges of these animals.
Jorge, Sérgio; Monte, Leonardo G; De Oliveira, Natasha R; Collares, Thais F; Roloff, Bárbara C; Gomes, Charles K; Hartwig, Daiane D; Dellagostin, Odir A; Hartleben, Cláudia P
Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease caused by pathogenic spirochetes from the genus Leptospira, which includes 20 species and more than 300 serovars. Canines are important hosts of pathogenic leptospires and can transmit the pathogen to humans via infected urine. Here, we report the phenotypic and molecular characterization of Leptospira interrogans isolated from Canis familiaris in Southern Brazil. The isolated strain was characterized by variable-number tandem-repeats analysis as L. interrogans, serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae. In addition, the isolate was recognized by antibodies from human and canine serum samples previously tested by microscopic agglutination test. Ultimately, the expression of membrane-associated antigens (LipL32 and leptospiral immunoglobulin-like proteins) from pathogenic leptospires using monoclonal antibodies was detected by indirect immunofluorescence assay. In conclusion, identification of new strains of Leptospira can help in the diagnosis and control of leptospirosis.
Matsunaga, James; Lo, Miranda; Bulach, Dieter M; Zuerner, Richard L; Adler, Ben; Haake, David A
Transmission of pathogenic Leptospira between mammalian hosts usually involves dissemination via soil or water contaminated by the urine of carrier animals. The ability of Leptospira to adapt to the diverse conditions found inside and outside the host is reflected in its relatively large genome size and high percentage of signal transduction genes. An exception is Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo, which is transmitted by direct contact and appears to have lost genes necessary for survival outside the mammalian host. Invasion of host tissues by Leptospira interrogans involves a transition from a low osmolar environment outside the host to a higher physiologic osmolar environment within the host. Expression of the lipoprotein LigA and LigB adhesins is strongly induced by an upshift in osmolarity to the level found in mammalian host tissues. These data suggest that Leptospira utilizes changes in osmolarity to regulate virulence characteristics. To better understand how L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni adapts to osmolar conditions that correspond with invasion of a mammalian host, we quantified alterations in transcript levels using whole-genome microarrays. Overnight exposure in leptospiral culture medium supplemented with sodium chloride to physiologic osmolarity significantly altered the transcript levels of 6% of L. interrogans genes. Repressed genes were significantly more likely to be absent or pseudogenes in L. borgpetersenii, suggesting that osmolarity is relevant in studying the adaptation of L. interrogans to host conditions. Genes induced by physiologic osmolarity encoded a higher than expected number of proteins involved in signal transduction. Further, genes predicted to encode lipoproteins and those coregulated by temperature were overrepresented among both salt-induced and salt-repressed genes. In contrast, leptospiral homologues of hyperosmotic or general stress genes were not induced at physiologic osmolarity. These findings suggest that
Fonseca, Luciane S; da Silva, Josefa B; Milanez, Juliana S; Monteiro-Vitorello, Claudia B; Momo, Leonardo; de Morais, Zenaide M; Vasconcellos, Silvio A; Marques, Marilis V; Ho, Paulo L; da Costa, Renata M A
Bacteria activate a regulatory network in response to the challenges imposed by DNA damage to genetic material, known as the SOS response. This system is regulated by the RecA recombinase and by the transcriptional repressor lexA. Leptospira interrogans is a pathogen capable of surviving in the environment for weeks, being exposed to a great variety of stress agents and yet retaining its ability to infect the host. This study aims to investigate the behavior of L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni after the stress induced by DNA damage. We show that L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni genome contains two genes encoding putative LexA proteins (lexA1 and lexA2) one of them being potentially acquired by lateral gene transfer. Both genes are induced after DNA damage, but the steady state levels of both LexA proteins drop, probably due to auto-proteolytic activity triggered in this condition. In addition, seven other genes were up-regulated following UV-C irradiation, recA, recN, dinP, and four genes encoding hypothetical proteins. This set of genes is potentially regulated by LexA1, as it showed binding to their promoter regions. All these regions contain degenerated sequences in relation to the previously described SOS box, TTTGN 5CAAA. On the other hand, LexA2 was able to bind to the palindrome TTGTAN10TACAA, found in its own promoter region, but not in the others. Therefore, the L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni SOS regulon may be even more complex, as a result of LexA1 and LexA2 binding to divergent motifs. New possibilities for DNA damage response in Leptospira are expected, with potential influence in other biological responses such as virulence.
Eshghi, Azad; Lourdault, Kristel; Murray, Gerald L; Bartpho, Thanatchaporn; Sermswan, Rasana W; Picardeau, Mathieu; Adler, Ben; Snarr, Brendan; Zuerner, Richard L; Cameron, Caroline E
Pathogenic Leptospira spp. are likely to encounter higher concentrations of reactive oxygen species induced by the host innate immune response. In this study, we characterized Leptospira interrogans catalase (KatE), the only annotated catalase found within pathogenic Leptospira species, by assessing its role in resistance to H(2)O(2)-induced oxidative stress and during infection in hamsters. Pathogenic L. interrogans bacteria had a 50-fold-higher survival rate under H(2)O(2)-induced oxidative stress than did saprophytic L. biflexa bacteria, and this was predominantly catalase dependent. We also characterized KatE, the only annotated catalase found within pathogenic Leptospira species. Catalase assays performed with recombinant KatE confirmed specific catalase activity, while protein fractionation experiments localized KatE to the bacterial periplasmic space. The insertional inactivation of katE in pathogenic Leptospira bacteria drastically diminished leptospiral viability in the presence of extracellular H(2)O(2) and reduced virulence in an acute-infection model. Combined, these results suggest that L. interrogans KatE confers in vivo resistance to reactive oxygen species induced by the host innate immune response.
Arteaga-Troncoso, G; Jiménez-Estrada, J M; Montes De Oca-Jimenez, R; López-Hurtado, M; Luna-Alvarez, M; Hernandez-Andrade, L; Moreno-Alfaro, A; Galan-Herrera, J F; Guerra-Infante, F M
A number of recent reports emphasize the risk of zoonotic diseases and the high degree of prevalence of asymptomatic animals infected with Leptospira interrogans. This report sought to assess the prevalence of antibodies to certain serovars of L. interrogans, and to describe the association between seropositivity and risk factors associated with within-flock transmission in a mountainous region of Mexico. Overall seroprevalence to L. interrogans was 54·5% (95% confidence interval 48·3-60·7); the most frequent serovar was Icterohaemorrhagiae. The accumulation of placentas and fetuses at a site close to lambing paddocks can play a significant role as a risk factor for within-flock transmission of L. interrogans in transhumant farming systems in the municipality of Xalatlaco. The high prevalence of L. interrogans antibodies supports the hypothesis that natural foci of this zoonosis are present in sheep flocks in this area. These findings emphasize the need for planning and implementation of control programmes for ovine leptospirosis in Mexico and elsewhere.
Vahdat, F; Bey, R F; Williamson, N B; Whitmore, H L; Zemjanis, R; Robinson, R A
The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of Leptospira interrogans serovar hardio on fertility in cattle. Twenty seronegative mature dairy cows were assigned to two groups. Group I (challenged cows) was bred by a seronegative bull followed by intrauterine infusion (within 30 minutes) of Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo. Group II was bred by the same bull followed by intrauterine infusion of 5 ml of sterile culture medium. Blood samples were collected at two-day intervals to monitor serum antibody titers. Daily blood cultures for 10 days and weekly urine cultures for five weeks were performed to monitor the animals for leptospiremia and leptospiuria. Cows were slaughtered 35 days post-breeding, and their reproductive tracts were examined. All animals remained clinically normal following intrauterine challenge. There was no difference in pregnancy rates (Group I, 7/10; Group II, 6/10). All embryos, reproductive tracts, and kidneys appeared normal. A microscopic agglutination test (MA) showed that 4 of 10 challenged cows developed serum antibody titers between 8 and 20 days after challenge. However, on the basis of the hamster passive protection test, all challenged cows had serum antibodies present. All blood and urine cultures were negative through the experimental period, as were the final kidney and uterine cultures. In a second experiment, six seronegative cows were infused with killed microorganisms immediately after insemination. Results of a microscopic agglutination test and a hamster passive protection test indicated that these cows did not develop humoral antibodies against serovar hardjo. These results indicated that intrauterine inoculation of Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo (hamster-adapted strain) following breeding did not affect pregnancy rates despite an intrauterine challenge which caused the development of humoral antibodies.
Burth, P; Younes-Ibrahim, M; Gonçalez, F H; Costa, E R; Faria, M V
We showed previously that the glycolipoprotein fraction prepared from Leptospira interrogans inhibited the Na+,K+ ATPase enzyme purified from brain or kidney and in isolated nephron segments (M. Younes-Ibrahim, P. Burth, M. V. Castro Faria, B. Buffin-Meyer, S. Marsy, C. Barlet-Bas, L. Cheval, and A. Doucet, C. R. Acad. Sci. Paris Ser. III 318:619-625, 1995). In the present communication, we have demonstrated that unsaturated fatty acids such as oleic and palmitoleic acids, which are adsorbed to this fraction, are effective inhibitors of the enzyme. PMID:9119504
Leptospira interrogans can infect a myriad of mammalian hosts, including humans (Bharti, Nally et al. 2003, Ko, Goarant et al. 2009). Following acquisition by a suitable host, leptospires disseminate via the bloodstream to multiple tissues, including the kidneys, where they adhere to and colonize th...
Zuerner, Richard L; Cameron, Caroline E; Raverty, Stephen; Robinson, John; Colegrove, Kathleen M; Norman, Stephanie A; Lambourn, Dyanna; Jeffries, Steven; Alt, David P; Gulland, Frances
Leptospirosis is one of the most widespread bacterial zoonoses in the world and affects most mammalian species. Although leptospirosis is well documented and characterized in terrestrial species, less information is available regarding the distribution and impact of leptospirosis in marine mammals. Additionally, the role of animal migrations on the geographical spread of leptospirosis has not been reported. Periodic epizootic outbreaks of acute leptospirosis among California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) have been reported since 1971. In this study, we collected samples from California sea lions stranded along the Pacific coast of North America during the most recent epidemic in 2004, and maintained leptospirosis surveillance of the California sea lion population along the California coast through 2007. Several isolates of Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona were obtained from kidney and urine samples collected during this study, a finding consistent with serological evidence that California sea lions are persistently exposed to this leptospiral serovar. Combined, these data support a model whereby California sea lions are maintenance hosts for L. interrogans serovar Pomona, yet periodically undergo outbreaks of acute infection. During the 2004 outbreak, the incidence of new leptospirosis cases among California sea lions coincided with the seasonal movement of male sea lions from rookeries along the coast of central and southern California north as far as British Columbia. These data show that seasonal animal movement contributes to the distribution of leptospirosis across a large geographical region.
Eshghi, Azad; Becam, Jérôme; Lambert, Ambroise; Sismeiro, Odile; Dillies, Marie-Agnès; Jagla, Bernd; Wunder, Elsio A; Ko, Albert I; Coppee, Jean-Yves; Goarant, Cyrille; Picardeau, Mathieu
Limited research has been conducted on the role of transcriptional regulators in relation to virulence in Leptospira interrogans, the etiological agent of leptospirosis. Here, we identify an L. interrogans locus that encodes a sensor protein, an anti-sigma factor antagonist, and two genes encoding proteins of unknown function. Transposon insertion into the gene encoding the sensor protein led to dampened transcription of the other 3 genes in this locus. This lb139 insertion mutant (the lb139(-) mutant) displayed attenuated virulence in the hamster model of infection and reduced motility in vitro. Whole-transcriptome analyses using RNA sequencing revealed the downregulation of 115 genes and the upregulation of 28 genes, with an overrepresentation of gene products functioning in motility and signal transduction and numerous gene products with unknown functions, predicted to be localized to the extracellular space. Another significant finding encompassed suppressed expression of the majority of the genes previously demonstrated to be upregulated at physiological osmolarity, including the sphingomyelinase C precursor Sph2 and LigB. We provide insight into a possible requirement for transcriptional regulation as it relates to leptospiral virulence and suggest various biological processes that are affected due to the loss of native expression of this genetic locus.
Miraglia, Fabiana; Matsuo, Minekazo; Morais, Zenaide Maria; Dellagostin, Odir Antonio; Seixas, Fabiana Kömmling; Freitas, Julio César; Hartskeerl, Rudy; Moreno, Luisa Zanolli; Costa, Bárbara Letícia; Souza, Gisele Oliveira; Vasconcellos, Silvio Arruda; Moreno, Andrea Micke
Leptospira interrogans serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae is the major serogroup infecting humans worldwide, and rodents and dogs are the most significant transmission sources in urban environments. Knowledge of the prevalent serovars and their maintenance hosts is essential to understand the epidemiology of leptospirosis. In this study, 20 Leptospira isolates were evaluated by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), variable number tandem-repeat analysis (VNTR), serotyping, and determination of antimicrobial resistance profile. Isolates, originated from bovine, canine, human, and rodent sources, were characterized by microscopic agglutination test with polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies and were identified as L. interrogans serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae serovar Copenhageni. MICs of antimicrobials often used in veterinary medicine were determined by broth microdilution test. Most of tested antibiotics were effective against isolates, including penicillin, ampicillin, and ceftiofur. Higher MIC variability was observed for fluoroquinolones and neomycin; all isolates were resistant to trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole and sulphadimethoxine. Isolates were genotyped by PFGE and VNTR; both techniques were unable to discriminate between serovars Copenhageni and Icterohaemorrhagiae, as expected. PFGE clustered all isolates in 1 pulsotype, indicating that these serovars can be transmitted between species and that bovine, rodent, and dogs can maintain them in the environment endangering the human population.
Narayanavari, Suneel A.; Lourdault, Kristel; Sritharan, Manjula; Haake, David A.; Matsunaga, James
Pathogenic members of the genus Leptospira are the causative agents of leptospirosis, a neglected disease of public and veterinary health concern. Leptospirosis is a systemic disease that in its severest forms leads to renal insufficiency, hepatic dysfunction, and pulmonary failure. Many strains of Leptospira produce hemolytic and sphingomyelinase activities, and a number of candidate leptospiral hemolysins have been identified based on sequence similarity to well-characterized bacterial hemolysins. Five of the putative hemolysins are sphingomyelinase paralogs. Although recombinant forms of the sphingomyelinase Sph2 and other hemolysins lyse erythrocytes, none have been demonstrated to contribute to the hemolytic activity secreted by leptospiral cells. In this study, we examined the regulation of sph2 and its relationship to hemolytic and sphingomyelinase activities produced by several L. interrogans strains cultivated under the osmotic conditions found in the mammalian host. The sph2 gene was poorly expressed when the Fiocruz L1-130 (serovar Copenhageni), 56601 (sv. Lai), and L495 (sv. Manilae) strains were cultivated in the standard culture medium EMJH. Raising EMJH osmolarity to physiological levels with sodium chloride enhanced Sph2 production in all three strains. In addition, the Pomona subtype kennewicki strain LC82-25 produced substantially greater amounts of Sph2 during standard EMJH growth than the other strains, and sph2 expression increased further by addition of salt. When 10% rat serum was present in EMJH along with the sodium chloride supplement, Sph2 production increased further in all strains. Osmotic regulation and differences in basal Sph2 production in the Manilae L495 and Pomona strains correlated with the levels of secreted hemolysin and sphingomyelinase activities. Finally, a transposon insertion in sph2 dramatically reduced hemolytic and sphingomyelinase activities during incubation of L. interrogans at physiologic osmolarity
Jobbins, S E; Sanderson, C E; Alexander, K A
Leptospirosis is the most widespread zoonosis in the world. In northern Botswana, humans live in close proximity to a diversity of wildlife and peridomestic rodents and may be exposed to a variety of zoonotic pathogens. Little is known regarding the occurrence and epidemiology of L. interrogans in Africa despite the recognized global importance of this zoonotic disease and the threat it poses to public health. In Botswana, banded mongooses (Mungos mungo) live in close proximity to humans across protected and unprotected landscapes and may be a useful sentinel species for assessing the occurrence of zoonotic organisms, such as L. interrogans. We utilized PCR to screen banded mongoose kidneys for leptospiral DNA and identified 41.5% prevalence of renal carriage of L. interrogans (exact binomial 95% CI 27.7-56.7%, n = 41). Renal carriage was also detected in one Selous' mongoose (Paracynictis selousi). This is the first published confirmation of carriage of L. interrogans in either species. This is also the first report of L. interrogans occurrence in northern Botswana and the only report of this organism in a wildlife host in the country. Pathogenic Leptospira are usually transmitted indirectly to humans through soil or water contaminated with infected urine. Other avenues, such as direct contact between humans and wildlife, as well as consumption of mongooses and other wildlife as bushmeat, may pose additional exposure risk and must be considered in public health management of this newly identified zoonotic disease threat. There is a critical need to characterize host species involvement and pathogen transmission dynamics, including human-wildlife interactions that may increase human exposure potential and infection risk. We recommend that public health strategy be modified to include sensitization of medical practitioners to the presence of L. interrogans in the region, the potential for human infection, and implementation of clinical screening. This study
Lambert, Ambroise; Wong Ng, Jérôme; Picardeau, Mathieu
Chemotaxis may have an important role in the infection process of pathogenic Leptospira spp.; however, little is known about the regulation of flagellar-based motility in these atypical bacteria. We generated a library of random transposon mutants of the pathogen L. interrogans, which included a mutant with insertion in the first gene of an operon containing the chemotaxis genes cheA, cheW, cheD, cheB, cheY and mcp. The disrupted gene encodes a putative histidine kinase (HK). The HK mutant was motile and virulent, but swarm plate and capillary assays suggested that chemotaxis was reduced in this mutant. Further analysis of bacterial trajectories by videomicroscopy showed that the ability of this mutant to reverse was significantly impaired in comparison to wild-type strain. Our data therefore show that this operon is required for full chemotaxis of Leptospira spp.
de Souza Júnior, Milton Formiga; Lobato, Zélia Inês Portela; Lobato, Francisco Carlos Faria; Moreira, Elvio Carlos; de Oliveira, Rogério Rodrigues; Leite, Geysa Goulart; Freitas, Theonys Diógenes; de Assis, Ronnie Antunes
Four hundred and twenty-seven serum samples of wild animals were tested against 18 serovars of Leptospira interrogans. Of 286 samples of Cebus apella, 46 (16.1%) were positive for the serovars pomona, brasiliensis, mini, swajizak, grippotyphosa, sarmin, fluminense, autumnalis, hebdomadis, guaratuba, javanica and icterohaemorrhagiae. Of 82 samples of Alouatta caraya, 2 (2.4%) were positive for the serovars mangus and fluminense. Of 31 samples of Nasua nasua, 4 (12.9%) were positive for the serovars fluminense and javanica, and of 10 samples of Cerdocyon thous, 2 (20 %) were positive for the serovars fluminense and brasiliensis. Seven samples of Dasyprocta sp, 6 of Tamandua tetradactyla and 5 of Euphractus sexcintus did not present reactivity.
Holroyd, R G
Five experiments with Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo vaccine were carried out over a 6-year period in pregnant Brahman-cross and Sahiwal-cross cows in the dry tropics on northern Queensland. The numbers ranged from 127 breeders aged 2 to 5 years in 1972 to 344 breeders aged 2 to 9 years in 1977. Half of the cows were vaccinated twice in mid-pregnancy except for 1977, when they were vaccinated once. In 1975-1977 inclusive, half of the heifers were given an additional dose of vaccine at commencement of mating. Vaccination caused a significant (P less than 0.01) reduction of prenatal loss but not of perinatal or postnatal losses. Growth rates of calves from vaccinated and unvaccinated dams were similar.
Durfee, P T; Presidente, P J
Two of four calves inoculated with Leptospira interrogans serovar balcanica developed low microscopic agglutinating (MA) titres to serovar hardjo. A third calf had an MA titre of 1:1024 by day 19 post-inoculation (PI). Transient leptospiruria was recorded in one calf on days 12 and 13 PI. An in-contact calf did not seroconvert. None of the calves had fever or other clinical signs of disease. Four ewes inoculated with balcanica developed MA titres to hardjo by day 13 PI, and a transient leptospiruria between days 14 and 25 PI. None of the ewes showed any evidence of clinical disease and three of them delivered healthy lambs 22 to 64 days PI. One ewe had mild lesions of focal interstitial nephritis.
Buhnerkempe, Michael G; Prager, Katherine C; Strelioff, Christopher C; Greig, Denise J; Laake, Jeff L; Melin, Sharon R; DeLong, Robert L; Gulland, Frances M D; Lloyd-Smith, James O
Identifying mechanisms driving pathogen persistence is a vital component of wildlife disease ecology and control. Asymptomatic, chronically infected individuals are an oft-cited potential reservoir of infection, but demonstrations of the importance of chronic shedding to pathogen persistence at the population-level remain scarce. Studying chronic shedding using commonly collected disease data is hampered by numerous challenges, including short-term surveillance that focuses on single epidemics and acutely ill individuals, the subtle dynamical influence of chronic shedding relative to more obvious epidemic drivers, and poor ability to differentiate between the effects of population prevalence of chronic shedding vs. intensity and duration of chronic shedding in individuals. We use chronic shedding of Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) as a case study to illustrate how these challenges can be addressed. Using leptospirosis-induced strands as a measure of disease incidence, we fit models with and without chronic shedding, and with different seasonal drivers, to determine the time-scale over which chronic shedding is detectable and the interactions between chronic shedding and seasonal drivers needed to explain persistence and outbreak patterns. Chronic shedding can enable persistence of L. interrogans within the sea lion population. However, the importance of chronic shedding was only apparent when surveillance data included at least two outbreaks and the intervening inter-epidemic trough during which fadeout of transmission was most likely. Seasonal transmission, as opposed to seasonal recruitment of susceptibles, was the dominant driver of seasonality in this system, and both seasonal factors had limited impact on long-term pathogen persistence. We show that the temporal extent of surveillance data can have a dramatic impact on inferences about population processes, where the failure to identify both short- and
Coutinho, Mariana L.; Matsunaga, James; Wang, Long-Chieh; de la Peña Moctezuma, Alejandro; Lewis, Michael S.; Babbitt, Jane T.; Aleixo, Jose Antonio G.; Haake, David A.
Background Leptospirosis is a zoonosis caused by highly motile, helically shaped bacteria that penetrate the skin and mucous membranes through lesions or abrasions, and rapidly disseminate throughout the body. Although the intraperitoneal route of infection is widely used to experimentally inoculate hamsters, this challenge route does not represent a natural route of infection. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe the kinetics of disease and infection in hamster model of leptospirosis after subcutaneous and intradermal inoculation of Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni, strain Fiocruz L1-130. Histopathologic changes in and around the kidney, including glomerular and tubular damage and interstitial inflammatory changes, began on day 5, and preceded deterioration in renal function as measured by serum creatinine. Weight loss, hemoconcentration, increased absolute neutrophil counts (ANC) in the blood and hepatic dysfunction were first noted on day 6. Vascular endothelial growth factor, a serum marker of sepsis severity, became elevated during the later stages of infection. The burden of infection, as measured by quantitative PCR, was highest in the kidney and peaked on day 5 after intradermal challenge and on day 6 after subcutaneous challenge. Compared to subcutaneous challenge, intradermal challenge resulted in a lower burden of infection in both the kidney and liver on day 6, lower ANC and less weight loss on day 7. Conclusions/Significance The intradermal and subcutaneous challenge routes result in significant differences in the kinetics of dissemination and disease after challenge with L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni strain Fiocruz L1-130 at an experimental dose of 2×106 leptospires. These results provide new information regarding infection kinetics in the hamster model of leptospirosis. PMID:25411782
Dixit, Bhuvan; Ghosh, Karukriti Kaushik; Fernandes, Gary; Kumar, Pankaj; Gogoi, Prerana; Kumar, Manish
Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni strain Fiocruz L1-130 carries a set of cas genes associated with CRISPR-Cas subtype I-B. Herein, we report for the first time active transcription of a set of cas genes (cas1 to cas8) of L. interrogans where cas4, cas1, cas2 and cas6, cas3, cas8, cas7, cas5 are clustered together in two independent operons. As an initial step toward comprehensive understanding of CRISPR-Cas system in spirochete, the biochemical study of one of the core Leptospira Cas2 proteins (Lep_Cas2) showed nuclease activity on both DNA and RNA in a nonspecific manner. Additionally, unlike other known Cas2 proteins, Lep_Cas2 showed metal-independent RNase activity and preferential activity on RNA over DNA. These results provide insight for understanding Cas2 diversity existing in the prokaryotic adaptive immune system.
Verma, Ashutosh; Artiushin, Sergey; Matsunaga, James; Haake, David A.; Timoney, John F.
Recurrent uveitis as a sequela to Leptospira infection is the most common infectious cause of blindness and impaired vision of horses worldwide. Leptospiral proteins expressed during prolonged survival in the eyes of horses with lesions of chronic uveitis were identified by screening a phage library of Leptospira interrogans DNA fragments with eye fluids from uveitic horses. Inserts of reactive phages encoded several known leptospiral proteins and two novel putative lipoproteins, LruA and LruB. LruA was intrinsically labeled during incubation of L. interrogans in medium containing [14C]palmitic acid, confirming that it is a lipoprotein. lruA and lruB were detected by Southern blotting in infectious Leptospira interrogans but not in nonpathogenic Leptospira biflexa. Fractionation data from cultured Leptospira indicate that LruA and LruB are localized in the inner membrane. Uveitic eye fluids contained significantly higher levels of immunoglobulin A (IgA) and IgG specific for each protein than did companion sera, indicating strong local antibody responses. Moreover, LruA- and LruB-specific antisera reacted with equine ocular components, suggesting an immunopathogenic role in leptospiral uveitis. PMID:16239521
Scialfa, Exequiel; Brihuega, Bibiana; Venzano, Agustín; Morris, Winston Eduardo; Bolpe, Jorge; Schettino, Mateo
To identify carriers of Leptospira spp. in Argentina, wild animals were trapped in Buenos Aires Province during three nights, capturing 12 Didelphis albiventris (white-eared opossum), six Chaetophractus villosus (big hairy armadillo), five Lycalopex griseus (South American gray fox), and two Conepatus chinga (Molina's hog-nosed skunk). All were tested by microscopic agglutination test, and five (two gray foxes, two armadillos, and one skunk) were positive for Leptospira interrogans serovars Canicola and Icterohaemorrhagiae, L. borgpetersenii serovar Castellonis, and L. kirschneri serovar Grippotyphosa, at titers of 1:50 and 1:100. Kidney tissue from all animals was cultured, and one isolate of L. interrogans from a gray fox was obtained. Hamsters inoculated with the isolate died after 6 days with no macroscopic lesions at necropsy. However, histologic examination revealed glomerulonephritis, interstitial nephritis, and pneumonia. The Leptospira strain from the South American gray fox was analyzed serologically and its pathogenicity was established. Genotyping through multiple-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis showed that the strain was a new genotype related to the L. interrogans serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae.
Grassmann, André Alex; McBride, Alan John Alexander; Nally, Jarlath E; Caimano, Melissa J
Leptospira interrogans can infect a myriad of mammalian hosts, including humans (Bharti et al., 2003; Ko et al., 2009). Following acquisition by a suitable host, leptospires disseminate via the bloodstream to multiple tissues, including the kidneys, where they adhere to and colonize the proximal convoluted renal tubules (Athanazio et al., 2008). Infected hosts shed large number of spirochetes in their urine and the leptospires can survive in different environmental conditions before transmission to another host. Differential gene expression by Leptospira spp. permits adaption to these new conditions. Here we describe a protocol for the cultivation of Leptospira interrogans within Dialysis Membrane Chambers (DMCs) implanted into the peritoneal cavities of Sprague-Dawley rats (Caimano et al., 2014). This technique was originally developed to study mammalian adaption by the Lyme disease spirochete, Borrelia burgdorferi (Akins et al., 1998; Caimano, 2005). The small pore size (8,000 MWCO) of the dialysis membrane tubing used for this procedure permits access to host nutrients but excludes host antibodies and immune effector cells. Given the physiological and environmental similarities between DMCs and the proximal convoluted renal tubule, we reasoned that the DMC model would be suitable for studying in vivo gene expression by L. interrogans. In a 20 to 30 min procedure, DMCs containing virulent leptospires are surgically-implanted into the rat peritoneal cavity. Nine to 11 days post-implantation, DMCs are explanted and organisms recovered. Typically, a single DMC yields ~10(9) mammalian host-adapted leptospires (Caimano et al., 2014). In addition to providing a facile system for studying the transcriptional and physiologic changes pathogenic L. interrogans undergo within the mammal, the DMC model also provides a rationale basis for selecting new targets for mutagenesis and the identification of novel virulence determinants. Caution: Leptospira interrogans is a BSL-2
Witchell, Timothy D.; Eshghi, Azad; Nally, Jarlath E.; Hof, Rebecca; Boulanger, Martin J.; Wunder, Elsio A.; Ko, Albert I.; Haake, David A.; Cameron, Caroline E.
Background Leptospirosis, a re-emerging disease of global importance caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp., is considered the world's most widespread zoonotic disease. Rats serve as asymptomatic carriers of pathogenic Leptospira and are critical for disease spread. In such reservoir hosts, leptospires colonize the kidney, are shed in the urine, persist in fresh water and gain access to a new mammalian host through breaches in the skin. Methodology/Principal Findings Previous studies have provided evidence for post-translational modification (PTM) of leptospiral proteins. In the current study, we used proteomic analyses to determine the presence of PTMs on the highly abundant leptospiral protein, LipL32, from rat urine-isolated L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni compared to in vitro-grown organisms. We observed either acetylation or tri-methylation of lysine residues within multiple LipL32 peptides, including peptides corresponding to regions of LipL32 previously identified as epitopes. Intriguingly, the PTMs were unique to the LipL32 peptides originating from in vivo relative to in vitro grown leptospires. The identity of each modified lysine residue was confirmed by fragmentation pattern analysis of the peptide mass spectra. A synthetic peptide containing an identified tri-methylated lysine, which corresponds to a previously identified LipL32 epitope, demonstrated significantly reduced immunoreactivity with serum collected from leptospirosis patients compared to the peptide version lacking the tri-methylation. Further, a subset of the identified PTMs are in close proximity to the established calcium-binding and putative collagen-binding sites that have been identified within LipL32. Conclusions/Significance The exclusive detection of PTMs on lysine residues within LipL32 from in vivo-isolated L. interrogans implies that infection-generated modification of leptospiral proteins may have a biologically relevant function during the course of infection. Although
Miraglia, Fabiana; Moreno, Andréa Mike; Gomes, Cleise Ribeiro; Paixão, Renata; Liuson, Esequiel; Morais, Zenaide Maria; Maiorka, Paulo; Seixas, Fabiana Kömmling; Dellagostin, Odir Antonio; Vasconcellos, Silvio Arruda
With the aim of isolating Leptospira spp., blood serum, kidney, liver and genital tract of 137 female swine (40 sows and 97 gilts) and also urine samples from 22 sows were collected in a slaughterhouse in the State of São Paulo, from April 2003 to August 2004. Four isolates were obtained from animals that presented microagglutination test (MAT) titers ≥ 100 for the serovar Pomona and one was obtained from an animal negative by MAT in which Leptospira was isolated from the liver and reproductive tract. The presence of leptospiral DNA was investigated by PCR, and positive results were found in kidneys of 11 females, liver of two, genital tract of two and urine of one of them. Nephrosis, interstitial multifocal nephritis, moderate to severe changing, hyalines cylinders and hemorrhagic focuses, hepatic and uterine horns congestion were histological lesions observed in higher frequency in animals positive for leptospira. The silver impregnation (Warthin Starry) confirmed the presence of spirochetes in renal tubules of four females with positive leptospira cultures from kidneys. The serogroup of the five isolates was identified as Pomona by cross agglutination with reference polyclonal antibodies. Molecular characterization of the isolates was carried out by variable-number tandem-repeats analysis. All the isolates revealed a pattern distinct from the L. interrogans Pomona type strain, but identical to a previously identified pattern from strains isolated in Argentina belonging to serovar Pomona. PMID:24031254
Prager, K C; Greig, Denise J; Alt, David P; Galloway, Renee L; Hornsby, Richard L; Palmer, Lauren J; Soper, Jennifer; Wu, Qingzhong; Zuerner, Richard L; Gulland, Frances M D; Lloyd-Smith, James O
Since 1970, periodic outbreaks of leptospirosis, caused by pathogenic spirochetes in the genus Leptospira, have caused morbidity and mortality of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) along the Pacific coast of North America. Yearly seasonal epizootics of varying magnitude occur between the months of July and December, with major epizootics occurring every 3-5 years. Genetic and serological data suggest that Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona is the infecting serovar and is enzootic in the California sea lion population, although the mechanism of persistence is unknown. We report asymptomatic carriage of Leptospira in 39% (33/85) of wild, free-ranging sea lions sampled during the epizootic season, and asymptomatic seroconversion with chronic asymptomatic carriage in a rehabilitated sea lion. This is the first report of asymptomatic carriage in wild, free-ranging California sea lions and the first example of seroconversion and asymptomatic chronic carriage in a sea lion. Detection of asymptomatic chronic carriage of Leptospira in California sea lions, a species known to suffer significant disease and mortality from the same Leptospira strain, goes against widely-held notions regarding leptospirosis in accidental versus maintenance host species. Further, chronic carriage could provide a mechanism for persistent circulation of Leptospira in the California sea lion population, particularly if these animals shed infectious leptospires for months to years.
Li, Xu; Huang, Hua; Song, Xiaomin; Wang, Yanli; Xu, Hang; Teng, Maikun; Gong, Weimin
2-Dehydro-3-deoxygalactarate (DDG) aldolase is a member of the class II aldolase family and plays an important role in the pyruvate-metabolism pathway, catalyzing the reversible aldol cleavage of DDG to pyruvate and tartronic semialdehyde. As it is a potential novel antibiotic target, it is necessary to elucidate the catalytic mechanism of DDG aldolase. To determine the crystal structure, crystals of DDG aldolase from Leptospira interrogans were obtained by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method. The crystals diffracted to 2.2 Å resolution using a Cu Kα rotating-anode X-ray source. The crystal belonged to space group C2, with unit-cell parameters a = 293.5, b = 125.6, c = 87.6 Å, β = 100.9°. The V M is calculated to be 2.4 Å3 Da−1, assuming there to be 12 protein molecules in the asymmetric unit. PMID:17142914
Marshall, R B; Winter, P J; Yanagawa, R
Antigenic variants of Leptospira interrogans serovars copenhageni and hebdomadis were examined by bacterial restriction endonuclease DNA analysis with EcoRI, XhoI, SalI, BstEII, and HindIII as the digesting enzymes. The antigenic variants were stable cloned strains which had been cultivated in media containing homologous immune serum. One of the strains examined has been reported elsewhere (R. Yanagawa and J. Takashima, Infect. Immun. 10:1439-1442) as having an antigenic makeup which more closely resembles serovar kremastos than the serovar hebdomadis parent. The closely antigenically related but naturally occurring serovars icterhaemorrhagiae strain RGA and copenhageni strain M20 were examined in parallel. No differences could be shown between the hebdomadis parent and any of its mutants. Serovars copenhageni and icterohaemorrhagiae produced patterns which differed in the high-molecular-weight bands only. The Shibaura parent strain did not differ from copenhageni M20, but the Shibaura M1 strain differed from the other mutants and from icterohaemorrhagiae RGA in its high-molecular-weight bands. Images PMID:6092434
Belli, Patrick; Artois, Marc; Djelouadji, Zoheira
We report the first two cases of pulmonary presence of leptospires in apparently healthy rats captured in a city park in Lyon (France). Only renal carriage of Leptospira has been described in the literature. Blood serology was performed in parallel with molecular and histological analyses of the kidney and lung samples. We isolated leptospires from the kidneys of two out of three seropositive wild rats. These results were confirmed by specific detection of pathogenic Leptospira by real-time PCR. Moreover, Leptospira DNA was detected in lung tissues. Immunohistochemistry and Warthin-Starry staining revealed that leptospires were present on the surface of the ciliated epithelium of the bronchi. Using PCR of the rrs (16S) gene and Multispacer Sequence Typing, DNA extracts of the kidney and lung were identified as belonging to Leptospira interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae “CHU Réunion.” This first observation of the presence Leptospira in the lung with simultaneous renal carriage will require further study in future on several target organs to gain a better understanding of the Leptospira infection in wild rat. PMID:27800495
Gummow, B; Myburgh, J G; Thompson, P N; van der Lugt, J J; Spencer, B T
Three case studies involving Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona outbreaks within mixed farming systems in South Africa are described. On 2 farms, pigs constituted the main enterprise with cattle and sheep of secondary importance. On each of these 2 farms, abortion due to L. pomona in sows was confirmed by culture, and antibody titres to pomona were detected in cattle, sheep, horses and dogs. On the 3rd farm, a piggery was of secondary importance to cattle farming. Abortion and death in cows occurred on this farm and serology showed titres to various serovars, including pomona. L. pomona was also isolated from bovine urine, an aborted bovine foetus and kidneys from slaughtered pigs. This particular case study was regarded as clinically atypical in that adult Jersey cattle died of acute leptospirosis in a semiarid region of South Africa. In all 3 case studies, the poor management of pig effluent and of the drinking water and its sources played a pivotal role in the transmission of the disease. Inadequate vaccination of animals against Leptospira and poor record-keeping within the secondary farming enterprises were also contributing factors to the spread of leptospirosis.
Gerritsen, M J; Koopmans, M J; Peterse, D; Olyhoek, T
Transmission of Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo subtype hardjobovis from naturally infected sheep to uninfected sheep and calves was studied. A microscopic agglutination test and ELISA were used to determine specific antibody responses in serum. Polymerase chain reaction was used to detect bacterial shedding in urine. Six sheep were derived from a dairy farm where cows were infected with L hardjobovis. Three of these sheep were seropositive for L hardjobovis, and 1 also shed leptospires in the urine. The other 2 sheep shed leptospires in the urine 7 days after the first observation date. The 6 sheep were placed on an isolated pasture together with a second group of 6 noninfected sheep. During the observation period of 140 days, 1 sheep of the second group became infected with L hardjobovis. On 5 consecutive days, a urine mixture from the 4 infected sheep was sprayed on the heads of 4 noninfected calves. Within 56 days, all calves that had been sprayed with urine shed L hardjobovis in the urine and became seropositive for L hardjobovis.
Monte, Leonardo Garcia; Ridieri, Karine Forster; Jorge, Sérgio; Oliveira, Natasha Rodrigues; Hartwig, Daiane Drawanz; Amaral, Marta Gonçalves; Hartleben, Cláudia Pinho; Dellagostin, Odir Antonio
Cattle are commonly infected with pathogenic leptospires, and similarly to rodents, they excrete the bacteria in their urine and can transmit the pathogen from animal to animal or animal to human. Thus, surveillance and monitoring systems for detection of new Leptospira serovars are important for the control of leptospirosis. Here, we report the isolation of a spirochete from a stillborn bovine foetus and its characterization by immunological and molecular techniques. A variable number tandem repeat profile using seven discriminatory primers identified the spirochete as belonging to species Leptospira interrogans serogroup Australis serovar Muenchen. A phenotypic analysis using monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against leptospiral membrane-associated proteins confirmed the expression of important virulence and pathogenicity factors (LipL32 and LigBrep). Out of 120 reference sera tested, 22 positive (36.66%) and 9 negative (15%) also reacted with the new isolate. Furthermore, the serovar Muenchen isolate was virulent in hamster model. The animal inoculated developed acute lethal infection characterized by hepatic, pulmonary and renal lesions. Local isolates exhibited unique characteristics that differed from those of reference strains; therefore, isolation of leptospires is useful in the surveillance of local pathogenic serovars. In conclusion, the data obtained from this study can contribute to the epidemiological understanding and control of leptospirosis in southern Brazil.
Aragón-Martínez, Arianna; Olivera-Gómez, León D; Jiménez-Domínguez, Darwin
Factors that alter the dynamics of ecologic systems can influence transmission of infectious diseases and may lead to decreases in natural populations. Leptospirosis is a cosmopolitan disease of zoonotic importance that affects most mammals. At the southern Gulf of Mexico, Antillean manatees (Trichechus manatus manatus) inhabit highly variable environments, with extended floods during the rainy season and drought conditions during the dry season that affect food availability and the thermal environment for manatees. We tested for changes in prevalence and titers of antibodies to 12 serovars of Leptospira interrogans in manatees between dry and rainy seasons. We determined titers for L. interrogans through microscopic agglutination tests (MAT) from 10 manatees, six during the dry season (DS), and six during the rainy season (RS) in Laguna de las Ilusiones, a landlocked lake hosting a population of about 20 manatees. All individuals were antibody positive (titers ≥ 100) to at least one serovar. The serovars bataviae, bratislava, canicola, and icterohaemorrhagiae had overall prevalences ≥ 50%; bataviae, bratislava, and canicola had prevalences ≥ 50% during both seasons. Serovars icterohaemorrhagiae and pyrogenes had prevalences ≥ 50% during DS and pomona, tarassovi, wolfii, and autumnalis during RS. Significant differences in prevalence between seasons were found for pomona, tarassovi, and autumnalis. Titers of tarassovi, wolfii, autumnalis, and bataviae were significantly higher during RS. There was a high prevalence of L. interrogans during the RS independent of high availability of plant foods, coinciding with the epizootiology of the bacteria that are endemic to tropical regions. Another factor possibly influencing prevalence is high anthropogenic pressure at the lake, causing an increase in potential sources of infection. Because of possible cross-reaction in MAT, further research is needed on the molecular discrimination of serovars in animals in the
Catalano-Dupuy, Daniela L.; Musumeci, Matías A.; López-Rivero, Arleth; Ceccarelli, Eduardo A.
Leptospira interrogans is a bacterium that is capable of infecting animals and humans, and its infection causes leptospirosis with a range of symptoms from flu-like to severe illness and death. Despite being a bacteria, Leptospira interrogans contains a plastidic class ferredoxin-NADP(H) reductase (FNR) with high catalytic efficiency, at difference from the bacterial class FNRs. These flavoenzymes catalyze the electron transfer between NADP(H) and ferredoxins or flavodoxins. The inclusion of a plastidic FNR in Leptospira metabolism and in its parasitic life cycle is not currently understood. Bioinformatic analyses of the available genomic and proteins sequences showed that the presence of this enzyme in nonphotosynthetic bacteria is restricted to the Leptospira genus and that a [4Fe-4S] ferredoxin (LB107) encoded by the Leptospira genome may be the natural substrate of the enzyme. Leptospira FNR (LepFNR) displayed high diaphorase activity using artificial acceptors and functioned as a ferric reductase. LepFNR displayed cytochrome c reductase activity with the Leptospira LB107 ferredoxin with an optimum at pH 6.5. Structural stability analysis demonstrates that LepFNR is one of the most stable FNRs analyzed to date. The persistence of a native folded LepFNR structure was detected in up to 6 M urea, a condition in which the enzyme retains 38% activity. In silico analysis indicates that the high LepFNR stability might be due to robust interactions between the FAD and the NADP+ domains of the protein. The limited bacterial distribution of plastidic class FNRs and the biochemical and structural properties of LepFNR emphasize the uniqueness of this enzyme in the Leptospira metabolism. Our studies show that in L. interrogans a plastidic-type FNR exchanges electrons with a bacterial-type ferredoxin, process which has not been previously observed in nature. PMID:22039544
Zhukova, Anna; Fernandes, Luis Guilherme; Hugon, Perrine; Pappas, Christopher J.; Sismeiro, Odile; Coppée, Jean-Yves; Becavin, Christophe; Malabat, Christophe; Eshghi, Azad; Zhang, Jun-Jie; Yang, Frank X.; Picardeau, Mathieu
Leptospira are emerging zoonotic pathogens transmitted from animals to humans typically through contaminated environmental sources of water and soil. Regulatory pathways of pathogenic Leptospira spp. underlying the adaptive response to different hosts and environmental conditions remains elusive. In this study, we provide the first global Transcriptional Start Site (TSS) map of a Leptospira species. RNA was obtained from the pathogen Leptospira interrogans grown at 30°C (optimal in vitro temperature) and 37°C (host temperature) and selectively enriched for 5′ ends of native transcripts. A total of 2865 and 2866 primary TSS (pTSS) were predicted in the genome of L. interrogans at 30 and 37°C, respectively. The majority of the pTSSs were located between 0 and 10 nucleotides from the translational start site, suggesting that leaderless transcripts are a common feature of the leptospiral translational landscape. Comparative differential RNA-sequencing (dRNA-seq) analysis revealed conservation of most pTSS at 30 and 37°C. Promoter prediction algorithms allow the identification of the binding sites of the alternative sigma factor sigma 54. However, other motifs were not identified indicating that Leptospira consensus promoter sequences are inherently different from the Escherichia coli model. RNA sequencing also identified 277 and 226 putative small regulatory RNAs (sRNAs) at 30 and 37°C, respectively, including eight validated sRNAs by Northern blots. These results provide the first global view of TSS and the repertoire of sRNAs in L. interrogans. These data will establish a foundation for future experimental work on gene regulation under various environmental conditions including those in the host. PMID:28154810
Eshghi, Azad; Henderson, Jeremy; Trent, M Stephen; Picardeau, Mathieu
Leptospirosis is an emerging disease with an annual occurrence of over 1 million human cases worldwide. Pathogenic Leptospira bacteria are maintained in zoonotic cycles involving a diverse array of mammals, with the capacity to survive outside the host in aquatic environments. Survival in the diverse environments encountered by Leptospira likely requires various adaptive mechanisms. Little is known about Leptospira outer membrane modification systems, which may contribute to the capacity of these bacteria to successfully inhabit and colonize diverse environments and animal hosts. Leptospira bacteria carry two genes annotated as UDP-3-O-[3-hydroxymyristoyl] glucosamine N-acyltransferase genes (la0512 and la4326 [lpxD1 and lpxD2]) that in other bacteria are involved in the early steps of biosynthesis of lipid A, the membrane lipid anchor of lipopolysaccharide. Inactivation of only one of these genes, la0512/lpxD1, imparted sensitivity to the host physiological temperature (37°C) and rendered the bacteria avirulent in an animal infection model. Polymyxin B sensitivity assays revealed compromised outer membrane integrity in the lpxD1 mutant at host physiological temperature, but structural analysis of lipid A in the mutant revealed only minor changes in the lipid A moiety compared to that found in the wild-type strain. In accordance with this, an in trans complementation restored the phenotypes to a level comparable to that of the wild-type strain. These results suggest that the gene annotated as lpxD1 in Leptospira interrogans plays an important role in temperature adaptation and virulence in the animal infection model.
Lee, S H; Kim, K A; Park, Y G; Seong, I W; Kim, M J; Lee, Y J
It has been suggested that leptospiral hemolysins are important in the virulence and pathogenesis of leptospirosis. We have isolated an Escherichia coli clone carrying the 7.8kb DNA insert from a genomic library of Leptospira interrogans serovar lai by plaque hybridization using a sequence derived from the sphingomyelinase C gene (sphA) of L. borgpetersenii. The clone showed a clear beta-hemolytic zone on sheep blood agar and high hemolytic activities on both human and sheep erythrocytes in liquid assays. The clone carried at least two genes responsible for the hemolytic activities, encoded by two open reading frames of 1662 and 816 nucleotides, which are named sphH and hap-1 (hemolysis associated protein-1), respectively. The SphH showed 75% homology to the SphA at the amino acid level, and the Hap-1 showed no significant homology in major databases. Interestingly, however, E. coli cells harboring sphH did not show sphingomyelinase or phospholipase activities. Moreover, SphH-mediated hemolysis was osmotically protected by polyethylene glycol 5000, suggesting that the hemolysis is likely to be caused by pore formation on the membrane. The SphH was successfully expressed in E. coli as a histidine (His)-SphH fusion protein. Both sphH and hap-1 were highly conserved among the Leptospira species, except for the absence of sphH in non-pathogenic L. biflexa serovar patoc. We concluded that the SphH is a novel hemolysin of a pathogenic Leptospira species, which may be a putative pore-forming protein.
Ozuru, Ryo; Saito, Mitsumasa; Kanemaru, Takaaki; Miyahara, Satoshi; Villanueva, Sharon Y. A. M.; Murray, Gerald L.; Adler, Ben; Fujii, Jun; Yoshida, Shin-ichi
Leptospirosis is one of the most widespread zoonoses in the world, and its most severe form in humans, “Weil’s disease,” may lead to jaundice, hemorrhage, renal failure, pulmonary hemorrhage syndrome, and sometimes,fatal multiple organ failure. Although the mechanisms underlying jaundice in leptospirosis have been gradually unraveled, the pathophysiology and distribution of leptospires during the early stage of infection are not well understood. Therefore, we investigated the hamster leptospirosis model, which is the accepted animal model of human Weil’s disease, by using an in vivo imaging system to observe the whole bodies of animals infected with Leptospira interrogans and to identify the colonization and growth sites of the leptospires during the early phase of infection. Hamsters, infected subcutaneously with 104 bioluminescent leptospires, were analyzed by in vivo imaging, organ culture, and microscopy. The results showed that the luminescence from the leptospires spread through each hamster’s body sequentially. The luminescence was first detected at the injection site only, and finally spread to the central abdomen, in the liver area. Additionally, the luminescence observed in the adipose tissue was the earliest detectable compared with the other organs, indicating that the leptospires colonized the adipose tissue at the early stage of leptospirosis. Adipose tissue cultures of the leptospires became positive earlier than the blood cultures. Microscopic analysis revealed that the leptospires colonized the inner walls of the blood vessels in the adipose tissue. In conclusion, this is the first study to report that adipose tissue is an important colonization site for leptospires, as demonstrated by microscopy and culture analyses of adipose tissue in the hamster model of Weil’s disease. PMID:28245231
Eshghi, Azad; Henderson, Jeremy; Trent, M. Stephen
Leptospirosis is an emerging disease with an annual occurrence of over 1 million human cases worldwide. Pathogenic Leptospira bacteria are maintained in zoonotic cycles involving a diverse array of mammals, with the capacity to survive outside the host in aquatic environments. Survival in the diverse environments encountered by Leptospira likely requires various adaptive mechanisms. Little is known about Leptospira outer membrane modification systems, which may contribute to the capacity of these bacteria to successfully inhabit and colonize diverse environments and animal hosts. Leptospira bacteria carry two genes annotated as UDP-3-O-[3-hydroxymyristoyl] glucosamine N-acyltransferase genes (la0512 and la4326 [lpxD1 and lpxD2]) that in other bacteria are involved in the early steps of biosynthesis of lipid A, the membrane lipid anchor of lipopolysaccharide. Inactivation of only one of these genes, la0512/lpxD1, imparted sensitivity to the host physiological temperature (37°C) and rendered the bacteria avirulent in an animal infection model. Polymyxin B sensitivity assays revealed compromised outer membrane integrity in the lpxD1 mutant at host physiological temperature, but structural analysis of lipid A in the mutant revealed only minor changes in the lipid A moiety compared to that found in the wild-type strain. In accordance with this, an in trans complementation restored the phenotypes to a level comparable to that of the wild-type strain. These results suggest that the gene annotated as lpxD1 in Leptospira interrogans plays an important role in temperature adaptation and virulence in the animal infection model. PMID:26283339
Cosate, M R V; Soares, S C; Mendes, T A; Raittz, R T; Moreira, E C; Leite, R; Fernandes, G R; Haddad, J P A; Ortega, J Miguel
Leptospirosis is caused by pathogenic bacteria of the genus Leptospira spp. This neglected re-emergent disease has global distribution and relevance in veterinary production. Here, we report the whole-genome sequence and annotation of Leptospira interrogans serovar Hardjo subtype Hardjoprajitno strain Norma, isolated from cattle in a livestock leptospirosis outbreak in Brazil.
Kremer, Frederico S; Eslabão, Marcus R; Jorge, Sérgio; Oliveira, Natasha R; Labonde, Julia; Santos, Monize NP; Monte, Leonardo G; Grassmann, André A; Cunha, Carlos EP; Forster, Karine M; Moreno, Luísa Z; Moreno, Andrea M; Campos, Vinicius F; McBride, Alan JA; Pinto, Luciano S; Dellagostin, Odir A
In the present paper, we announce new draft genomes of four Leptospira interrogans strains named Acegua, RCA, Prea, and Capivara. These strains were isolated in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, from cattle, dog, Brazilian guinea pig, and capybara, respectively. PMID:27074260
Soares, S. C.; Mendes, T. A.; Raittz, R. T.; Moreira, E. C.; Leite, R.; Fernandes, G. R.; Haddad, J. P. A.; Ortega, J. Miguel
Leptospirosis is caused by pathogenic bacteria of the genus Leptospira spp. This neglected re-emergent disease has global distribution and relevance in veterinary production. Here, we report the whole-genome sequence and annotation of Leptospira interrogans serovar Hardjo subtype Hardjoprajitno strain Norma, isolated from cattle in a livestock leptospirosis outbreak in Brazil. PMID:26543126
Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona is commonly isolated from a variety of wildlife and domesticated livestock. It is difficult to assess whether disease outbreaks with serovar Pomona in given animal populations are due to endemic infections or accidental exposure. Unlike many leptospiral serovars...
O' Doherty, E; Berry, D P; O' Grady, L; Sayers, R
A survey of management practices in 309 Irish dairy herds was used to identify risk factors for the presence of antibodies to Salmonella, Neospora caninum and Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo in extensively managed unvaccinated dairy herds. A previous study documented a herd-level seroprevalence in bulk milk of 49%, 19% and 86% for Salmonella, Neospora caninum and leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo, respectively in the unvaccinated proportion of these 309 herds in 2009. Association analyses in the present study were carried out using multiple logistic regression models. Herds where cattle were purchased or introduced had a greater likelihood of being positive to leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo (P<0.01) and Salmonella (P<0.01). Larger herds had a greater likelihood of recording a positive bulk milk antibody result to leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo (P<0.05). Herds that practiced year round calving were more likely to be positive to Neospora caninum (P<0.05) compared to herds with a spring-calving season, with no difference in risk between herds that practiced split calving compared to herds that practiced spring calving. No association was found between presence of dogs on farms and prevalence of Neospora caninum possibly due to limited access of dogs to infected materials including afterbirths. The information from this study will assist in the design of suitable control programmes for the diseases under investigation in pasture-based livestock systems.
Kremer, Frederico S; Eslabão, Marcus R; Jorge, Sérgio; Oliveira, Natasha R; Labonde, Julia; Santos, Monize N P; Monte, Leonardo G; Grassmann, André A; Cunha, Carlos E P; Forster, Karine M; Moreno, Luísa Z; Moreno, Andrea M; Campos, Vinicius F; McBride, Alan J A; Pinto, Luciano S; Dellagostin, Odir A
In the present paper, we announce new draft genomes of four Leptospira interrogans strains named Acegua, RCA, Prea, and Capivara. These strains were isolated in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, from cattle, dog, Brazilian guinea pig, and capybara, respectively.
Monaris, D.; Sbrogio-Almeida, M. E.; Dib, C. C.; Canhamero, T. A.; Souza, G. O.; Vasconcellos, S. A.; Ferreira, L. C. S.
Leptospirosis is a global zoonotic disease caused by different Leptospira species, such as Leptospira interrogans, that colonize the renal tubules of wild and domestic animals. Thus far, attempts to develop effective leptospirosis vaccines, both for humans and animals, have failed to induce immune responses capable of conferring protection and simultaneously preventing renal colonization. In this study, we evaluated the protective immunity induced by subunit vaccines containing seven different recombinant Leptospira interrogans outer membrane proteins, including the carboxy-terminal portion of the immunoglobulinlike protein A (LigAC) and six novel antigens, combined with aluminum hydroxide (alum) or Salmonella flagellin (FliC) as adjuvants. Hamsters vaccinated with the different formulations elicited high antigen-specific antibody titers. Immunization with LigAC, either with alum or flagellin, conferred protective immunity but did not prevent renal colonization. Similarly, animals immunized with LigAC or LigAC coadministered with six leptospiral proteins with alum adjuvant conferred protection but did not reduce renal colonization. In contrast, immunizing animals with the pool of seven antigens in combination with flagellin conferred protection and significantly reduced renal colonization by the pathogen. The present study emphasizes the relevance of antigen composition and added adjuvant in the efficacy of antileptospirosis subunit vaccines and shows the complex relationship between immune responses and renal colonization by the pathogen. PMID:26108285
Monaris, D; Sbrogio-Almeida, M E; Dib, C C; Canhamero, T A; Souza, G O; Vasconcellos, S A; Ferreira, L C S; Abreu, P A E
Leptospirosis is a global zoonotic disease caused by different Leptospira species, such as Leptospira interrogans, that colonize the renal tubules of wild and domestic animals. Thus far, attempts to develop effective leptospirosis vaccines, both for humans and animals, have failed to induce immune responses capable of conferring protection and simultaneously preventing renal colonization. In this study, we evaluated the protective immunity induced by subunit vaccines containing seven different recombinant Leptospira interrogans outer membrane proteins, including the carboxy-terminal portion of the immunoglobulinlike protein A (LigA(C)) and six novel antigens, combined with aluminum hydroxide (alum) or Salmonella flagellin (FliC) as adjuvants. Hamsters vaccinated with the different formulations elicited high antigen-specific antibody titers. Immunization with LigA(C), either with alum or flagellin, conferred protective immunity but did not prevent renal colonization. Similarly, animals immunized with LigA(C) or LigA(C) coadministered with six leptospiral proteins with alum adjuvant conferred protection but did not reduce renal colonization. In contrast, immunizing animals with the pool of seven antigens in combination with flagellin conferred protection and significantly reduced renal colonization by the pathogen. The present study emphasizes the relevance of antigen composition and added adjuvant in the efficacy of antileptospirosis subunit vaccines and shows the complex relationship between immune responses and renal colonization by the pathogen.
Akerstedt, Johan; Lillehaug, Atle; Larsen, Inger-Lise; Eide, Nina E; Arnemo, Jon M; Handeland, Kjell
Prevalence of antibodies reactive to canine distemper virus (CDV), canine adenovirus type 1 (CAV-1), Leptospira interrogans serovars Canicola and Icterohaemorrhagiae, and Toxoplasma gondii were examined in free-ranging Scandinavian canids. Sampling included 275 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) from mainland Norway, 60 arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from the high-arctic islands of Svalbard, and 98 wolves (Canis lupus) from the joint Swedish-Norwegian population. Methods used included virus neutralization tests for CDV and CAV-1, a microscopic agglutination test for L. interrogans, and a direct agglutination test for T. gondii. High prevalence of antibody to CAV-1 was identified in red foxes (59.6%), wolves (67.7%), and arctic foxes (37.8%). The prevalence of antibody to CDV varied between 9.6% and 12.3% in the three species. Antibodies to L. interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae were found in 9.9% of the red foxes and 8.4% of the wolves sampled, whereas no antibody-positive arctic foxes were found. All animals were antibody-negative for L. interrogans serovar Canicola. Antibodies to T. gondii were found in 66.9, 51.7, and 18.6% of red foxes, arctic foxes and wolves, respectively. Significantly more adults than juveniles were antibody-positive for CDV in red foxes and arctic foxes, for CAV-1 in wolves, and for T. gondii in red foxes and wolves. There was a general tendency for adult female red foxes to have a higher prevalence of antibodies for CDV than adult males; this difference was statistically significant. The results indicate that CDV and CAV-1 are endemic in red foxes and wolves on the Scandinavian mainland and in arctic foxes on Svalbard. Although infection with L. interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae was relatively common in wild canids on mainland Norway, it was not found on Svalbard, where the maintenance host (Rattus norvegicus) is absent. All three species are commonly exposed to T. gondii through predation on infected intermediate hosts.
Devlin, Amy A; Halvorsen, Priya J; Miller, Jennifer C; Laster, Scott M
Leptospira interrogans (L. interrogans), the causative agent of leptospirosis, is a widespread zoonotic spirochete that lives a dual lifestyle. L. interrogans infects mice, rats, and wildlife in a persistent and asymptomatic fashion, while also causing productive and acute infections in other mammals such as humans and hamsters. Infections in humans can be fatal, accompanied by a cytokine storm and shock-like symptoms. Production of IL-10 has been noted in both rodent and human infections which has led a number of investigators to hypothesize that IL-10 plays a role in the pathogenesis of this disease. To test this hypothesis we have compared bacteremia and the cytokine response of normal and IL-10 deficient C57Bl/6 mice following ip infection with L. interrogans. In normal mice bacterial 16s mRNA was detected in both lung and kidney tissues within a day after infection. Levels of 16s mRNA then dropped in both organs with complete elimination from the lung by day 3 but persistence in the kidney for 7days after infection. In contrast, in IL-10 deficient mice, the organism was eliminated more rapidly from the kidney. We found that infection of both control and IL-10 deficient mice produced similar levels of a number of pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNAs. On the other hand, IFN-γ mRNA was only induced in IL-10 deficient mice. These results support the hypothesis that L. interrogans ability to induce IL-10, which in turn prevents production of IFN-γ and inhibits T cell immunity, may contribute to the persistent growth of this microorganism in the murine kidney.
Choy, Henry A
Microbial pathogens acquire the immediate imperative to avoid or counteract the formidable defense of innate immunity as soon as they overcome the initial physical barriers of the host. Many have adopted the strategy of directly disrupting the complement system through the capture of its components, using proteins on the pathogen's surface. In leptospirosis, pathogenic Leptospira spp. are resistant to complement-mediated killing, in contrast to the highly vulnerable non-pathogenic strains. Pathogenic L. interrogans uses LenA/LfhA and LcpA to respectively sequester and commandeer the function of two regulators, factor H and C4BP, which in turn bind C3b or C4b to interrupt the alternative or classical pathways of complement activation. LigB, another surface-proximal protein originally characterized as an adhesin binding multiple host proteins, has other activities suggesting its importance early in infection, including binding extracellular matrix, plasma, and cutaneous repair proteins and inhibiting hemostasis. In this study, we used a recent model of ectopic expression of LigB in the saprophyte, L. biflexa, to test the hypothesis that LigB also interacts with complement proteins C3b and C4b to promote the virulence of L. interrogans. The surface expression of LigB partially rescued the non-pathogen from killing by 5% normal human serum, showing 1.3- to 48-fold greater survival 4 to 6 d following exposure to complement than cultures of the non-expressing parental strain. Recombinant LigB7'-12 comprising the LigB-specific immunoglobulin repeats binds directly to human complement proteins, C3b and C4b, with respective K(d)s of 43±26 nM and 69±18 nM. Repeats 9 to 11, previously shown to contain the binding domain for fibronectin and fibrinogen, are also important in LigB-complement interactions, which interfere with the alternative and classical pathways measured by complement-mediated hemolysis of erythrocytes. Thus, LigB is an adaptable interface for L. interrogans
Director, A; Penna, B; Hamond, C; Loureiro, A P; Martins, G; Medeiros, M A; Lilenbaum, W
A total of 15 adult ewes from one flock known to be seroreactive for leptospirosis was studied. Urine and vaginal fluid were collected from each animal to test for the presence of leptospires using bacterial culture and conventional PCR methods. One pure culture of Leptospira sp. was obtained from the vaginal fluid sample of a non-pregnant ewe. The isolate was characterized by DNA sequencing of the rrs and secY genes, variable-number of tandem-repeats (VNTR) analysis and serogrouping, and the isolate was typed as Leptospira interrogans serogroup Sejroe serovar Hardjo type Hardjoprajitno. This report indicates the presence of viable Leptospira in the vaginal fluid of a ewe, suggesting the potential for venereal transmission of leptospires in sheep.
Cosate, M R V; Barouni, A S; Moreira, E C; Veloso, I F; Gomes, M T R; Salas, C E
We report the initial characterization of a leptospiral isolate, Leptospira interrogans, serogroup Sejroe, serovar Hardjo, genotype Hardjoprajitno, strain Norma, and its relatedness with L. interrogans, serogroup Sejroe, serovar Hardjo, genotype Hardjoprajitno, strain Hardjo and Leptospira borgpetersenii, serogroup Sejroe, serovar Hardjo, genotype Hardjobovis, strain Sponselee. The Norma strain singled out during a leptospirosis outbreak in cattle immunized with antigens from the reference strain Hardjoprajitno (OMS). By applying a microscopic agglutination serological test (MAT) to cattle (n = 2966) with symptoms of leptospirosis between 2003 and 2007, more than 50% of sera were found positive for one of the following serotypes: Hardjoprajitno (31-21%), Hardjo Norma (46-40%), Hardjo hardjobovis (18-10%), Mini (8-4%) and Wolffi (7-4%). In immunization trials using six isolates plus Norma isolate, the remission of MAT in these isolates was observed following 6 months of the initial vaccination. To provide molecular ground for the high MAT Norma frequency found in these isolates, a DNA polymorphic analysis was conducted by comparing the Norma isolate with reference strains Hardjoprajitno and Sponselee. The polymorphic analysis in secY showed five base changes in Norma relative to Hardjoprajitno strain, corresponding to 98% identity, while Sponselee displayed 49 polymorphic sites relative to the Hardjoprajitno strain, representing 80% identity. The alignment of secY translated sequences shows no differences between Hardjoprajitno and Norma, and eight polymorphisms between genotype hardjoprajttno and strain Sponselee. Three-dimensional modelling located these variations within the loop region connecting helices 7 and 8 from secY which is less conserved. DNA sequencing of 23S ribosomal conserved fragment revealed a single polymorphism between Hardjoprajitno and Norma, and 13 polymorphisms between strains Sponselee, Hardjoprajitno and Norma. The differences between
Matsunaga, James; Haake, David A.
Pathogenic species of Leptospira are the causative agents of leptospirosis, a zoonotic disease that causes mortality and morbidity worldwide. The understanding of the virulence mechanisms of Leptospira spp is still at an early stage due to the limited number of genetic tools available for this microorganism. The development of random transposon mutagenesis in pathogenic strains a decade ago has contributed to the identification of several virulence factors. In this study, we used the transposon sequencing (Tn-Seq) technique, which combines transposon mutagenesis with massive parallel sequencing, to study the in vivo fitness of a pool of Leptospira interrogans mutants. We infected hamsters with a pool of 42 mutants (input pool), which included control mutants with insertions in four genes previously analyzed by virulence testing (loa22, ligB, flaA1, and lic20111) and 23 mutants with disrupted signal transduction genes. We quantified the mutants in different tissues (blood, kidney and liver) at 4 days post-challenge by high-throughput sequencing and compared the frequencies of mutants recovered from tissues to their frequencies in the input pool. Control mutants that were less fit in the Tn-Seq experiment were attenuated for virulence when tested separately in the hamster model of lethal leptospirosis. Control mutants with unaltered fitness were as virulent as the wild-type strain. We identified two mutants with the transposon inserted in the same putative adenylate/guanylate cyclase gene (lic12327) that had reduced in vivo fitness in blood, kidney and liver. Both lic12327 mutants were attenuated for virulence when tested individually in hamsters. Growth of the control mutants and lic12327 mutants in culture medium were similar to that of the wild-type strain. These results demonstrate the feasibility of screening large pools of L. interrogans transposon mutants for those with altered fitness, and potentially attenuated virulence, by transposon sequencing. PMID
Lourdault, Kristel; Matsunaga, James; Haake, David A
Pathogenic species of Leptospira are the causative agents of leptospirosis, a zoonotic disease that causes mortality and morbidity worldwide. The understanding of the virulence mechanisms of Leptospira spp is still at an early stage due to the limited number of genetic tools available for this microorganism. The development of random transposon mutagenesis in pathogenic strains a decade ago has contributed to the identification of several virulence factors. In this study, we used the transposon sequencing (Tn-Seq) technique, which combines transposon mutagenesis with massive parallel sequencing, to study the in vivo fitness of a pool of Leptospira interrogans mutants. We infected hamsters with a pool of 42 mutants (input pool), which included control mutants with insertions in four genes previously analyzed by virulence testing (loa22, ligB, flaA1, and lic20111) and 23 mutants with disrupted signal transduction genes. We quantified the mutants in different tissues (blood, kidney and liver) at 4 days post-challenge by high-throughput sequencing and compared the frequencies of mutants recovered from tissues to their frequencies in the input pool. Control mutants that were less fit in the Tn-Seq experiment were attenuated for virulence when tested separately in the hamster model of lethal leptospirosis. Control mutants with unaltered fitness were as virulent as the wild-type strain. We identified two mutants with the transposon inserted in the same putative adenylate/guanylate cyclase gene (lic12327) that had reduced in vivo fitness in blood, kidney and liver. Both lic12327 mutants were attenuated for virulence when tested individually in hamsters. Growth of the control mutants and lic12327 mutants in culture medium were similar to that of the wild-type strain. These results demonstrate the feasibility of screening large pools of L. interrogans transposon mutants for those with altered fitness, and potentially attenuated virulence, by transposon sequencing.
Adler, B; Faine, S; Gordon, L M
The enzyme-liked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was compared with the standard microscopic agglutination test (MAT) as a method for detecting antibodies against Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo in sheep. Peak antibody levels detected by the 2 tests occurred at different times following experimental infection of sheep. In serums from flocks of sheep with naturally acquired infection there was a 95% correlation between MAT and ELISA with respect to the presence or absence of antibody to serovar hardjo, although the levels of correlation of the titres of the 2 tests was low. The 2 tests appeared to measure different antigen-antibody systems. The ELISA would be a useful test for screening large numbers of serums for antibodies to L. interrogans serovar hardjo.
Ratet, Gwenn; Veyrier, Frédéric J; Fanton d'Andon, Martine; Kammerscheit, Xavier; Nicola, Marie-Anne; Picardeau, Mathieu; Boneca, Ivo G; Werts, Catherine
Leptospira (L.) interrogans are bacteria responsible for a worldwide reemerging zoonosis. Some animals asymptomatically carry L. interrogans in their kidneys and excrete bacteria in their urine, which contaminates the environment. Humans are infected through skin contact with leptospires and develop mild to severe leptospirosis. Previous attempts to construct fluorescent or bioluminescent leptospires, which would permit in vivo visualization and investigation of host defense mechanisms during infection, have been unsuccessful. Using a firefly luciferase cassette and random transposition tools, we constructed bioluminescent chromosomal transformants in saprophytic and pathogenic leptospires. The kinetics of leptospiral dissemination in mice, after intraperitoneal inoculation with a pathogenic transformant, was tracked by bioluminescence using live imaging. For infective doses of 106 to 107 bacteria, we observed dissemination and exponential growth of leptospires in the blood, followed by apparent clearance of bacteria. However, with 2×108 bacteria, the septicemia led to the death of mice within 3 days post-infection. In surviving mice, one week after infection, pathogenic leptospires reemerged only in the kidneys, where they multiplied and reached a steady state, leading to a sustained chronic renal infection. These experiments reveal that a fraction of the leptospiral population escapes the potent blood defense, and colonizes a defined number of niches in the kidneys, proportional to the infective dose. Antibiotic treatments failed to eradicate leptospires that colonized the kidneys, although they were effective against L. interrogans if administered before or early after infection. To conclude, mice infected with bioluminescent L. interrogans proved to be a novel model to study both acute and chronic leptospirosis, and revealed that, in the kidneys, leptospires are protected from antibiotics. These bioluminescent leptospires represent a powerful new tool to
Liu, H; Dai, B; Jing, B; Wu, W; Li, S; Fang, Z; Zhao, H; Ye, D; Yan, R; Liu, J; Song, S; Yang, Y; Zhang, Y; Liu, F; Tu, Y; Yang, H; Huang, Z; Liang, L; Hu, L; Zhao, M
A genomic library of L. interrogans serovar lai strain 017 has been constructed using lambda gt11 as the vector. DNA was partially digested by two blunt-end restriction enzymes, then methylated with EcoR I methylase; after EcoR I linker was added to the DNA, the linker-ended DNA was ligated to the dephosphorylated EcoR I digested lambda gt11 arms. The recombined DNA was packaged in vitro, and used to transduct E. coli Y1090 for amplification. There were 2.1 x 10(6) recombinant bacteriophages as recognized by their ability to form white plaques plated on Lac host in the presence of both IPTG and X-Ga1. A positive clone, designated lambda DL12, was screened with a rabbit anti-serum against L. interrogans serovar lai from the genomic library. The DNA from lambda DL12 was subcloned into plasmid pUC18. A recombinant (designated as pDL121) was obtained. SDS-PAGE analysis indicated that a 23 kd was expressed in E. coli JM 103 harboring pDL121. Western blotting analysis showed that a specific protein band molecular weight of 23 kd could be recognized by the rabbit antiserum against L. interrogans serovar lai strain 017.
Durfee, P T; Presidente, P J
Of 12 brush-tailed possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) inoculated with Leptospira interrogans serovar balcanica 11 developed migroagglutination (MA) antibody to jardjo antigen by 14 days postincubation (PI). Leptospiruria was observed in 2 possums 117 to 145 days PI. Of 6 possums inoculated with serovar hardjo 4 developed low short-lived titres by day 18 PI. Two of 3 wombats (Vombatus ursinus) inoculated with balcanica had high MA titres (greater than or equal to 1:128) by day 16 PI and leptospiruria occurred by day 16. One wombat inoculated with hardjo developed a low MA titre. Low transitory MA titres to hardjo were found in 1 of 3 water rats (Hydromys chrysogaster) after inoculation with balcanica and 1 of 2 given hardjo. Histopathological examination of kidneys revealed mild to moderately severe focal interstitial nephritis in 4 of 8 possums, in 2 wombats and in 2 water rats following experimental infection with balcanica. Similar lesions were observed in 2 of 4 possums, 1 wombat and 2 water rats following experimental infection with hardjo.
Eshghi, Azad; Pinne, Marija; Haake, David A.; Zuerner, Richard L.; Frank, Ami
Recent studies have revealed that bacterial protein methylation is a widespread post-translational modification that is required for virulence in selected pathogenic bacteria. In particular, altered methylation of outer-membrane proteins has been shown to modulate the effectiveness of the host immune response. In this study, 2D gel electrophoresis combined with MALDI-TOF MS identified a Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni strain Fiocruz L1-130 protein, corresponding to ORF LIC11848, which undergoes extensive and differential methylation of glutamic acid residues. Immunofluorescence microscopy implicated LIC11848 as a surface-exposed outer-membrane protein, prompting the designation OmpL32. Indirect immunofluorescence microscopy of golden Syrian hamster liver and kidney sections revealed expression of OmpL32 during colonization of these organs. Identification of methylated surface-exposed outer-membrane proteins, such as OmpL32, provides a foundation for delineating the role of this post-translational modification in leptospiral virulence. PMID:22174381
Teixeira, Aline F.; de Morais, Zenaide M.; Kirchgatter, Karin; Romero, Eliete C.; Vasconcellos, Silvio A.; Nascimento, Ana Lucia T. O.
Leptospirosis is an acute febrile disease caused by pathogenic spirochetes of the genus Leptospira. It is considered an important re-emerging infectious disease that affects humans worldwide. The knowledge about the mechanisms by which pathogenic leptospires invade and colonize the host remains limited since very few virulence factors contributing to the pathogenesis of the disease have been identified. Here, we report the identification and characterization of two new leptospiral proteins with OmpA-like domains. The recombinant proteins, which exhibit extracellular matrix-binding properties, are called Lsa46 - LIC13479 and Lsa77 - LIC10050 (Leptospiral surface adhesins of 46 and 77 kDa, respectively). Attachment of Lsa46 and Lsa77 to laminin was specific, dose dependent and saturable, with KD values of 24.3 ± 17.0 and 53.0 ± 17.5 nM, respectively. Lsa46 and Lsa77 also bind plasma fibronectin, and both adhesins are plasminogen (PLG)-interacting proteins, capable of generating plasmin (PLA) and as such, increase the proteolytic ability of leptospires. The proteins corresponding to Lsa46 and Lsa77 are present in virulent L. interrogans L1-130 and in saprophyte L. biflexa Patoc 1 strains, as detected by immunofluorescence. The adhesins are recognized by human leptospirosis serum samples at the onset and convalescent phases of the disease, suggesting that they are expressed during infection. Taken together, our data could offer valuable information to the understanding of leptospiral pathogenesis. PMID:25849456
Zimpel, Cristina Kraemer; Grazziotin, Ana Laura; de Barros Filho, Ivan Roque; Guimaraes, Ana Marcia de Sa; dos Santos, Leonilda Correia; de Moraes, Wanderlei; Cubas, Zalmir Silvino; de Oliveira, Marcos Jose; Pituco, Edviges Maristela; Lara, Maria do Carmo Custódio de Souza Hunold; Villalobos, Eliana Monteforte Cassaro; Silva, Lília Marcia Paulin; Cunha, Elenice Maria Sequetin; Castro, Vanessa; Biondo, Alexander Welker
A large number of Brazilian zoos keep many endangered species of deer, however, very few disease surveillance studies have been conducted among captive cervids. Blood samples from 32 Brazilian deer (Blastocerus dichotomus, Mazama nana and Mazama americana) kept in captivity at Bela Vista Biological Sanctuary (Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil) were investigated for 10 ruminant pathogens, with the aims of monitoring deer health status and evaluating any potential zoonotic risk. Deer serum samples were tested for Brucella abortus, Leptospira (23 serovars), Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum, bovine viral diarrhea virus, infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus, foot-and-mouth disease virus, western equine encephalitis virus, eastern equine encephalitis virus and Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus. Antibodies against T. gondii (15.6%), N. caninum (6.2%) and L. interrogans serogroup Serjoe (3.1%) were detected. The serological results for all other infectious agents were negative. The deer were considered to be clinically healthy and asymptomatic regarding any disease. Compared with studies on free-ranging deer, the prevalences of the same agents tested among the captive deer kept at the Sanctuary were lower, thus indicating good sanitary conditions and high-quality management practices at the zoo.
Zhang, Yi-Xuan; Geng, Yan; Yang, Jun-Wei; Guo, Xiao-Kui; Zhao, Guo-Ping
Our previous work confirmed that Sph2/LA1029 was a sphigomyelinase-like hemolyisn of Leptospira interrogans serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae serovar Lai. Characteristics of both hemolytic and cytotoxic activities of Sph2 were reported in this paper. Sph2 was a heat-labile neutral hemolysin and had similar hemolytic behavior as the typical sphingomyelinase C of Staphylococcus aureus upon sheep erythrocytes. The cytotoxic activity of Sph2 was shown in mammalian cells such as BALB/C mouse lymphocytes and macrophages, as well as human L-02 liver cells. Transmission electron microscopic observation showed that the Sph2 treated BALB/C mouse lymphocytes were swollen and ruptured with membrane breakage. They also demonstrated condensed chromatin as a high-density area. Cytoskeleton changes were observed via fluorescence confocal microscope in Sph2 treated BALB/C mouse lymphocytes and macrophages, where both cytokine IL-1beta and IL-6 were induced. In addition, typical apoptotic morphological features were observed in Sph2 treated L-02 cells via transmission electron microscope and the percentage of apoptotic cells did increase after the Sph2 treatment detected by flow cytometry. Therefore, Sph2 was likely an apoptosis-inducing factor of human L-02 liver cells.
Jimenez-Coello, Matilde; Ortega-Pacheco, Antonio; Guzman-Marin, Eugenia; Guiris-Andrade, Dario M; Martinez-Figueroa, Laura; Acosta-Viana, Karla Y
This investigation determined the presence and prevalence of the zoonotic agents Leptospira interrogans, Trypanosoma cruzi, and Aspergillus spp. in the stray dog population (a total of 224 stray dogs) in an urban area of Southern Mexico. Blood serum samples were taken from all dogs, and root hair samples were taken from dogs with skin lesions and partial alopecia. IgG antibodies for L. interrogans from 10 serovars were detected using the microscopic agglutination test. Immunofluorescence antibody test and Western blot assay were used for serologic diagnosis of T. cruzi. The Sabouraud medium was used to isolate Aspergillus spp. Prevalence of L. interrogans was 4.9%, which was determined by identifying only serovars Pyrogenes, which accounted for 3.6%, and Tarassovi, which constituted 1.3%, with titers from 1:100 to 1:800. Additionally, T. cruzi antibodies were detected in 4.5% of the dogs. Skin lesions were found in 43% of the dogs (98/224), and 35 cultures were positive for Aspergillus spp. (35.7%, p < 0.05, 95% confidence interval 2.45-3.67), identified as A. niger (82.8%), A. flavus (14.3%), and A. terreus (2.9%). This study demonstrates the presence of certain zoonotic agents (bacteria, protozoa, and fungi) in stray dogs living within the studied area. Dogs play an important role in the transmission of diseases that are potentially harmful to humans. Although the prevalence of canine leptospirosis and trypanosomiasis is not high in Southern Mexico compared with other tropical regions of Mexico, the presence of these zoonotic agents in the stray dog population demonstrates that the stray dog population in this region is a significant reservoir and potential source of infection in humans. Special care should be taken when handling stray dogs that exhibit skin lesions with partial alopecia, since a pathological Aspergillus sp. fungus may be present.
Dai, B; Xiao, J; Yan, Z; Shen, C; Li, S; Fang, Z
The etiological agents of leptospirosis are the pathogenic leptospires (L. interrogans sensu lato) which can be divided into 223 serovars organized into 23 serogroups. The serovar remains the basic taxon, but serotyping may now be accomplished and recognized by acceptable methods. Complementary molecular approaches are being used extensively to assess genetic relatedness amongst leptospires with restriction endonuclese analysis (REA), pulse field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and DNA-DNA hybridization as well established tools. However, the method is cumbersome and unsuitable for routine application. To develop a sensitive and specific method for identification of pathogenic leptospires, a genomic library of L. interrogans sensu stricto serovar lai was constructed with the plasmid vector pUC9. A recombinant plasmid, designated pCX7 which has homologous fragment of pathogenic leptospires was screened from the bank. pCX7 could recognize pathogenic leptospiral DNA fragment 1.7 kb of strain 017 without cross hybridization to nonpathogenic leptospiral DNA. Inserted fragment of pCX7 DNA sequencing was performed by Dr. Yan Zhengxin (Max-Plank-Institut fur Biology, Tubingen, Germany). Insert fragment was cloned into pBluescript and sequenced by using ABI(Applied Bio. Systems, Model 373A). Nucleotide sequences were analyzed by Dr. Xiao Jianguo (Texas University Medical School and School of Public Health, Center for Infectious Diseases) using a suit of computer program (NIH). One open reading frame of 306 nucleotids were identified. There were identifiable initiation codons, terminators, pribnow box and sextama box within the sequenced regions. These results further confirmed that the little homology between L. interrogans sensu strito and L. borgpeterseni serovar javanica, L. inadai serovar ranarun and serovar manhao (L. genomospecies 2), L. biflexa serovar patoc, L. illini. pCX7 DNA probe could provide a base for identification and classification of leptospires.
Montiel-Arteaga, Ana; Atilano, Daniel; Ayanegui, Alejandra; Ceballos, Gerardo; Suzán, Gerardo
Interest in the study of infectious diseases of wildlife has grown in recent decades and now focuses on understanding host-parasite dynamics and factors involved in disease occurrence. The black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) is a useful species for this type of investigation because it lives in heterogeneous landscapes where human activities take place, and its populations are structured as a metapopulation. Our goal was to determine if colony area, density, and proximity to human settlements are associated with prevalence of antibodies to Leptospira interrogans in black-tailed prairie dogs of northwestern Chihuahua State, Mexico. We captured 266 prairie dogs in 11 colonies in 2009 and analyzed 248 serum samples with the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) for antibody to any of the 12 pathogenic serovars of L. interrogans. Serologically positive test results for only serovars Bratislava, Canicola, Celledoni, and Tarassovi were considered for statistical analysis. Almost 80% of sera were positive for at least one pathogenic serovar (MAT titer ≥1∶80). The highest recorded antibody prevalences were to serovars Bratislava and Canicola. Correlation analysis showed a negative relationship between L. interrogans antibody prevalence and colony area (r = -0.125, P<0.005), suggesting that animals living in larger colonies were at a lower risk than those in smaller colonies. The correlation between the serovar Canicola and distance was negative (r = -0.171, P<0.007), and this relationship may be explained by the presence of domestic dogs associated with human dwellings. This is the first study of Leptospira spp. antibody prevalence in prairie dogs, and it provides valuable insights into the dynamics of leptospirosis in threatened wildlife species. Further studies are needed to evaluate the impact of Leptospira serovars in metapopulations of prairie dogs and other domestic and wild mammals in grassland communities.
Shimabukuro, Fabio Hiroto; da Costa, Veruska Maia; da Silva, Rodrigo Costa; Langoni, Hélio; da Silva, Aristeu Vieira; de Carvalho, Lídia Raquel; Domingues, Paulo Francisco
Mice experimentally infected with a pathogenic strain of Leptospira interrogans serovar Canicola produced false negative results (prozone effect) in a microscopic agglutination test (MAT). This prozone effect occurred in several serum samples collected at different post-infection times, but it was more prominent in samples collected from seven-42 days post-infection and for 1:50 and 1:100 sample dilutions. This phenomenon was correlated with increased antibody titres in the early post-infection phase. While prozone effects are often observed in serological agglutination assays for the diagnosis of animal brucellosis and human syphilis, they are not widely reported in leptospirosis MATs. PMID:23903987
Bicout, Dominique J.; Kodjo, Angeli; Artois, Marc; Djelouadji, Zoheira
Background Urban leptospirosis has increasingly been reported in both developing and developed countries. The control of the disease is limited because our understanding of basic aspects of the epidemiology, including the transmission routes of leptospires among rat populations, remains incomplete. Through the ability to distinguish among Leptospira strains in rats, multispacer sequence typing (MST) could provide a modern understanding of Leptospira epidemiology; however, to our knowledge, the distribution of Leptospira strains among urban rat colonies has not been investigated using MST. Aims and Methodology The objective of this study was to identify the Leptospira strains present in rats (Rattus norvegicus) in Lyon (France) using MST and to characterize their spatial distribution. Kidneys and urine were collected from rats trapped live in seven locations in the city and in one suburban location. Each location was considered to represent a rat colony. Bacterial cultures and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) assays were performed, and the L. interrogans DNA identified was then genotyped using MST. The distributions of Leptospira strains were spatially described. Key Results Among 84 wild rats, MST profiles were obtained in 35 of 37 rats that had a positive result for L. interrogans by bacterial culture and/or qPCR analyses. All of the MST profiles were related to reference strains previously isolated from human patients that belong to the serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae and the serovars [strain(s)] Copenhageni [Wijinberg or M20] (n = 26), Icterohaemorrhagiae [CHU Réunion] (n = 7), Icterohaemorrhagiae [R1] (n = 1) and Copenhageni [Shibaura 9] (n = 1). Each colony was infected with leptospires having the same MST profile. Major Conclusions This study demonstrated that MST could be used for the purpose of field studies, either on culture isolates or on DNA extracted from kidneys and urine, to distinguish among L. interrogans isolates in rats. MST could
Pinne, Marija; Haake, David A.
Leptospirosis is a zoonosis with worldwide distribution caused by pathogenic spirochetes belonging to the genus Leptospira. The leptospiral life cycle involves transmission via fresh water and colonization of the renal tubules of their reservoir hosts or infection of accidental hosts, including humans. Bacterial outer membrane proteins (OMPs), particularly those with surface-exposed regions, play crucial roles in virulence mechanisms of pathogens and the adaptation to various environmental conditions, including those of the mammalian host. Little is known about the surface-exposed OMPs in Leptospira, particularly those with outer membrane-spanning domains. Herein, we describe a comprehensive strategy for identification and characterization of leptospiral transmembrane OMPs. The genomic sequence of L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni strain Fiocruz L1–130 allowed us to employ the β-barrel prediction programs, PRED-TMBB and TMBETA-NET, to identify potential transmembrane OMPs. Several complementary methods were used to characterize four novel OMPs, designated OmpL36, OmpL37, OmpL47 and OmpL54. In addition to surface immunofluorescence and surface biotinylation, we describe surface proteolysis of intact leptospires as an improved method for determining the surface exposure of leptospiral proteins. Membrane integration was confirmed using techniques for removal of peripheral membrane proteins. We also demonstrate deficiencies in the Triton X-114 fractionation method for assessing the outer membrane localization of transmembrane OMPs. Our results establish a broadly applicable strategy for the elucidation of novel surface-exposed outer membrane-spanning proteins of Leptospira, an essential step in the discovery of potential virulence factors, diagnostic antigens and vaccine candidates. PMID:19562037
Lee, Seoung Hoon; Kim, Sangduk; Park, Seung Chul; Kim, Min Ja
Leptospirosis is a spirochetal zoonosis that causes an acute febrile systemic illness in humans. Leptospira sp. hemolysins have been shown to be virulence factors for the pathogenesis of leptospirosis. Previously, we cloned a hemolysin SphH of Leptospira interrogans serovar lai, a homologue of L. borgpetersenii sphingomyelinase (SphA), from a genomic library (S. H. Lee, K. A. Kim, Y. K. Kim, I. W. Seong, M. J. Kim, and Y. J. Lee, Gene 254:19-28, 2000). Escherichia coli lysate harboring the sphH showed high hemolytic activities on sheep erythrocytes. However, it neither showed sphingomyelinase nor phospholipase activities, in contrast to SphA which was known to have sphingomyelinase activity. Interestingly, the SphH-mediated hemolysis on erythrocytes was osmotically protected by PEG 5000, suggesting that the SphH might have caused pore formation on the erythrocyte membrane. In the present study, we have prepared the Leptospira hemolysin SphH and investigated its hemolytic and cytotoxic activities on mammalian cells. SphH was shown to be a pore-forming protein on several mammalian cells: When treated with the SphH, the sheep erythrocyte membranes formed pores, which were morphologically confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. Furthermore, the SphH-mediated cytotoxicities on mammalian cells were demonstrated by the release of LDH and by inverted microscopic examinations. Finally, the immune serum against the full-length hemolysin could effectively neutralize the SphH-mediated hemolytic and cytotoxic activities. In conclusion, these results suggest that the virulence of Leptospira SphH was due to the pore formation on mammalian cell membranes.
Lewis, Fraser I; Gunn, George J; McKendrick, Iain J; Murray, Fiona M
Leptospirosis is the most widespread zoonosis throughout the world and human mortality from severe disease forms is high even when optimal treatment is provided. Leptospirosis is also one of the most common causes of reproductive losses in cattle worldwide and is associated with significant economic costs to the dairy farming industry. Herds are tested for exposure to the causal organism either through serum testing of individual animals or through testing bulk milk samples. Using serum results from a commonly used enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) test for Leptospira interrogans serovar Hardjo (L. hardjo) on samples from 979 animals across 12 Scottish dairy herds and the corresponding bulk milk results, we develop a model that predicts the mean proportion of exposed animals in a herd conditional on the bulk milk test result. The data are analyzed through use of a Bayesian latent variable generalized linear mixed model to provide estimates of the true (but unobserved) level of exposure to the causal organism in each herd in addition to estimates of the accuracy of the serum ELISA. We estimate 95% confidence intervals for the accuracy of the serum ELISA of (0.688, 0.987) and (0.975, 0.998) for test sensitivity and specificity, respectively. Using a percentage positivity cutoff in bulk milk of at most 41% ensures that there is at least a 97.5% probability of less than 5% of the herd being exposed to L. hardjo. Our analyses provide strong statistical evidence in support of the validity of interpreting bulk milk samples as a proxy for individual animal serum testing. The combination of validity and cost-effectiveness of bulk milk testing has the potential to reduce the risk of human exposure to leptospirosis in addition to offering significant economic benefits to the dairy industry.
Pavan, María Elisa; Cairó, Fabián; Brihuega, Bibiana; Samartino, Luis
Outbreaks of leptospirosis occur regularly in Argentina, but little is known about their epidemiological relationships. We have analyzed the genetic diversity of a collection of 16 strains of Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona isolated from animals and humans in Argentina during the past 45 years. Genotyping was performed by multiple-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) using the loci VNTR4, VNTR7, VNTR9, VNTR10, VNTR19, VNTR23 and VNTR31, as described by Majed et al. [Identification of variable-number tandem-repeat loci in Leptospira interrogans sensu stricto. J Clin Microbiol 2005;43:539-45]. Clustering analysis revealed four new distinct MLVA genotypes, with a dominant one. Strains with this genotype were consistently isolated since 1960 to the present, mainly from cows and pigs, but also from humans, representing 75% of the total strains studied. These strains coexisted temporally and geographically with isolates presenting the other new genotypes. VNTR4 locus, with four different alleles, presented the highest diversity between the VNTR loci analyzed. MLVA patterns obtained will be useful for future diagnostic and epidemiological tracing analysis.
Moreno-Beas, Eduardo; Abalos, Pedro; Hidalgo-Hermoso, Ezequiel
Serum samples from 130 individuals representing 42 species of carnivores, ungulates, and primates from a population of captive mammals in Metropolitan Region in Chile were tested for antibodies against nine serovars of Leptospira interrogans using the microscopic agglutination test. Ten percent of the animals were seropositive to one or more serovars. Seroprevalence was significantly higher in ungulates (20.4%) compared to carnivores (3.8%) and primates (3.4%). There were no significant differences in seroprevalence among sex and age ranges. The most frequent serovar detected was Autumnalis, present in 53.4% of antibody-positive animals. Most positive animals had titers of ≤1 : 200, except for a maned wolf ( Chrysocyon brachyurus ) with titers of 1 : 400 against serovar Hardjo. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of Leptospira exposure detected in native endangered pudu ( Pudu puda ) and the first confirmation of exposure to L. interrogans in captive wild mammals in Chile. Leptospirosis should be considered as a differential diagnosis in future disease presentation for hepatitis or abortions in captive mammals in Chile.
Khan, M.A.; Goyal, S.M.; Diesch, S.L.; Mech, L.D.; Fritts, S.H.
Serum samples (n = 457) from wolves (Canis lupus) in northern Minnesota were collected from 1972 through 1986 and were tested for antibodies against Leptospira interrogans using a microtiter agglutination test. Twelve serovars included in the study were: australis, autumnalis, ballum, bataviae, bratislava, canicola, copenhageni, grippotyphosa, hardjo, pomona, pyrogenes, and tarassovi. Fifty-two (11%) sera had antibody titers of greater than or equal to 1:50 against one or more serovars of L. interrogans. The seroprevalence of different serovars in decreasing order was: grippotyphosa, bratislava, autumnalis, canicola, pomona, ballum, pyrogenes, hardjo, and copenhageni. No antibodies were found against australis, bataviae, and tarassovi. These results indicate that L. interrogans infection may occur in wolves of Minnesota.
Schowalter, D B; Chalmers, G A; Johnson, G R; Gunson, J R; Wynnyk, W P
The range of known occurrence of Leptospira interrogans serotype pomona is extended to Alberta in striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis); no evidence of L. sejroe was found. Reacting sera from skunks were confined to the southern portion of Alberta and adjacent Saskatchewan, although a number of reactors were found sufficiently further north in Saskatchewan suggesting that a different mode of infection may be functioning there. Of 95 skunk sera from near a dairy farm infected with serotype pomona 40% were reactors. Of 438 skunk sera from other areas only 5.7% were reactors; that difference was suggestive of transmission from cattle to skunks on the dairy farm. Of 22 skunk sera collected near the dairy farm in summer none were reactors, whereas 52% of skunk sera taken the previous and following winters were. That seasonal difference was not evident among sera from other locations.
O' Doherty, E; Sayers, R; O' Grady, L; Shalloo, L
The objective of the current study was to quantify the effects of exposure to Salmonella, Neospora caninum, and Leptospira interrogans serovar Hardjo (L. hardjo) on dairy farm profitability and to simulate the effect of vaccination for Salmonella and L. hardjo on dairy farm profitability. The production effects associated with exposure to each of these pathogens in study herds were defined under 3 categories: (1) milk production effects, (2) reproduction effects (including culling), and (3) mortality effects. The production effects associated with exposure to Salmonella, N. caninum, and L. hardjo were incorporated into the Moorepark Dairy Systems Model. In the analysis, herds negative for exposure to Salmonella, N. caninum, and L. hardjo were assumed baseline herds, with all results presented relative to this base. In simulations examining the effect of vaccination for Salmonella and L. hardjo on farm profitability, vaccinated herds (vaccination costs included) were considered as baseline herds and results were presented relative to this base. Total annual profits in unvaccinated herds were reduced by €77.31, €94.71, and €112.11 per cow at milk prices of €0.24, €0.29, and €0.34/L, respectively, as a result of exposure to Salmonella. In the current study, herds positive for exposure to Salmonella recorded a 316-kg reduction in milk yield, whereas no association was detected between exposure to N. caninum or L. hardjo and milk production. Exposure to both N. caninum and L. hardjo was associated with compromised reproductive performance. Herds positive for exposure to N. caninum and Salmonella had greater rates of adult cow mortality and calf mortality, respectively. Vaccination for both Salmonella and L. hardjo was associated with improved performance in study herds. Exposure to N. caninum resulted in a reduction in annual farm profits of €11.55, €12, and €12.44 per cow at each milk price, whereas exposure to L. hardjo resulted in a reduction in
Fontana, Célia; Lambert, Ambroise; Benaroudj, Nadia; Gasparini, David; Gorgette, Olivier; Cachet, Nathalie; Bomchil, Natalia; Picardeau, Mathieu
Pathogenic Leptospira strains are responsible for leptospirosis, a worldwide emerging zoonotic disease. These spirochetes are unique amongst bacteria because of their corkscrew-like cell morphology and their periplasmic flagella. Motility is reported as an important virulence determinant, probably favoring entry and dissemination of pathogenic Leptospira in the host. However, proteins constituting the periplasmic flagella and their role in cell shape, motility and virulence remain poorly described. In this study, we characterized a spontaneous L. interrogans mutant strain lacking motility, correlated with the loss of the characteristic hook-shaped ends, and virulence in the animal model. Whole genome sequencing allowed the identification of one nucleotide deletion in the fliM gene resulting in a premature stop codon, thereby preventing the production of flagellar motor switch protein FliM. Genetic complementation restored cell morphology, motility and virulence comparable to those of wild type cells. Analyses of purified periplasmic flagella revealed a defect in flagella assembly, resulting in shortened flagella compared to the wild type strain. This also correlated with a lower amount of major filament proteins FlaA and FlaB. Altogether, these findings demonstrate that FliM is required for full and correct assembly of the flagella which is essential for motility and virulence. PMID:27044038
Henry, Rebekah; Lo, Miranda; Khoo, Chenai; Zhang, Hailong; Boysen, Reinhard I.; Picardeau, Mathieu; Murray, Gerald L.; Bulach, Dieter M.
High concentrations of free metal ions in the environment can be detrimental to bacterial survival. However, bacteria utilize strategies, including the activation of stress response pathways and immobilizing chemical elements on their surface, to limit this toxicity. In this study, we characterized LA4131, the HtpX-like M48 metalloprotease from Leptospira interrogans, with a putative role in bacterial stress response and membrane homeostasis. Growth of the la4131 transposon mutant strain (L522) in 360 μM FeSO4 (10-fold the normal in vitro concentration) resulted in the production of an amorphous iron precipitate. Atomic force microscopy and transmission electron microscopy analysis of the strain demonstrated that precipitate production was associated with the generation and release of outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) from the leptospiral surface. Transcriptional studies indicated that inactivation of la4131 resulted in altered expression of a subset of metal toxicity and stress response genes. Combining these findings, this report describes OMV production in response to environmental stressors and associates OMV production with the in vitro activity of an HtpX-like metalloprotease. PMID:23709510
Surujballi, O; Howlett, C; Henning, D
Murine monoclonal antibodies were produced by immunizing BALB/c mice with a killed whole-cell antigen prepared from Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar hardjo type hardjobovis. Six of these antibodies recognized epitopes on the homologous antigen and on whole-cell antigen prepared from Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo type hardjoprajitno. These antibodies did not cross-react with whole-cell antigens prepared from L. borgpetersenii serovar sejroe, 10 other pathogenic Leptospira serovars, or the saprophytic Leptospira biflexa serovar patoc. Three other monoclonal antibodies reacted with antigens prepared from the 2 hardjo serovars and serovar sejroe but not with antigens from the 10 other pathogenic serovars, or serovar patoc. The epitopes recognized by all of the hardjo-specific antibodies and 2 of the 3 hardjo/sejroe-specific antibodies were susceptible to sodium meta-periodate oxidation. All of the antibodies were characterized by Western blots with the hardjobovis whole-cell antigen. Each of the 9 monoclonal antibodies was inhibited from binding to the hardjobovis antigen by bovine sera which were obtained from cattle experimentally infected with hardjobovis and from field cattle, with anti-serovar hardjo microscopic agglutination test antibody titres ranging from 100 to 12800. Some of these antibodies may be suitable for incorporation into competitive enzyme immunoassays for the specific detection of antibodies to either of the hardjo serovars. Images Figure 1. PMID:9918336
De Brito, T.; Prado, M. J.; Negreiros, V. A.; Nicastri, A. L.; Sakata, E. E.; Yasuda, P. H.; Santos, R. T.; Alves, V. A.
Guinea-pigs were experimentally infected with L. interrogans serovar copenhageni serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae and their liver and kidney were studied by immunoelectron microscopy using the post embedding indirect immunogold labelling technique. Primary antibody was a purified rabbit anti-serum produced against the same leptospiral strain used in the inoculum. Gold-labelled leptospiral antigen (LAg) was found close to cell membranes of hepatocytes, kidney tubular cells and endothelial cells of the interstitial capillaries of the kidney. Afterwards it was internalized by hepatic and tubular cells, and eventually found in lysosomes. Phagolysosomes of Kupffer cells were also found to contain remnants of degraded leptospires and gold-labelled LAg. Gold-labelled intact leptospires were detected at the enlarged intercellular spaces between hepatocytes at the areas of hepatic cell plate disarray, showing the potential for leptospiral migration during the septicaemic phase of the disease potentially contributing to the pathogenesis of the lesions. The affinity of leptospiral antigenic material for cell membranes suggests an initial interaction with cell surface proteins followed by its internalization and cell damage. The nature of antigenic material detected, however, remains undefined; it may be a toxin, an enzyme or any other factor/s involved in leptospiral virulence. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 Fig. 7 Fig. 8 PMID:1419779
Raja, Veerapandian; Shanmughapriya, Santhanam; Kanagavel, Murugesan; Artiushin, Sergey C.; Velineni, Sridhar; Timoney, John F.
Leptospirosis is a serious zoonosis that is underdiagnosed because of limited access to laboratory facilities in Southeast Asia, Central and South America, and Oceania. Timely diagnosis of locally distributed serovars of high virulence is crucial for successful care and outbreak management. Using pooled patient sera, an expression gene library of a virulent Leptospira interrogans serovar Autumnalis strain N2 isolated in South India was screened. The identified genes were characterized, and the purified recombinant proteins were used as antigens in IgM enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) either singly or in combination. Sera (n = 118) from cases of acute leptospirosis along with sera (n = 58) from healthy subjects were tested for reactivity with the identified proteins in an ELISA designed to detect specific IgM responses. We have identified nine immunoreactive proteins, ArgC, RecA, GlpF, FliD, TrmD, RplS, RnhB, Lp28.6, and Lrr44.9, which were found to be highly conserved among pathogenic leptospires. Apparently, the proteins ArgC, RecA, GlpF, FliD, TrmD, and Lrr44.9 are expressed during natural infection of the host and undetectable in in vitro cultures. Among all the recombinant proteins used as antigens in IgM ELISA, ArgC had the highest sensitivity and specificity, 89.8% and 95.5%, respectively, for the conclusive diagnosis of leptospirosis. The use of ArgC and RecA in combination for IgM ELISA increased the sensitivity and specificity to 95.7% and 94.9%, respectively. ArgC and RecA thus elicited specific IgM responses and were therefore effective in laboratory confirmation of Leptospira infection. PMID:26607308
Costa, Federico; Porter, Fleur Helena; Rodrigues, Gorete; Farias, Helena; de Faria, Marcus Tucunduva; Wunder, Elsio A; Osikowicz, Lynn M; Kosoy, Michael Y; Reis, Mitermayer Galvão; Ko, Albert I; Childs, James E
Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus) are reservoir hosts for zoonotic pathogens that cause significant morbidity and mortality in humans. Studies evaluating the prevalence of zoonotic pathogens in tropical Norway rat populations are rare, and data on co-infection with multiple pathogens are nonexistent. Herein, we describe the prevalence of leptospiral carriage, Seoul virus (SEOV), and Bartonella spp. infection independently, in addition to the rates of co-infection among urban, slum-dwelling Norway rats in Salvador, Brazil, trapped during the rainy season from June to August of 2010. These data were complemented with previously unpublished Leptospira and SEOV prevalence information collected in 1998. Immunofluorescence staining of kidney impressions was used to identify Leptospira interrogans in 2010, whereas isolation was used in 1998, and western blotting was used to detect SEOV antibodies in 2010, whereas enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was used in 1998: in 2010, Bartonella spp. were isolated from a subsample of rats. The most common pathogen in both years was Leptospira spp. (83%, n=142 in 1998, 63%, n=84 in 2010). SEOV was detected in 18% of individuals in both 1998 and 2010 (n=78 in 1998; n=73 in 2010), and two species of Bartonella were isolated from 5 of 26 rats (19%) tested in 2010. The prevalence of all agents increased significantly with rat mass/age. Acquisition of Leptospira spp. occurred at a younger mass/age than SEOV and Bartonella spp. infection, suggesting differences in the transmission dynamics of these pathogens. These data indicate that Norway rats in Salvador serve as reservoir hosts for all three of these zoonotic pathogens and that the high prevalence of leptospiral carriage in Salvador rats poses a high degree of risk to human health.
Porter, Fleur Helena; Rodrigues, Gorete; Farias, Helena; de Faria, Marcus Tucunduva; Wunder, Elsio A.; Osikowicz, Lynn M.; Kosoy, Michael Y.; Reis, Mitermayer Galvão; Ko, Albert I.; Childs, James E.
Abstract Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus) are reservoir hosts for zoonotic pathogens that cause significant morbidity and mortality in humans. Studies evaluating the prevalence of zoonotic pathogens in tropical Norway rat populations are rare, and data on co-infection with multiple pathogens are nonexistent. Herein, we describe the prevalence of leptospiral carriage, Seoul virus (SEOV), and Bartonella spp. infection independently, in addition to the rates of co-infection among urban, slum-dwelling Norway rats in Salvador, Brazil, trapped during the rainy season from June to August of 2010. These data were complemented with previously unpublished Leptospira and SEOV prevalence information collected in 1998. Immunofluorescence staining of kidney impressions was used to identify Leptospira interrogans in 2010, whereas isolation was used in 1998, and western blotting was used to detect SEOV antibodies in 2010, whereas enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was used in 1998: in 2010, Bartonella spp. were isolated from a subsample of rats. The most common pathogen in both years was Leptospira spp. (83%, n=142 in 1998, 63%, n=84 in 2010). SEOV was detected in 18% of individuals in both 1998 and 2010 (n=78 in 1998; n=73 in 2010), and two species of Bartonella were isolated from 5 of 26 rats (19%) tested in 2010. The prevalence of all agents increased significantly with rat mass/age. Acquisition of Leptospira spp. occurred at a younger mass/age than SEOV and Bartonella spp. infection, suggesting differences in the transmission dynamics of these pathogens. These data indicate that Norway rats in Salvador serve as reservoir hosts for all three of these zoonotic pathogens and that the high prevalence of leptospiral carriage in Salvador rats poses a high degree of risk to human health. PMID:24359425
Fujita, Rie; Koizumi, Nobuo; Sugiyama, Hiromu; Tomizawa, Rina; Sato, Ryoichi; Ohnishi, Makoto
Leptospirosis, a zoonotic infection with worldwide prevalence, is caused by pathogenic spirochaetes of Leptospira spp., and exhibits an extremely broad clinical spectrum in human patients. Although previous studies indicated that specific serovars or genotypes of Leptospira spp. were associated with severe leptospirosis or its outbreak, the mechanism underlying the difference in virulence of the various Leptospira serotypes or genotypes remains unclear. The present study addresses this question by measuring and comparing bacterial burden and cytokine gene expression in hamsters infected with strains of two L. interrogans serovars Manilae (highly virulent) and Hebdomadis (less virulent). The histopathology of kidney, liver, and lung tissues was also investigated in infected hamsters. A significantly higher bacterial burden was observed in liver tissues of hamsters infected with serovar Manilae than those infected with serovar Hebdomadis (p < 0.01). The average copy number of the leptospiral genome was 1,302 and 20,559 in blood and liver, respectively, of hamsters infected with serovar Manilae and 1,340 and 4,896, respectively, in hamsters infected with serovar Hebdomadis. The expression levels of mip1alpha in blood; tgfbeta, il1beta, mip1alpha, il10, tnfalpha and cox2 in liver; and tgfbeta, il6, tnfalpha and cox2 in lung tissue were significantly higher in hamsters infected with serovar Manilae than those infected with serovar Hebdomadis (p < 0.05). In addition, infection with serovar Manilae resulted in a significantly larger number of hamsters with tnfalpha upregulation (p = 0.04). Severe distortion of tubular cell arrangement and disruption of renal tubules in kidney tissues and hemorrhage in lung tissues were observed in Manilae-infected hamsters. These results demonstrate that serovar Manilae multiplied more efficiently in liver tissues and induced significantly higher expression of genes encoding pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines than serovar Hebdomadis
Jacobs, A A C; Harks, F; Hoeijmakers, M; Collell, M; Segers, R P A M
The safety and protective efficacy of a new octavalent combination vaccine containing inactivated Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae, Parvovirus, and Leptospira interrogans (sensu lato) serogroups Canicola, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Australis (Bratislava), Grippotyphosa, Pomona and Tarassovi - Porcilis(®) Ery+Parvo+Lepto - was evaluated in laboratory studies and under field conditions. The safety (2× overdose and repeated dose) was tested in 26 gilts. In this study, neither vaccine related temperature increase nor other systemic reactions were observed after intramuscular vaccination. No local reactions were observed except for one animal that had a small local reaction (2cm diameter) that lasted for 5 days after the third vaccination. Efficacy was tested in 40 gilts. A group of 20 gilts was vaccinated at 20 and 24 weeks of age with Porcilis(®) Ery+Parvo+Lepto and a group of 20 age- and source-matched animals served as the control group. The gilts were inseminated at 41 weeks or 66 weeks of age and were challenged with serovar Pomona 10 weeks after insemination, corresponding to 6 months (n=2×10) and 12 months (n=2×10) after the last vaccination. After both the 6- and 12-month challenges the control animals developed clinical signs (fever, lethargy and anorexia) and leptospiraemia as determined by positive blood culture. In addition, both the 6- and 12-month challenges resulted in death of 21% and 27% of the total number of foetuses in the control groups, respectively. Clinical signs and leptospiraemia were statistically significantly lower in vaccinated gilts after both the 6- and 12-month challenges. In addition, foetal death was statistically significantly lower (3% and 2%, respectively) in vaccinated gilts after both the 6- and 12 month challenges. The vaccine was tested further under field conditions on a Portuguese farm with a history of an increasing abortion rate associated with a Leptospira serovar Pomona infection (confirmed by PCR and serology). This study was
Thornley, C. N.; Baker, M. G.; Weinstein, P.; Maas, E. W.
The objective was to describe the current epidemiology and trends in New Zealand human leptospirosis, using descriptive epidemiology of laboratory surveillance and disease notification data, 1990-8. The annual incidence of human leptospirosis in New Zealand 1990-8 was 44 per 100,000. Incidence was highest among meat processing workers (163.5/100,000), livestock farm workers (91.7), and forestry-related workers (24.1). The most commonly detected serovars were Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar (sv.) hardjo (hardjobovis) (46.1%), L. interrogans sv. pomona (24.4%) and L. borgpetersenii sv. ballum (11.9%). The annual incidence of leptospirosis declined from 5.7/100,000 in 1990-2 to 2.9/100,000 in 1996-8. Incidence of L. borgpetersenii sv. hardjo and L. interrogans sv. pomona infection declined, while incidence of L. borgpetersenii sv. ballum infection increased. The incidence of human leptospirosis in New Zealand remains high for a temperate developed country. Increasing L. borgpetersenii sv. ballum case numbers suggest changing transmission patterns via direct or indirect exposure to contaminated surface water. Targeted and evaluated disease control programmes should be renewed. PMID:11895088
Fortes-Gabriel, Elsa; Carreira, Teresa; Vieira, Maria Luísa
Rodents play an important role in the transmission of pathogenic Leptospira spp. However, in Angola, neither the natural reservoirs of these spirochetes nor leptospirosis diagnosis has been considered. Regarding this gap, we captured rodents in Luanda and Huambo provinces to identify circulating Leptospira spp. Rodent kidney tissue was cultured and DNA amplified and sequenced. Culture isolates were evaluated for pathogenic status and typing with rabbit antisera; polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing were also performed. A total of 37 rodents were captured: Rattus rattus (15, 40.5%), Rattus norvegicus (9, 24.3%), and Mus musculus (13, 35.2%). Leptospiral DNA was amplified in eight (21.6%) kidney samples. From the cultures, we obtained four (10.8%) Leptospira isolates belonging to the Icterohaemorrhagiae and Ballum serogroups of Leptospira interrogans and Leptospira borgpetersenii genospecies, respectively. This study provides information about circulating leptospires spread by rats and mice in Angola. PMID:26928840
Fortes-Gabriel, Elsa; Carreira, Teresa; Vieira, Maria Luísa
Rodents play an important role in the transmission of pathogenic Leptospira spp. However, in Angola, neither the natural reservoirs of these spirochetes nor leptospirosis diagnosis has been considered. Regarding this gap, we captured rodents in Luanda and Huambo provinces to identify circulating Leptospira spp. Rodent kidney tissue was cultured and DNA amplified and sequenced. Culture isolates were evaluated for pathogenic status and typing with rabbit antisera; polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing were also performed. A total of 37 rodents were captured: Rattus rattus (15, 40.5%), Rattus norvegicus (9, 24.3%), and Mus musculus (13, 35.2%). Leptospiral DNA was amplified in eight (21.6%) kidney samples. From the cultures, we obtained four (10.8%) Leptospira isolates belonging to the Icterohaemorrhagiae and Ballum serogroups of Leptospira interrogans and Leptospira borgpetersenii genospecies, respectively. This study provides information about circulating leptospires spread by rats and mice in Angola.
Siqueira, Gabriela H.; Atzingen, Marina V.; Alves, Ivy J.; de Morais, Zenaide M.; Vasconcellos, Silvio A.; Nascimento, Ana L. T. O.
We report cloning, expression, purification, and characterization of three predicted leptospiral membrane proteins (LIC11360, LIC11009, and LIC11975). In silico analysis and proteinase K accessibility data suggest that these proteins might be surface exposed. We show that proteins encoded by LIC11360, LIC11009 and LIC11975 genes interact with laminin in a dose-dependent and saturable manner. The proteins are referred to as leptospiral surface adhesions 23, 26, and 36 (Lsa23, Lsa26, and Lsa36), respectively. These proteins also bind plasminogen and generate active plasmin. Attachment of Lsa23 and Lsa36 to fibronectin occurs through the involvement of the 30-kDa and 70-kDa heparin-binding domains of the ligand. Dose-dependent, specific-binding of Lsa23 to the complement regulator C4BP and to a lesser extent, to factor H, suggests that this protein may interfere with the complement cascade pathways. Leptospira spp. may use these interactions as possible mechanisms during the establishment of infection. PMID:23958908
Australian Bacterial Pathogenesis Program, Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Victoria 3800, Australia (1), Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Structural and Functional Microbial Genomics, Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Victoria 3800, Australia (2), Davi...
Leptospirosis is a globally important zoonotic disease. Humans can become infected via exposure to infected animals or contaminated water or soil. Iron is an essential element for many cellular processes and its sequestration in the host environment constitutes an immune defence mechanism. Pathoge...
Millán, Javier; Candela, Mónica G; López-Bao, José Vicente; Pereira, Marian; Jiménez, María Angeles; León-Vizcaíno, Luis
Leptospirosis is a zoonosis that affects humans, domestic animals, and wildlife. Carnivores are at the top of the feeding chain, thus being exposed to pathogens through their preys. From June 2004 to April 2007, we analyzed for evidences of contact with 14 serovars of Leptospira interrogans Sensu Lato serum (analyzed by indirect Microscopic Agglutination Test) and urine or kidney samples (analyzed by microscopic observation, immunostaining and culture) collected from 201 wild and domestic carnivores, including 26 free-living Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus), 33 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), 33 Egyptian mongooses (Herpestes ichneumon), 25 common genets (Genetta genetta), two Eurasian badgers (Meles meles) and one Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra), and 53 free-roaming cats and 28 rural dogs in protected areas in Andalusia (southern Spain). Twenty-three percent of the animals presented evidences of contact, being the prevalence similar among wild (23.5%) and domestic species (22.2%). Contact with Lesptospira was detected in all the species but the otter. Prevalence was: lynx (11% by bacteriological detection, 32% by serology), fox (0%, 47%), mongoose (5%, 20%), genet (0%, 12%), badger (0%, 50%), cat (20%, 14%), dog (only serology: 36%). Serovar Icterohemorragiae accounted for 2/3 of the cases. Serovar Canicola was detected in half of the positive dogs and one lynx. Other serovars detected were Ballum, Sejroë, and Australis. No macroscopic lesions were observed in necropsied animals that showed evidence of contact with the agent, although histopathologic lesions (chiefly chronic interstitial nephritis) were observed in 7 out of the 11 microscopically analyzed individuals. Thus, L. interrogans may cause previously unrecorded disease in wild carnivores in Spain. Wild and free-roaming carnivores may not act as reservoir of L. interrogans but as a dead-end hosts, though the dog may act as reservoir of serovar Canicola. Carnivores are apparently good sentinels for the epidemiological
Wang, Yanzhuo; Zhuang, Xuran; Zhong, Yi; Zhang, Cuicai; Zhang, Yan; Zeng, Lingbing; Zhu, Yongzhang; He, Ping; Dong, Ke; Pal, Utpal; Guo, Xiaokui; Qin, Jinhong
Leptospirosis, caused by pathogenic Leptospira, is a worldwide zoonotic infection. The genus Leptospira includes at least 21 species clustered into three groups—pathogens, non-pathogens, and intermediates—based on 16S rRNA phylogeny. Research on Leptospira is difficult due to slow growth and poor transformability of the pathogens. Recent identification of extrachromosomal elements besides the two chromosomes in L. interrogans has provided new insight into genome complexity of the genus Leptospira. The large size, low copy number, and high similarity of the sequence of these extrachromosomal elements with the chromosomes present challenges in isolating and detecting them without careful genome assembly. In this study, two extrachromosomal elements were identified in L. borgpetersenii serovar Ballum strain 56604 through whole genome assembly combined with S1 nuclease digestion following pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (S1-PFGE) analysis. Further, extrachromosomal elements in additional 15 Chinese epidemic strains of Leptospira, comprising L. borgpetersenii, L. weilii, and L. interrogans, were successfully separated and identified, independent of genome sequence data. Southern blot hybridization with extrachromosomal element-specific probes, designated as lcp1, lcp2 and lcp3-rep, further confirmed their occurrences as extrachromosomal elements. In total, 24 plasmids were detected in 13 out of 15 tested strains, among which 11 can hybridize with the lcp1-rep probe and 11 with the lcp2-rep probe, whereas two can hybridize with the lcp3-rep probe. None of them are likely to be species-specific. Blastp search of the lcp1, lcp2, and lcp3-rep genes with a nonredundant protein database of Leptospira species genomes showed that their homologous sequences are widely distributed among clades of pathogens but not non-pathogens or intermediates. These results suggest that the plasmids are widely distributed in Leptospira species, and further elucidation of their biological
Millán, Javier; García, Emilio J; Oleaga, Álvaro; López-Bao, José Vicente; Llaneza, Luis; Palacios, Vicente; Candela, Mónica G; Cevidanes, Aitor; Rodríguez, Alejandro; León-Vizcaíno, Luis
The Iberian wolf (Canis lupus) is the top predator in the Iberian environments in which it lives, feeding on a wide range of species, thus encountering a wide range of disease agents. Therefore, the wolf can serve as sentinel of environmental contamination with pathogens. We investigated the exposure of free-living wolves to 14 serovars of Leptospira interrogans sensu lato. Kidney samples from 49 wolves collected from 2010-2013 in northwestern Spain were analysed by culture, direct immunofluorescence and polymerase chain reaction. Tissue fluids were analysed for antibodies by a microscopic agglutination test. Ten wolves (observed prevalence: 20%, 95% confidence interval = 11-33%) showed evidence of contact with leptospires, eight through direct detection and nine through serology (7 wolves were positive according to both techniques). Titres below the cut-off level were also detected in seven cases. Serovars confirmed were Canicola (n = 4), Icterohaemorrhagiae (n = 3) and Sejroë, Ballum and Grippotyphosa (n = 1 each), indicating that wolves were infected with serovars for which dogs, rodents and ungulates, are the natural hosts and supporting the utility of the wolf and other large predators as environmental sentinels for pathogens.
Millán, Javier; García, Emilio J; Oleaga, Álvaro; López-Bao, José Vicente; Llaneza, Luis; Palacios, Vicente; Candela, Mónica G; Cevidanes, Aitor; Rodríguez, Alejandro; León-Vizcaíno, Luis
The Iberian wolf (Canis lupus) is the top predator in the Iberian environments in which it lives, feeding on a wide range of species, thus encountering a wide range of disease agents. Therefore, the wolf can serve as sentinel of environmental contamination with pathogens. We investigated the exposure of free-living wolves to 14 serovars of Leptospira interrogans sensu lato. Kidney samples from 49 wolves collected from 2010-2013 in northwestern Spain were analysed by culture, direct immunofluorescence and polymerase chain reaction. Tissue fluids were analysed for antibodies by a microscopic agglutination test. Ten wolves (observed prevalence: 20%, 95% confidence interval = 11-33%) showed evidence of contact with leptospires, eight through direct detection and nine through serology (7 wolves were positive according to both techniques). Titres below the cut-off level were also detected in seven cases. Serovars confirmed were Canicola (n = 4), Icterohaemorrhagiae (n = 3) and Sejroë, Ballum and Grippotyphosa (n = 1 each), indicating that wolves were infected with serovars for which dogs, rodents and ungulates, are the natural hosts and supporting the utility of the wolf and other large predators as environmental sentinels for pathogens. PMID:25494467
Uhart, Marcela M; Rago, M Virginia; Marull, Carolina A; Ferreyra, Hebe del Valle; Pereira, Javier A
Wild carnivores share a high percentage of parasites and viruses with closely related domestic carnivores. Because of increased overlap and potential contact with domestic species, we conducted a retrospective serosurvey for 11 common carnivore pathogens in 40 Geoffroy's cats (Leopardus geoffroyi) sampled between 2000 and 2008 within or near two protected areas in central Argentina (Lihué Calel National Park, La Pampa, and Campos del Tuyú National Park, Buenos Aires), as well as five domestic cats and 11 domestic dogs from catde ranches adjacent to Lihué Calel Park. Geoffroy's cats had detectable antibody to canine distemper virus (CDV), feline calicivirus (FCV), feline coronavirus, feline panleukopenia virus (FPV), Toxoplasma gondii, Leptospira interrogans (serovars Ictero/Icter and Ballum), and Dirofilaria immitis. None of the wild cats had antibodies to feline herpesvirus, feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), feline leukemia virus, or rabies virus. Domestic dogs had antibodies to CDV, canine adenovirus, canine herpesvirus, and canine parvovirus. Antibodies to FPV, FCV, FIV, and T. gondii were found in domestic cats. We provide the first data on exposure of free-ranging Geoffroy's cats to pathogens at two sites within the core area of the species distribution range, including the first report of antibodies to CDV in this species. We encourage continued monitoring for diseases in wild and domestic carnivores as well as preventive health care for domestic animals, particularly in park buffer zones where overlap is greatest.
Since 1970, periodic outbreaks of leptospirosis, caused by pathogenic spirochetes in the genus Leptospira, have caused morbidity and mortality of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) along the Pacific coast of North America. Yearly seasonal epizootics of varying magnitude occur between the ...
Background Leptospirosis is considered a re-emerging infectious disease caused by pathogenic spirochaetes of the genus Leptospira. Pathogenic leptospires have the ability to survive and disseminate to multiple organs after penetrating the host. Leptospires were shown to express surface proteins that interact with the extracellular matrix (ECM) and to plasminogen (PLG). This study examined the interaction of two putative leptospiral proteins with laminin, collagen Type I, collagen Type IV, cellular fibronectin, plasma fibronectin, PLG, factor H and C4bp. Results We show that two leptospiral proteins encoded by LIC11834 and LIC12253 genes interact with laminin in a dose - dependent and saturable mode, with dissociation equilibrium constants (KD) of 367.5 and 415.4 nM, respectively. These proteins were named Lsa33 and Lsa25 (Leptospiral surface adhesin) for LIC11834 and LIC12253, respectively. Metaperiodate - treated laminin reduced Lsa25 - laminin interaction, suggesting that sugar moieties of this ligand participate in this interaction. The Lsa33 is also PLG - binding receptor, with a KD of 23.53 nM, capable of generating plasmin in the presence of an activator. Although in a weak manner, both proteins interact with C4bp, a regulator of complement classical route. In silico analysis together with proteinase K and immunoflorescence data suggest that these proteins might be surface exposed. Moreover, the recombinant proteins partially inhibited leptospiral adherence to immobilized laminin and PLG. Conclusions We believe that these multifunctional proteins have the potential to participate in the interaction of leptospires to hosts by mediating adhesion and by helping the bacteria to escape the immune system and to overcome tissue barriers. To our knowledge, Lsa33 is the first leptospiral protein described to date with the capability of binding laminin, PLG and C4bp in vitro. PMID:22463075
Rezasoltani, Sama; Dabiri, Hossein; Khaki, Pejvak; Rostami Nejad, Mohammad; Karimnasab, Nasim; Modirrousta, Shiva
Background: Leptospirosis is recognized as a re-emerging infectious disease; therefore, understanding the epidemiology of the disease is vital for designing intervention programs and diminishing its transmission. Recently, Multilocus variable number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) is used for segregating and identifying Leptospira serovars. The method has potential application in investigating the molecular epidemiology of Leptospira. Objectives: The propose of this study was genomic identification of pathogenic Leptospires in Iran by MLVA. Materials and Methods: Leptospira serovars were obtained from National Reference Laboratory of Leptospira at Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute, Karaj, Iran. Serovars were cultured into the liquid EMJH medium and incubated at 28˚C for 7 days. DNA of serovars was extracted using the phenol-chloroform method. PCR was performed with 5 selected variable number tandem repeat analysis (VNTR) loci. The amplified products were analyzed by agarose gel electrophoresis. The size of the amplified products was estimated by 100 bp ladder and sequencing analysis. Results: The saprophytic serovar showed no amplified fragments. PCR products in all pathogenic serovars were observed. The 12 reference serovars used for the development of technique displayed distinct patterns. Conclusions: Results showed that MLVA technique with its range of polymorphism is a good marker for identification of pathogenic serovars. Some VNTR loci are more powerful than the other ones with regard to differentiation. Serovars from the same geographical area have more genetic similarity than same serovars from different places. MLVA is a suitable technique for epidemiological survey. PMID:26568805
Leptospirosis, a re-emerging disease of global importance caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp., is considered the world’s most widespread zoonotic disease. Rats serve as asymptomatic carriers of pathogenic Leptospira and are critical for disease spread. In such reservoir hosts, leptospires colonize ...
Paz-Soldán, S V; Dianderas, M T; Windsor, R S
An outbreak of abortions, stillbirths, mummified piglets and neonatal deaths in a pig herd in Arequipa, Peru is described. A total of 31 of 240 sows aborted between May and September 1988. When sera were examined 12 of 14 had very high titres of antibody to canicola PC125 and canicola Hond Utrecht, but there were also high titres of antibody to other leptospiral serovars. A detailed investigation was made and serovar canicola PC125 was isolated from the urine of four sows which had aborted and the kidney of one slaughter pig. Antibodies to various serovars of Leptospira were demonstrated in 11 of 17 sows which had aborted, two of six sows which had normal litters, nine of 18 boars, four of 39 slaughter pigs and four of 14 workers on the farm. The outbreak was brought under control by treatment and vaccination coupled with a thorough cleaning of the farm and control of the wild animal population. It is suggested that the infection was brought onto the farm by wild animals and that the disease is more common in Arequipa than was previously supposed.
Schulze, Marco H; Raschel, Heribert; Langen, Heinz-Jakob; Stich, August; Tappe, Dennis
Key Clinical Message The traditional concept of immediate antibiotic treatment in suspected leptospirosis seems to be especially important for patients up to day 4 of clinical illness. As immune mechanisms probably play a crucial role in advanced leptospirosis with presumed pulmonary hemorrhages, patients might benefit from corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive agents beside antibiotics. PMID:25614810
Oliveira, Thaís L; Bacelo, Kátia L; Schuch, Rodrigo A; Seixas, Fabiana K; Collares, Tiago; Rodrigues, Oscar ED; Vargas, Josimar; do Nascimento, Rafaella O; Dellagostin, Odir A; Hartwig, Daiane D
Immunisation with the C-terminal region of leptospiral immunoglobulin-like A protein (LigANI) has shown promising results against leptospirosis. We evaluated the humoral immune response and protection induced by LigANI associated with carboxyl multi-walled carbon nanotubes (COOH-MWCNTs), CpG oligodeoxynucleotides (CpG ODNs), or Alhydrogel. Animals immunised with CpG ODNs were unable to develop a humoral immune response, whereas immunisation with LigANI and COOH-MWCNTs produced a high level of IgG antibodies, similar to that with LigANI and Alhydrogel, but it was not protective. The use of carbon nanotubes as an adjuvant in subunit vaccines against leptospirosis is a novel approach for improving specific IgG production. PMID:27759768
Pinne, Marija; Haake, David A.
The agents of leptospirosis, a zoonosis with worldwide distribution, are pathogenic spirochetes belonging to the genus Leptospira. The leptospiral life cycle involves transmission via fresh water and colonization of the renal tubules of their reservoir hosts. Infection of accidental hosts, including humans, may result in life-threatening sequelae. Bacterial outer membrane proteins (OMPs), particularly those with surface-exposed regions, play crucial roles in pathogen virulence mechanisms and adaptation to environmental conditions, including those found in the mammalian host. Therefore, elucidation and characterization of the surface-exposed OMPs of Leptospira spp. is of great interest in the leptospirosis field. A thorough, multi-pronged approach for assessing surface exposure of leptospiral OMPs is essential. Herein, we present evidence for a sub-surface location for most or all of the major leptospiral lipoprotein, LipL32, based on surface immunofluorescence utilizing three different types of antibodies and four different permeabilization methods, as well as surface proteolysis of intact and lysed leptospires. We reevaluate prior evidence presented in support of LipL32 surface-exposure and present a novel perspective on a protein whose location has been misleading researchers, due in large part to its extraordinary abundance in leptospiral cells. PMID:23323152
Recent studies have revealed that bacterial protein methylation is a widespread post-translational modification that is required for virulence in selected pathogenic bacteria. In particular, altered methylation of outer membrane proteins has been shown to modulate the effectiveness of the host immu...
Palaniappan, Raghavan U M; Chang, Yung-Fu; Hassan, Fahad; McDonough, Sean P; Pough, Margaret; Barr, Stephen C; Simpson, Kenneth W; Mohammed, Hussni O; Shin, Sang; McDonough, Patrick; Zuerner, Richard L; Qu, Jiaxin; Roe, Bruce
The search for novel antigens suitable for improved vaccines and diagnostic reagents against leptospirosis led to the identification of LigA and LigB. LigA and LigB expression were not detectable at the translation level but were detectable at the transcription level in leptospires grown in vitro. Lig genes were present in pathogenic serovars of Leptospira, but not in non-pathogenic Leptospira biflexa. The conserved and variable regions of LigA and LigB (Con, VarA and VarB) were cloned, expressed and purified as GST-fusion proteins. Purified recombinant LigA and LigB were evaluated for their diagnostic potential in a kinetic ELISA (KELA) using sera from vaccinated and microscopic agglutination test (MAT)-positive dogs. Sera from vaccinated dogs showed reactivity to whole-cell antigens of leptospires but did not show reactivity in the KELA assay with recombinant antigens, suggesting a lack of antibodies to Lig proteins in the vaccinated animals. The diagnostic potential of recombinant Lig antigens in the KELA assay was evaluated by using 67 serum samples with MAT > or =1600, which showed reactivity of 76, 41 and 35% to rConA, rVarA and rVarB, respectively. These findings suggest that recombinant antigen to the conserved region of LigA and LigB can differentiate between vaccinated and naturally infected animals.
Topazio, Josué; Tonin, Alexandre A; Machado, Gustavo; Noll, Jessica C G; Ribeiro, André; Moura, Anderson B; Carmo, Guilherme M; Grosskopf, Hyolanda M; Martins, Jorge L R; Badke, Manoel R T; Stefani, Lenita M; Lopes, Leandro S; Da Silva, Aleksandro S
Leptospirosis is an infectious disease caused by the bacterium Leptospira spp. In goats, the productive impact of leptospirosis is not well known and totally unknown in Santa Catarina (SC), Brazil. This study aimed to investigate leptospirosis seroprevalence and its risk factors in goats in the west side of SC. A total of 654 blood samples were analyzed using the microscopic agglutination technique and 35.47% (232) of the animals were seropositives. Except for serogroup Autumnalis, positive samples for all other serogroups were found as follows: Sejroe (Hardjo, Wolffi), Grippotyphosa (Grippotyphosa), Canicola (Canicola), Icterohaemorrhagiae (Icterohaemorrhagiae, Copenhageni), Australis (Australis, Bratislava) and Pomona (Pomona). The contact among sheep and goats, and the addition of concentrate as food supplement were found to be risk factors for leptospirosis. Based on these results, we conclude that there is a high occurrence of anti-Leptospira antibodies in goats in the Western part of Santa Catarina State.
Farina, R; Cerri, D; Renzoni, G; Andreani, E; Mani, P; Ebani, V; Pedrini, A; Nuvoloni, R
To verify if Leptospira hardjo can colonize the male and female genital organs of sheep, 9 animals (6 non pregnant ewes and 3 mature rams) were infected with a strain of L. hardjobovis recently recovered from the kidneys of a seropositive ewe. Postinfection controls (bacteriologic, serologic, immunohistochemistry and electron microscopy) failed to disclose the presence of leptospires in the uterus and oviducts, testicles, epididymis, prostate and bulbourethral glands of animals used for the experiment and slaughtered from 37 to 242 postinfection days. All animals showed a renal localization of L. hardjobovis lasting for the entire period of the study (over 8 months). These results emphasize the important role of sheep as maintenance hosts of the serovar.
Assez, N; Mauriaucourt, P; Cuny, J; Goldstein, P; Wiel, E
Leptospirosis is an anthropozoonose, an animal disease transmissible to humans, caused by a spirochete of the genus Leptospira that lives mainly among rodents but also in wetlands. It occurs worldwide, particularly in Asia, Latin America and Africa. In Europe, the incidence is small (except in France and Great Britain, where its frequency has increased in recent years) but the frequency may be underestimated. Some areas overseas are particularly affected. In France, the potential epidemic of leptospirosis is subject to climatic variations, justifying a constant monitoring of the disease provided by the National Reference Centre (CNR) of leptospires. Transmission to humans primarily occurs through contact with environments contaminated by the urine of infected animals. The disease can affect the liver and kidneys (hepatonephritis) as cytolysis, cholestasis and renal failure associated with fever. A coagulopathy usually accompanies the clinical table. Its diagnosis is difficult because of the clinical polymorphism. Early diagnosis of leptospirosis allows effective medical care, improving patient outcomes. This is currently based on gene amplification (PCR) or serology positive by the microscopic agglutination test (MAT), which is the reference method. Its evolution is usually favorable with appropriate antibiotic treatment (aminopenicillin). However 5-10% of symptomatic patients have a severe multisystem defaillance. Nearly a century after the discovery of the causative agent, this zoonosis remains a public health problem, zoonosis priority in terms of virulence, its reporting is mandatory in our country. We report the case of a severe form of hepatonephritis due to water contaminated with Leptospira observed in Northern France.
Pearce, Jacqueline W; Galle, Laurence E; Kleiboeker, Steve B; Turk, James R; Schommer, Susan K; Dubielizig, Richard R; Mitchell, William J; Moore, Cecil P; Giuliano, Elizabeth A
Equine recurrent uveitis (ERU) is the most frequent cause of blindness in horses worldwide. Leptospira has been implicated as an etiologic agent in some cases of ERU and has been detected in fresh ocular tissues of affected horses. The objective of this study was to determine the presence of Leptospira antigen and DNA in fixed equine ocular tissues affected with end-stage ERU. Sections of eyes from 30 horses were obtained. Controls included 1) 10 normal equine eyes and 2) 10 equine eyes with a nonrecurrent form of uveitis. The experimental group consisted of 10 eyes diagnosed with ERU based on clinical signs and histologic lesions. Sections were subjected to immunohistochemical staining with an array of rabbit anti-Leptospira polyclonal antibodies. DNA extractions were performed by using a commercial kit designed for fixed tissue. Real-time PCR analysis was completed on extracted DNA. The target sequence for PCR was designed from alignments of available Leptospira 16S rDNA partial sequences obtained from GenBank. Two of 10 test samples were positive for Leptospira antigen by immunohistochemical assay. Zero of 20 controls were positive for Leptospira antigen. All test samples and controls were negative for Leptospira DNA by real-time PCR analysis. Leptospira was detected at a lower frequency than that previously reported for fresh ERU-affected aqueous humor and vitreous samples. Leptospira is not frequently detectable in fixed ocular tissues of horses affected with ERU when using traditional immunohistochemical and real-time PCR techniques.
A total of 474 serum samples from client owned Irish dogs were tested for the presence of antibodies against serovars Canicola, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Bratislava, Autumnalis, Pomona, Altodouro, Grippotyphosa, Mozdok, Hardjobovis and Ballum. Six percent of dogs presented to veterinary practitioners for...
Schuller, S; Arent, Z J; Gilmore, C; Nally, J
A total of 474 serum samples from client owned Irish dogs were tested for the presence of antibodies to serovars Canicola, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Bratislava, Autumnalis, Pomona, Altodouro, Grippotyphosa, Mozdok, Hardjobovis and Ballum. Six per cent of dogs presented to veterinary practitioners for problems unrelated to leptospirosis showed evidence of prior exposure to leptospiral serovars belonging to the serogropus Ballum, Australis, Pomona and Sejroe. One unvaccinated dog suspected to have leptospirosis showed seroconversion to serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae. Based on these results the authors conclude that canine exposure to serogroup Ballum should be monitored because dogs may serve as sentinels for this serovar in the environment. Vaccination with multivalent vaccines containing serovar Bratislava in addition to serogroups Icterohaemorrhagiae and Canicola is advisable.
A comparative analysis of the Leptospira interrogans S10-spc-alpha operon was performed by PCR using primer sets covering the whole operon. Correctly sized fragments were obtained by PCR from all of L. interrogans strains for each primer set indicating that the S10-spc-alpha locus is well conserved ...
Serological studies on British isolates of the Sejroe serogroup of leptospira. II. An evaluation of the factor analysis method of identifying leptospires using strains belonging to the Sejroe serogroup.
Little, T. W.; Stevens, A. E.; Hathaway, S. C.
Twelve British isolates of leptospira belonging to the Sejroe serogroup were examined using a series of six factor sera prepared by a number of different absorption methods. Ten of the isolates were identified as Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo and two as L. interrogans serovar saxkoebing. These isolates had previously been identified using the cross agglutination absorption method. PMID:3609168
Benkirane, A; Noury, S; Hartskeerl, R A; Goris, M G A; Ahmed, A; Nally, J E
Leptospirosis is a neglected zoonosis of global importance with a complex epidemiology that affects humans, domestic and wild mammals. However, due to the diversity of clinical signs and difficulties of establishing a confirmatory laboratory diagnosis, the disease remains poorly investigated, particularly in the developing world. In Morocco, a descriptive study of the seroprevalence of Leptospira infection in animals has never been undertaken. To fill this gap, the current study was conducted on a subset of animals in north-west Morocco as a preliminary step towards understanding the epidemiological patterns of animal leptospirosis in the country. The study was conducted on 289 serum samples collected between January and April 2012 from dogs, cattle, sheep, goats and donkeys in the areas of Rabat-Temara, Sidi Kacem and Oulmes. All serum samples were tested by the MAT with 14 reference strains of the most prevalent pathogenic serovars of Leptospira and two serovars of non-pathogenic Leptospira. The overall seroprevalence of Leptospira in cattle, sheep, goats, dogs and donkeys was 15%, 18%, 20%, 21% and 20%, respectively. The most prevalent serogroups found in each species were Ballum, Sejroe, and Australis in cattle, Ballum, Australis and Sejroe in sheep, Australis and Ballum in goats, Javanica and Australis in donkey and Australis, Ballum and Canicola in dogs. Of all the serogroups tested in this study, Icterohaemorrhagiae, the only serogroup which has been previously reported in humans in Morocco, was rarely reactive. The majority of reactive sera were collected from low land areas. A large number of sera samples classified as seronegative when tested against pathogenic leptospires were positive when tested against non-pathogenic leptospires; this is suggestive of possible novel, as yet unclassified, Leptospira serovars in Morocco. Eleven of thirteen sheep urine samples were positive by real-time PCR confirming their role as Leptospira carriers in Morocco.
Lévesque, B; De Serres, G; Higgins, R; D'Halewyn, M A; Artsob, H; Grondin, J; Major, M; Garvie, M; Duval, B
This study was undertaken to evaluate the prevalence of antibodies against Francisella tularensis, Coxiella burnetii, and certain serovars of Leptospira interrogans among trappers in Québec, Canada. Muskrat trapping was identified as a risk factor for F. tularensis infection, whereas having a cat at home apparently protected trappers against infection by L. interrogans. High percentages of control sera were positive for antibodies against C. burnetii (15%) and L. interrogans (5%), most frequently serovar bratislava. This is the first report of human infection by serovar bratislava in North America. PMID:7583933
We are characterizing protein expression in vivo during experimental leptospirosis using immunofluorescence microscopy. Coding regions for several proteins were identified through analysis of Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni and L. borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo genomes. In addition, codi...
Stamm, L V; Charon, N W
The habitats for the two major Leptospira spp. differ. The main habitat of L. biflexa is soil and water, whereas L. interrogans primarily resides in the renal tubules of animals. We investigated whether these two species, along with L. illini (species incertae sedis), differ with respect to their sensitivity to UV radiation. The doses of UV resulting in 37, 10, and 1% survival were determined for representative serovars from each species. L. interrogans serovar pomona was 3.0 to 4.8 times more sensitive to UV than the other Leptospira species under the 37, 10, and 1% survival parameters. In comparison to other bacteria, L. interrogans serovar pomona is among the most sensitive to UV. In a qualitative UV sensitivity assay, L. interrogans serovars were found to be in general more sensitive than L. biflexa serovars. All three species were found to have a photoreactivation DNA repair mechanism. Since organisms that are resistant to UV are often resistant to the DNA cross-linking agent mitomycin C, we tested the relative sensitivity of several Leptospira serovars to this compound. With few exceptions, L. biflexa and L. illini serovars were considerably more resistant to mitomycin C than the L. interrogans serovars. The mitomycin C sensitivity assay could be a useful addition to current characterization tests used to differentiate the Leptospira species. PMID:3132098
Vado-Solis, Ignacio; Pérez-Osorio, Carlos; Peniche-Lara, Gaspar; Segura-Correa, José
Introduction: Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease affecting mainly to low income human population. Acute leptospiral infection during pregnancy has been associated with spontaneous abortion and fetal death during the first trimester and the abortion may occur as consequence of systemic failure. Objective: To estimate the frequency of Leptospira interrogans infection in women with spontaneous abortion in the state of Yucatan, Mexico. Methods: A cross sectional study on women with spontaneous abortion was conducted. Serum samples were tested for Leptospirosis by the microaglutination test, to estimate the frequency of the infecting serovar. The indirect ELISA IgM was used to detect recent infection by L. interrogans. DNA was extracted from paraffin-embedded tissue of placenta for PCR detection of L. interrogans. Results: Overall frequency of infection with L. interrogans in the 81 women with abortion was 13.6%. Five of the 12 serovars evaluated were found and included. Two of the 11 women with abortion and positive to microaglutination test were also positive to the ELISA IgM test. None samples were positive for PCR Leptospira diagnosis. Conclusion: two women could be associated with spontaneous abortion due to leptospirosis, because they showed antibodies against L. interrogans in the microaglutination test and ELISA IgM assays. Differences between regions were found with respect to the prevalences of lesptospirosis. PMID:27226658
Stamm, L.V.; Charon, N.W.
The habitats for the two major Leptospira spp. differ. The main habitat of L. biflexa is soil and water, whereas L. interrogans primarily resides in the renal tubules of animals. We investigated whether these two species, along with L. illini (species incertae sedis), differ with respect to their sensitivity to UV radiation. The doses of UV resulting in 37, 10 and 1% survival were determined for representive serovars from each species. L. interrogans serovar pomona was 3.0 to 4.8 times more sensitive to UV than the other Leptospira species under the 37, 10, and 1% survival parameters. In comparison to other bacteria, L. interrogans serovar pomona is among the most sensitive to UV. In a qualitative UV sensitivity assay., L. interrogans serovars were found to be in general more sensitive than L. biflexa serovars. All three species were found to have a photoreactivation DNA repair mechanism. Since organisms that are resistant to UV are often resistant to the DNA cross-linking agent mitomycin C, we tested the relative sensitivity of several Leptospira serovars to this compound. With few exceptions, L. biflexa and L. illini serovars were considerably more resistant to mitomycin C than the L. interrogans serovars. The mitomycin C sensitivity assay could be a useful addition to current characterization tests used to differentiate the Leptospira species.
Di Francesco, Cristina Esmeralda; Gentile, Leonardo; Di Pirro, Vincenza; Ladiana, Lara; Tagliabue, Silvia; Marsilio, Fulvio
We tested 30 serum samples collected during 2004-09 from 22 free-ranging Marsican brown bears (Ursus arctos marsicanus) in the National Park of Abruzzo, Lazio, and Molise, Italy, for antibodies against canine distemper virus (CDV), canine adenovirus type 2 (CAV-2), canine parvovirus type 2 (CPV-2), Brucella spp., and eight Leptospira interrogans sensu lato serovars. Antibody to CDV was detected in 11 samples (37%); only two bears (10%) had detectable CAV-2 and Brucella spp. antibodies; three bears were positive for L. interrogans serovar Bratislava; and one sample had antibody against L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni. All samples were positive for CPV-2 antibody. The CPV-2 antibody titers varied from 1∶640 to 1∶10,240, suggesting that transmission was still active. Fifty percent of bears were positive for antibody to two or more pathogens. Our results highlight the need to consider infectious diseases as a potential risk for Marsican brown bear conservation.
Malmlov, Ashley; Breck, Stewart; Fry, Tricia; Duncan, Colleen
Abstract As coyotes (Canis latrans) adapt to living in urban environments, the opportunity for cross-species transmission of pathogens may increase. We investigated the prevalence of antibodies to pathogens that are either zoonotic or affect multiple animal species in urban coyotes in the Denver metropolitan area, Colorado, USA, in 2012. We assayed for antibodies to canine parvovirus-2, canine distemper virus, rabies virus, Toxoplasma gondii, Yersinia pestis, and serotypes of Leptospira interrogans. Overall, 84% of the animals had antibodies to canine parvovirus-2, 44% for canine distemper virus, 20% for T. gondii (IgG), 28% for Y. pestis, and 4% for L. interrogans serotype Grippotyphosa. No neutralizing antibodies were detected to rabies virus, T. gondii (IgM), or L. interrogans serotypes other than Grippotyphosa. With 88% of animals exposed to at least one pathogen, our results suggest that coyotes may serve as important reservoirs and sentinels for etiologic agents.
Dorrego-Keiter, Elisa; Tóth, József; Dikker, Lieke; Sielhorst, Jutta; Schusser, Gerald Fritz
In the ongoing discussion regarding the aetiopathogenesis of equine recurrent uveitis (ERU) it was the aim of the present study to elucidate the relationship of leptospira infection and ERU. In a population of 225 horses leptospira were examined in vitreous humor by culture and leptospira antibody were detected in vitreous humor and serum samples. Preoperative serum samples were collected from 221/225 ERU patients of different age, gender and breed. Undiluted vitreous humor was aseptically taken from 198/225 patients that underwent pars plana vitrectomy at the beginning of surgery and from 27/225 patients' eyeball after enucleation: Serum and vitreous humor were tested for specific leptospiral antibodies by microscopic agglutination test (MAT). Furthermore, vitreous humor was examined by culture. 20 patients which were euthanized due to a live-threatening disease other than ERU served as a control group. A total of 127/221 (57.5%) horses had serum antibodies (≥ 1:100). Most frequently antibodies against L. interrogans serovar Grippotyphosa were detected (79/127), followed by L. interrogans serovar lcterohaemorrhagiae (34/127) and L. interrogans serovar Bratislava (29/127). Only 79/225 horses (35.1%) had leptospiral antibodies in vitreous humor, in which L. interrogans serovar Grippotyphosa (67/79) was identified most frequently followed by L. interrogans serovar Pomona (18/79) and L. interrogans serovar lcterohaemorrhagiae (8/79) which was identified as single or multiple reaction. Isolation of leptospira from vitreous humor was positive in 34/212 horses (16%). 10/20 control horses had a positive antibody titer against leptospira in serum and 2/20 horses in vitreous humor, whereas there was no leptospira detected in culture. The result of 84% negative cultures from vitreous humor of 212 ERU patients is decisive for the diagnosis and therapy of ERU.
Little, T. W.; Stevens, A. E.; Hathaway, S. C.
Some 94 strains of leptospires belonging to the Sejroe serogroup isolated in the British Isles were identified to the serovar level using specific factor sera. Seventy strains were identified as Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo, 66 from cattle, 2 from pigs and 1 each from a sheep foetus and a human. Twenty-four strains were identified as L. interrogans serovar saxkoebing, most strains were isolated from either wood mice, bank or field voles but strains were also isolated from badgers, a fox and a dog. PMID:3609169
Matsunaga, James; Artiushin, Sergey; Pinne, Marija; Houwers, Dirk J.; Haake, David A.; Stevenson, Brian; Timoney, John F.
Screening of an expression library of Leptospira interrogans with eye fluids from uveitic horses resulted in identification of a novel protein, LruC. LruC is located in the inner leaflet of the leptospiral outer membrane, and an lruC gene was detected in all tested pathogenic L. interrogans strains. LruC-specific antibody levels were significantly higher in eye fluids and sera of uveitic horses than healthy horses. These findings suggest that LruC may play a role in equine leptospiral uveitis. PMID:22237897
... replace animal use for vaccine potency testing (Stokes et al., 2011). The USDA has developed and validated... Alternatives to Animal Testing (EURL ECVAM), the Japanese Center for the Validation of Alternative Methods, the... Potency Testing of Leptospira interrogans Serovar pomona Bacterins. Washington, DC:USDA Animal and...
Barragan, Veronica; Sahl, Jason W.; Wiggins, Kristin; Chiriboga, Jorge; Salinas, Ana; Cantos, Nancy E.; Loor, Mariana N.; Intriago, Bertha I.; Morales, Melba; Trueba, Gabriel
Pathogenic Leptospira spp. cause leptospirosis upon contact with mucosa through wounds or ingestion, leading to headaches, fever, jaundice, kidney or liver failure, or death in about 1.3 million people each year. Here, we present the draft genomes of one L. santarosai isolate and two L. interrogans isolates from Ecuador. PMID:27151788
Barragan, Veronica; Sahl, Jason W; Wiggins, Kristin; Chiriboga, Jorge; Salinas, Ana; Cantos, Nancy E; Loor, Mariana N; Intriago, Bertha I; Morales, Melba; Trueba, Gabriel; Pearson, Talima
Pathogenic Leptospira spp. cause leptospirosis upon contact with mucosa through wounds or ingestion, leading to headaches, fever, jaundice, kidney or liver failure, or death in about 1.3 million people each year. Here, we present the draft genomes of one L. santarosai isolate and two L. interrogans isolates from Ecuador.
We would like to express several concerns regarding the article “Efficacy of vaccination of cattle with the Leptospira interrogans serovar Hardjo type hardjoprajitno component of a pentavalent Leptospira bacterin against experimental challenge with Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo type hardj...
The Code for Federal Regulations (9 CFR 113:101-104) specifies how vaccine potency is evaluated in a hamster model for evaluation of leptospiral vaccines against pomona, icterohaemorrhagiae, canicola, and grippotyphosa serotypes of Leptospira interrogans. There are several issues which complicate th...
Grune Loffler, Sylvia; Passaro, Diego; Samartino, Luis; Soncini, Analía; Romero, Graciela; Brihuega, Bibiana
Leptospirosis is an infectious disease of wide global distribution, which is endemic in Argentina. The objective of this study was to obtain the genetic profiles of Leptospira spp. strains isolated from clinical cases of dogs in the province of Buenos Aires by the multiple-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA). Eight isolated canine strains were genotyped by MLVA, obtaining the identical profile of Leptospira interrogans serovar Canicola Hond Utrecht IV in the strains named Dogy and Mayo. The strains named Bel, Sarmiento, La Plata 4581 and La Plata 5478 were identical to the profile of the genotype of L. interrogans serovar Portlandvere MY 1039.The strain named Avellaneda was identical to the genotype profile of L. interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae RGA and the strain named SB had the same profile as the L. interrogans serovar Pomona Baires genotype and was similar to the profile of serovar Pomona Pomona genotype. It would be useful to include a larger number of isolates from different dog populations in various provinces of Argentina and to characterize the genetic profiles of the strains circulating in the country. The information obtained will be useful for the control of leptospirosis in the dog population.
Kalin, M; Devaux, C; DiFruscia, R; Lemay, S; Higgins, R
Three dogs from different locations with acute renal failure were hospitalized in autumn 1996 and 1997. Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona was detected by the microscopic agglutination test. All dogs recovered after antibiotic treatment. The importance of the development of vaccines adapted to emerging serovars in dogs should be addressed. PMID:10086220
Mikaelian, I; Higgins, R; Lequient, M; Major, M; Lefebvre, F; Martineau, D
Raccoons may represent a source of leptospires for humans and domestic animals. We describe a case of severe interstitial nephritis associated with the serovar bratislava of Leptospira interrogans (1st report in wildlife), and the seroprevalence to 4 leptospire serovars in a recreational area in Quebec. Images Figure 1. p442-a PMID:9220134
Theodose, Rafaelle; Olive, Claude; Bourhy, Pascale; Hurtrel, Guillaume; Vignier, Nicolas; Mehdaoui, Hossein; Valentino, Ruddy; Martinez, Roland; Delord, Jean-Marie; Herrmann, Cécile; Lamaury, Isabelle; Césaire, Raymond; Picardeau, Mathieu; Cabié, André
To identify factors associated with disease severity, we examined 102 patients with quantitative PCR–confirmed leptospirosis in Martinique during 2010–2013. Associated factors were hypotension, chest auscultation abnormalities, icterus, oligo/anuria, thrombocytopenia, prothrombin time <68%, high levels of leptospiremia, and infection with L. interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae/Copenhageni. PMID:26583702
Sebek, Z; Blazek, K; Valová, M; Amin, A
The authors examined serologically 329 specimens of domestic animals from 8 provinces of Afghanistan for the incidence of leptospirosis. They detected in 15.8% of the animals examined antibodies against Leptospira in titres of 1 : 800 and higher: in 6.4% with serotypes of the serogroup Hebdomadis, 5.5%--Tarassovi, 2.7%--Grippotyphosa, 2.4%--Pomona, 2.1% Javanica, 1.5%--Icterohaemorrhagiae, 0.6% each--Canicola, Ballum, Bataviae, 0.3%--Pyrogenes. Positivity was highest in the buffalo--55.0%, camel--10 of the 18 animals examined, and cattle--25.5%. It was considerably lower in sheep--2.3% and goat--3.2%; also positive was one of the 6 zebus examined.
Zamora, J; Riedemann, S; Tadich, N
In order to investigate exposure to Leptospira spp. in sheep in the Xth Region in the south of Chile, 629 ovine serum samples were collected from 11 convenience selected sheep farms, using within farm random sampling. The sera collected were examined for antibodies to the following serovars; icterohaemorrhagiae, autumnalis, hardjo, pomona, ballum, and canicola, using the Microscopic Agglutination Test. Ten out of eleven flocks had sheep which were seropositive for at least one Leptospira spp. Positive tests, the majority at low titres, were obtained from 36/629 (5.7%) of all the serum samples tested. The most frequently detected serovars were, in descending order: icterohaemorrhagiae, autumnalis and hardjo. The greatest proportion of positive samples came from sheep which were over 30 months old.
Vanithamani, Shanmugam; Shanmughapriya, Santhanam; Narayanan, Ramasamy; Raja, Veerapandian; Kanagavel, Murugesan; Sivasankari, Karikalacholan; Natarajaseenivasan, Kalimuthusamy
Background Leptospirosis is a re-emerging infectious disease that is under-recognized due to low-sensitivity and cumbersome serological tests. MAT is the gold standard test and it is the only serogroup specific test used till date. Rapid reliable alternative serogroup specific tests are needed for surveillance studies to identify locally circulating serogroups in the study area. Methods/Principal Findings In the present investigation the serological specificity of leptospiral lipopolysaccharides (LPS) was evaluated by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), dot blot assay and rapid immunochromatography based lateral flow assay (ICG-LFA). Sera samples from 120 MAT positive cases, 174 cases with febrile illness other than leptospirosis, and 121 seronegative healthy controls were evaluated for the diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of the developed assays. LPS was extracted from five locally predominant circulating serogroups including: Australis (27.5%), Autumnalis (11.7%), Ballum (25.8%), Grippotyphosa (12.5%), Pomona (10%) and were used as antigens in the diagnostics to detect IgM antibodies in patients’ sera. The sensitivity observed by IgM ELISA and dot blot assay using various leptospiral LPS was >90% for homologous sera. Except for Ballum LPS, no other LPS showed cross-reactivity to heterologous sera. An attempt was made to develop LPS based ICG-LFA for rapid and sensitive serogroup specific diagnostics of leptospirosis. The developed ICG-LFA showed sensitivity in the range between 93 and 100% for homologous sera. The Wilcoxon analysis showed LPS based ICG-LFA did not differ significantly from the gold standard MAT (P>0.05). Conclusion The application of single array of LPS for serogroup specific diagnosis is first of its kind. The developed assay could potentially be evaluated and employed for as MAT alternative. PMID:26340095
Suepaul, Sharianne M; Carrington, Christine V; Campbell, Mervyn; Borde, Gustave; Adesiyun, Abiodun Adewale
A study was conducted to determine the seroprevalence of leptospirosis and infecting serovars across livestock (cattle, sheep, goats, and pigs) in Trinidad using the microscopic agglutination test with an international panel of 23 serovars. Of a total of 590 cattle tested, 21.5% were seropositive with agglutinations to 13 of the 23 antigens used in the panel. Icterohaemorrhagiae (9.3%), Sejroe (4.1%), Ballum (4.1%), and Autumnalis (1.9%) were the predominant serogroups detected in the cattle sampled (n = 590). Of 222 sheep tested, 5.0% were seropositive with agglutinations to five serovars belonging to two serogroups. These serogroups were Autumnalis at 2.7%, and Icterohaemorrhagiae at 2.3% of all sheep tested (n = 222). Of a total of 180 goats tested, 3.3% were seropositive, all agglutinating to the Icterohaemorrhagiae serogroup, 1.7% to serovar Copenhageni, 1.1% to serovar Mankarso, and 0.6% to serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae. Among pigs (n = 200), 5.0% were seropositive for five serovars belonging to three serogroups. These serogroups were Icterohaemorrhagiae at 2.5%, Australis at 2%, and Ballum at 0.5%. Overall, age and sex of animals were not significantly associated with leptospirosis with the exception of cattle where age was a significant factor for seropositivity. It was concluded that for livestock, leptospirosis may be an important zoonotic and economic disease, particularly in the case of cattle. It is imperative that the impact of leptospirosis on abortion, stillbirths, and decreased milk production in livestock in the country be assessed.
Leon, L L; Garcia, R C; Diaz, C O; Valdez, R B; Carmona, G C A; Velazquez, B L G
In order to know the seroprevalence of Leptospira spp. in stabled dairy cattle, a study was conducted from 2004 to 2006 in which 416 sera were tested using a microscopic agglutination test conducted on microplates. A collection of culture reference antigens, each representing a serogroup, was used for these tests. Results showed that 10.33% (43) of the animals had antibody titers ranging from 1:100 to 1:1600. The main serovars detected in these tests were L. interrogans serovar hardjo and L. interrogans serovar canicola. It is important to note that these serovars represent a high risk for transmission to other susceptible animal species, between individuals, and to human health. This serological survey provides useful information establishing the presence or absence of these serovars in this type of herd. The range of antigens used in this study included serovars representative of all common serogroups.
Alt, David P; Wilson-Welder, Jennifer
Evaluation of leptospiral vaccines for potency against Leptospira interrogans serovars Pomona, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Canicola, and Grippotyphosa is accomplished using the hamster potency test method described in 9 CFR 113.101-104. Applicability of this method to evaluation of bacterins developed for immunization against infection with L. interrogans serovar Hardjo or Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo is complicated by several issues. Information from research on target host animal efficacy studies and evaluation of the immune response elicited using effective whole-cell bacterin formulations have revealed problems in relating these studies to either hamster-based or other potency testing methods. Future work on serovar Hardjo vaccines employing recombinant proteins will require preliminary testing methods in models other than the host animal. These models may also prove applicable to evaluation of potency for protein-based vaccines. Both an acute lethal infection model and a chronic infection model have been developed using two different strains of serovar Hardjo and will be described.
Felt, Stephen A; Wasfy, Momtaz O; El-Tras, Wael F; Samir, Ahmed; Rahaman, Bassem Abdel; Boshra, Marie; Parker, Tina M; Hatem, Mahmoud Essam; El-Bassiouny, Ahmed Ahmed; Murray, Clinton K; Pimentel, Guillermo
A survey of 179 animals (black rats, dogs, sheep, buffaloes, cattle, donkeys, weasels, and cats) for Leptospira infection was conducted in Mahalla City (Lower Egypt). Blood, urine, and kidney were collected and tested by culture, microscopic agglutination test (MAT), and/or polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Among rats, 26% were positive by PCR, including 7% that were also positive by culture for L. interrogans serovars Grippotyphosa, Pyrogenes, and Icterohaemorrhagiae. L. borpetersenii serovar Polonica was isolated for the first time in Egypt in three rats. MAT titers ≥ 1:800 were observed in 11% of rats and 12% of dogs. L. interrogans serovar Grippotyphosa was detected in one cat. Sheep and donkeys were negative for leptospirosis by all methods. Buffaloes and cattle were seropositive in 20% and 44% of animals, respectively. Data indicate that several pathogenic serovars are circulating in the animals, which may pose exposure risks and account for high rates of acute febrile illness.
Ayral, F; Artois, J; Zilber, A-L; Widén, F; Pounder, K C; Aubert, D; Bicout, D J; Artois, M
Leptospira interrogans, hantaviruses (particularly Seoul virus), hepatitis E virus (HEV), and Toxoplasma gondii are rat-associated zoonoses that are responsible for human morbidity and mortality worldwide. This study aimed to describe the infection patterns of these four pathogens in wild rats (Rattus norvegicus) across socioeconomic levels in neighbourhoods in Lyon, France. The infection or exposure status was determined using polymerase chain reaction or serology for 178 wild rats captured in 23 locations; additionally, confirmatory culture or mouse inoculation was performed. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to investigate whether morphological and socioeconomic data could predict the infection status of the rats. This study revealed that the rat colony's age structure may influence the prevalence of L. interrogans, hantavirus, and HEV. In addition, areas with high human population densities and low incomes may be associated with a greater number of infected rats and an increased risk of disease transmission.
Cordonin, Colette; Le Minter, Gildas; Gomard, Yann; Pagès, Frédéric; Jaffar-Bandjee, Marie-Christine; Tortosa, Pablo; Dellagi, Koussay
Background Although leptospirosis is a zoonosis of major concern on tropical islands, the molecular epidemiology of the disease aiming at linking human cases to specific animal reservoirs has been rarely explored within these peculiar ecosystems. Methodology/Principal Findings Five species of wild small mammals (n = 995) as well as domestic animals (n = 101) were screened for Leptospira infection on Reunion Island; positive samples were subsequently genotyped and compared to Leptospira from clinical cases diagnosed in 2012–2013 (n = 66), using MLST analysis. We identified two pathogenic species in human cases, namely Leptospira interrogans and Leptospira borgpetersenii. Leptospira interrogans was by far dominant both in clinical samples (96.6%) and in infected animal samples (95.8%), with Rattus spp and dogs being its exclusive carriers. The genetic diversity within L. interrogans was apparently limited to two sequence types (STs): ST02, identified among most clinical samples and in all rats with complete MLST, and ST34, identified in six humans, but not in rats. Noteworthy, L. interrogans detected in two stray dogs partially matched with ST02 and ST34. Leptospira borgpetersenii was identified in two clinical samples only (3.4%), as well as in cows and mice; four haplotypes were identified, of which two seemingly identical in clinical and animal samples. Leptospira borgpetersenii haplotypes detected in human cases were clearly distinct from the lineage detected so far in the endemic bat species Mormopterus francoismoutoui, thus excluding a role for this volant mammal in the local human epidemiology of the disease. Conclusions/Significance Our data confirm rats as a major reservoir of Leptospira on Reunion Island, but also pinpoint a possible role of dogs, cows and mice in the local epidemiology of human leptospirosis. This study shows that a comprehensive molecular characterization of pathogenic Leptospira in both clinical and animal samples helps to gaining
anti-mycoplasmal antibodies were negative, but a late convalescent serum was positive for anti- leptospiral antibodies (L. interrogans, serovar...rainwater catchment systems – all of which are known risk factors for leptospirosis2 ,3 . The leptospiral serovar bratislava, identified in two of the...each summer until the end of World War II. In 1951, using archived patient sera, the leptospiral etiology of “Fort Bragg fever” was finally elucidated
Villanueva, Sharon Y A M; Saito, Mitsumasa; Tsutsumi, Yutaka; Segawa, Takaya; Baterna, Rubelia A; Chakraborty, Antara; Asoh, Tatsuma; Miyahara, Satoshi; Yanagihara, Yasutake; Cavinta, Lolita L; Gloriani, Nina G; Yoshida, Shin-ichi
Leptospirosis is caused by pathogenic species of Leptospira. The aim of this study was to determine and characterize the pathogenicity of four dominant Leptospira isolates prevailing among rats in the Philippines. The isolates were Leptospira interrogans serovar Manilae strain K64, L. interrogans serovar Losbanos strain K37, L. interrogans serovar Ratnapura strain K5 and Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Javanica strain K6. Pathogenicities were studied using hamsters, which reproduce severe human leptospirosis. The minimum lethal doses were 10(0) ( = 1) leptospires for K64, K37 and K5, and 10(1) leptospires for K6. Weight loss amongst the Leptospira-infected hamsters was observed from 1 day before death (K64-, K37- and K5-infected hamsters) to as much as 1 week before death for K6-infected hamsters. Similar and varied gross and microscopic lesions were observed amongst infected hamsters, even for strains belonging to the same species (i.e. L. interrogans). The most significant and common histopathological findings were congestion of the glomerulus, disarrangement of hepatic cords and erythrophagocytosis. Other findings were foamy splenic macrophages for K6, severe petechial pulmonary haemorrhage for K64, and hematuria and severe pulmonary congestion for K37. Immunostaining and culture revealed the presence of leptospires in different organs of the infected hamsters. Based on these results, Leptospira isolates from rats in the Philippines were shown to be highly virulent, causing pulmonary haemorrhage, severe hepato-renal damage and death in hamsters even at lower doses. The present findings on experimental leptospirosis support clinical data showing that patients with severe manifestations of leptospirosis, such as pulmonary haemorrhage, are increasing in the Philippines. These findings may serve as a basis to strengthen the early diagnosis and treatment of human leptospirosis.
Mielcarek, Mathilde; Tatard, Caroline; Chaval, Yannick; Suputtamongkol, Yupin; Buchy, Philippe; Jittapalapong, Sathaporn; Herbreteau, Vincent; Morand, Serge
Background Leptospirosis is the most common bacterial zoonoses and has been identified as an important emerging global public health problem in Southeast Asia. Rodents are important reservoirs for human leptospirosis, but epidemiological data is lacking. Methodology/Principal Findings We sampled rodents living in different habitats from seven localities distributed across Southeast Asia (Thailand, Lao PDR and Cambodia), between 2009 to 2010. Human isolates were also obtained from localities close to where rodents were sampled. The prevalence of Leptospira infection was assessed by real-time PCR using DNA extracted from rodent kidneys, targeting the lipL32 gene. Sequencing rrs and secY genes, and Multi Locus Variable-number Tandem Repeat (VNTR) analyses were performed on DNA extracted from rat kidneys for Leptospira isolates molecular typing. Four species were detected in rodents, L. borgpetersenii (56% of positive samples), L. interrogans (36%), L. kirschneri (3%) and L. weilli (2%), which were identical to human isolates. Mean prevalence in rodents was approximately 7%, and largely varied across localities and habitats, but not between rodent species. The two most abundant Leptospira species displayed different habitat requirements: L. interrogans was linked to humid habitats (rice fields and forests) while L. borgpetersenii was abundant in both humid and dry habitats (non-floodable lands). Conclusion/Significance L. interrogans and L. borgpetersenii species are widely distributed amongst rodent populations, and strain typing confirmed rodents as reservoirs for human leptospirosis. Differences in habitat requirements for L. interrogans and L. borgpetersenii supported differential transmission modes. In Southeast Asia, human infection risk is not only restricted to activities taking place in wetlands and rice fields as is commonly accepted, but should also include tasks such as forestry work, as well as the hunting and preparation of rodents for consumption, which
Background Leptospiral infections in poikilothermic (cold blooded) animals have received very little attention and the literature concerning natural infections of these animals is limited. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of leptospiral antibodies in reptiles, imported into Slovenia and intended to be pets in close contact with humans. A total of 297 reptiles (22 snakes, 210 lizards and 65 turtles) were tested for specific antibodies against serovars of Leptospira interrogans sensu stricto using the microscopic agglutination test (MAT). Live cultures of different serovars were used as antigens. MAT was performed according to standard procedures and the degree of reaction was interpreted by estimating the percentage of agglutinated leptospires. Samples showing titres of ≥ 50 against one or more serovars were considered as positive. Results Antibodies against seven pathogenic serovars of L. interrogans sensu stricto were detected in 46 of 297 reptiles. Among 22 snakes, specific antibodies against pathogenic serovars of three Leptospira species (L. interrogans, L. kirschneri and L. borgpetersenii) at titre levels from 1:50 to 1:400 were detected in 6 snakes. In 31 of 210 lizards, specific antibodies were found in titres from 1:50 to 1:1000 and, finally, among 65 turtles (terrapins and tortoises), 9 had specific antibodies at titre levels between 1:50 and 1:1600. Animals imported from non-EU countries showed significantly higher prevalence (25.0%; 95 confidence interval: 16.7–33.3%) than animals from EU member states (10.4%; confidence interval: 6.1–14.7%). Conclusions Reptiles may be considered as potential reservoirs of L. interrogans sensu stricto. Origin of the animals is a risk factor for presence of leptospiral antibodies, especially in lizards. Special attention should be focused on animals from non-EU member states. PMID:24020619
22] and Mycobacterium leprae , and secondly more closely related pathogenic genomes of Leptospira interrogans serovars Lai  and Leptospira... Mycobacterium leprae : a minimal mycobacterial gene set. Genome biology 2001, 2(8):REVIEWS1023. 24. Ren SX, Fu G, Jiang XG, Zeng R, Miao YG, Xu H...operons. Basic evaluation was performed by aligning two pairs of genomes, first relatively distant genomes of Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37Rv [21
Zuerner, Richard L.; Ahmed, Niyaz; Bulach, Dieter M.; Quinteiro, Javier; Hartskeerl, Rudy A.
S10-spc-α is a 17.5 kb cluster of 32 genes encoding ribosomal proteins. This locus has an unusual composition and organization in Leptospira interrogans. We demonstrate the highly conserved nature of this region among diverse Leptospira and show its utility as a phylogenetically informative region. Comparative analyses were performed by PCR using primer sets covering the whole locus. Correctly sized fragments were obtained by PCR from all L. interrogans strains tested for each primer set indicating that this locus is well conserved in this species. Few differences were detected in amplification profiles between different pathogenic species, indicating that the S10-spc-α locus is conserved among pathogenic Leptospira. In contrast, PCR analysis of this locus using DNA from saprophytic Leptospira species and species with an intermediate pathogenic capacity generated varied results. Sequence alignment of the S10-spc-α locus from two pathogenic species, L. interrogans and L. borgpetersenii, with the corresponding locus from the saprophyte L. biflexa serovar Patoc showed that genetic organization of this locus is well conserved within Leptospira. Multilocus sequence typing (MLST) of four conserved regions resulted in the construction of well-defined phylogenetic trees that help resolve questions about the interrelationships of pathogenic Leptospira. Based on the results of secY sequence analysis, we found that reliable species identification of pathogenic Leptospira is possible by comparative analysis of a 245 bp region commonly used as a target for diagnostic PCR for leptospirosis. Comparative analysis of Leptospira strains revealed that strain H6 previously classified as L. inadai actually belongs to the pathogenic species L. interrogans and that L. meyeri strain ICF phylogenetically co-localized with the pathogenic clusters. These findings demonstrate that the S10-spc-α locus is highly conserved throughout the genus and may be more useful in comparing evolution of
Junge, Randall E; Bauman, Karen; King, Melanie; Gompper, Matthew E
In urban environments, raccoons (Procyon lotor) may act as reservoirs for an array of pathogenic organisms, presenting spillover risks for human, domestic animal, and captive (zoo) animal populations. Over 5 yr, 159 raccoons from a high-density raccoon population in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), were surveyed for exposure to canine distemper virus (CDV), canine adenovirus 1 (CAV-1); feline parvovirus (FPV; =feline panleukopenia), and several serovars of Leptospira interrogans. Exposure to each of the viruses and two Leptospira serovars (grippotyphosa and icterohemorrhagiae) was detected (prevalence of CDV = 54.1%; FPV = 49.7%; CAV-1 = 6.9%; L. interrogans icterohemorrhagiae = 8.9%; L. interrogans grippotyphosa = 6.3%). Eighty percent of raccoons showed evidence of exposure to at least one of the five primary pathogens, and 39% were positive for multiple species. Among the viruses, there was a significant co-occurrence of CDV and CAV-1. Longitudinal data on a subset of animals revealed that among individuals who were diagnosed as seropositive on first capture, 33-100% became seronegative for the pathogen of interest when reexamined at a later date. Thus, free-ranging urban raccoons have been exposed to multiple infectious agents, some of which may pose risks to humans and to nonvaccinated domestic and captive animal populations.
Kazami, Ayako; Watanabe, Hideki; Hayashi, Tetsu; Kobayashi, Kazuhiko; Ogawa, Yasuki; Yamamoto, Koshi; Adachi, Yoshikazu
In 1996 and 1997, the seroprevalence against Leptospira in parturient sows with premature birth or stillbirth from two herds was investigated. In three out of four sow serum samples obtained in Gunma Prefecture, the antibody titers to Leptospira interrogans serovar copenhageni (M20) were higher than 10,000 (the reciprocal of the serum dilution). Furthermore, the antibody titers to L. interrogans serovar canicola (Hond Utrecht IV) were significantly high in the three sows and the titers ranged from 1,000 to 3,000. In sows obtained in Chiba Prefecture, significantly high antibody titers to serovar copenhageni (M20) were confirmed in eight out of 40 sows, and antibody titers greater than 10,000 in six of them. Significantly high antibody titers to L. interrogans serovar icterohaemorrhagiae (RGA) and L. canicola (Hond Utrecht IV) were confirmed in four and 18 out of the 40 sows, respectively, compared with the titers to the other serovars. These findings may indicate the prevalence of leptospirosis in pig herds in both Gunma and Chiba Prefectures.
Picardeau, Mathieu; Le Dantec, Corinne; Richard, Guy-Franck; Saint Girons, Isabelle
Toxin-antitoxin systems encoded by bacterial plasmids and chromosomes typically consist of a toxin that inhibits growth of the host cell and a specific antitoxin. In this report, the chpK gene from the chromosomal toxin-antitoxin locus of the spirochete Leptospira interrogans was studied in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic systems. Cloning of the the spirochetal chpK gene into a mycobacterial expressing vector led to dramatic reductions of transformation efficiency in both Mycobacterium smegmatis and Mycobacterium bovis BCG. However, few mycobacterial transformants were obtained. This result could be due to plasmid structural modifications leading to disruption of chpK expression, suggesting that L. interrogans ChpK is highly toxic for mycobacteria. Presence of the L. interrogans chpK gene was also found to inhibit cell growth of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. These results show that ChpK possesses a broad activity against both prokaryotes and eukaryotes, suggesting that the cellular target of the toxin is conserved in these organisms.
Kern, Bryant; Mahoney, Kathleen; Norton, Andrew; Patnayak, Devi; Van Deelen, Timothy
White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) are commonly exposed to disease agents that affect livestock but environmental factors that predispose deer to exposure are unknown for many pathogens. We trapped deer during winter months on two study areas (Northern Forest and Eastern Farmland) in Wisconsin from 2010 to 2013. Deer were tested for exposure to six serovars of Leptospira interrogans (grippotyphosa, icterohaemorrhagiae, canicola, bratislava, pomona, and hardjo), bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV-1 and BVDV-2), infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus (IBR), and parainfluenza 3 virus (PI3). We used logistic regression to model potential intrinsic (e.g., age, sex) and extrinsic (e.g., land type, study site, year, exposure to multiple pathogens) variables we considered biologically meaningful to exposure of deer to livestock pathogens. Deer sampled in 2010–2011 did not demonstrate exposure to BVDV, so we did not test for BVDV in subsequent years. Deer had evidence of exposure to PI3 (24.7%), IBR (7.9%), Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona (11.7%), L. i. bratislava (1.0%), L. i. grippotyphosa (2.5%) and L. i. hardjo (0.3%). Deer did not demonstrate exposure to L. interrogans serovars canicola and icterohaemorrhagiae. For PI3, we found that capture site and year influenced exposure. Fawns (n = 119) were not exposed to L. i. pomona, but land type was an important predictor of exposure to L. i. pomona for older deer. Our results serve as baseline exposure levels of Wisconsin white-tailed deer to livestock pathogens, and helped to identify important factors that explain deer exposure to livestock pathogens. PMID:26030150
Stamm, L V; Parrish, E A; Gherardini, F C
A recombinant plasmid carrying the recA gene of Leptospira biflexa serovar patoc was isolated from a cosmid library of genomic DNA by complementation of an Escherichia coli recA mutation. The cloned serovar patoc recA gene efficiently restored resistance to UV radiation and methyl methanesulfonate. Recombination proficiency was also restored, as measured by the formation of Lac+ recombinants from duplicated mutant lacZ genes. Additionally, the cloned recA gene increased the spontaneous and mitomycin C-induced production of lambda phage in lysogens of an E. coli recA mutant. The product of the cloned recA gene was identified in maxicells as a polypeptide with an Mr of 43,000. Antibodies prepared against the E. coli RecA protein cross-reacted with the serovar patoc RecA protein, indicating structural conservation. Southern hybridization data showed that the serovar patoc recA gene has diverged from the recA gene of L. interrogans, Leptonema illini, and E. coli. With the exception of the RecA protein of L. interrogans serovar hardjo, the RecA protein of the Leptospira serovars and L. illini were synthesized at elevated levels following treatment of cells with nalidixic acid. The level of detectable RecA correlated with previous studies demonstrating that free-living cells of L. biflexa serovars and L. illini were considerably more resistant to DNA-damaging agents than were those of parasitic L. interrogans serovars. RecA protein was not detected in cells of virulent Treponema pallidum or Borrelia burgdorferi. Images PMID:2036006
Troxell, Bryan; Zhang, Jun-Jie; Bourret, Travis J; Zeng, Melody Yue; Blum, Janice; Gherardini, Frank; Hassan, Hosni M; Yang, X Frank
Pathogenic spirochetes cause clinically relevant diseases in humans and animals, such as Lyme disease and leptospirosis. The causative agent of Lyme disease, Borrelia burgdorferi, and the causative agent of leptospirosis, Leptospria interrogans, encounter reactive oxygen species (ROS) during their enzootic cycles. This report demonstrated that physiologically relevant concentrations of pyruvate, a potent H2O2 scavenger, and provided passive protection to B. burgdorferi and L. interrogans against H2O2. When extracellular pyruvate was absent, both spirochetes were sensitive to a low dose of H2O2 (≈0.6 µM per h) generated by glucose oxidase (GOX). Despite encoding a functional catalase, L. interrogans was more sensitive than B. burgdorferi to H2O2 generated by GOX, which may be due to the inherent resistance of B. burgdorferi because of the virtual absence of intracellular iron. In B. burgdorferi, the nucleotide excision repair (NER) and the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) pathways were important for survival during H2O2 challenge since deletion of the uvrB or the mutS genes enhanced its sensitivity to H2O2 killing; however, the presence of pyruvate fully protected ΔuvrB and ΔmutS from H2O2 killing further demonstrating the importance of pyruvate in protection. These findings demonstrated that pyruvate, in addition to its classical role in central carbon metabolism, serves as an important H2O2 scavenger for pathogenic spirochetes. Furthermore, pyruvate reduced ROS generated by human neutrophils in response to the Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) agonist zymosan. In addition, pyruvate reduced neutrophil-derived ROS in response to B. burgdorferi, which also activates host expression through TLR2 signaling. Thus, pathogenic spirochetes may exploit the metabolite pyruvate, present in blood and tissues, to survive H2O2 generated by the host antibacterial response generated during infection.
Troxell, Bryan; Zhang, Jun-Jie; Bourret, Travis J.; Zeng, Melody Yue; Blum, Janice; Gherardini, Frank; Hassan, Hosni M.; Yang, X. Frank
Pathogenic spirochetes cause clinically relevant diseases in humans and animals, such as Lyme disease and leptospirosis. The causative agent of Lyme disease, Borrelia burgdorferi, and the causative agent of leptospirosis, Leptospria interrogans, encounter reactive oxygen species (ROS) during their enzootic cycles. This report demonstrated that physiologically relevant concentrations of pyruvate, a potent H2O2 scavenger, and provided passive protection to B. burgdorferi and L. interrogans against H2O2. When extracellular pyruvate was absent, both spirochetes were sensitive to a low dose of H2O2 (≈0.6 µM per h) generated by glucose oxidase (GOX). Despite encoding a functional catalase, L. interrogans was more sensitive than B. burgdorferi to H2O2 generated by GOX, which may be due to the inherent resistance of B. burgdorferi because of the virtual absence of intracellular iron. In B. burgdorferi, the nucleotide excision repair (NER) and the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) pathways were important for survival during H2O2 challenge since deletion of the uvrB or the mutS genes enhanced its sensitivity to H2O2 killing; however, the presence of pyruvate fully protected ΔuvrB and ΔmutS from H2O2 killing further demonstrating the importance of pyruvate in protection. These findings demonstrated that pyruvate, in addition to its classical role in central carbon metabolism, serves as an important H2O2 scavenger for pathogenic spirochetes. Furthermore, pyruvate reduced ROS generated by human neutrophils in response to the Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) agonist zymosan. In addition, pyruvate reduced neutrophil-derived ROS in response to B. burgdorferi, which also activates host expression through TLR2 signaling. Thus, pathogenic spirochetes may exploit the metabolite pyruvate, present in blood and tissues, to survive H2O2 generated by the host antibacterial response generated during infection. PMID:24392147
Dubay, Shelli; Jacques, Christopher; Golden, Nigel; Kern, Bryant; Mahoney, Kathleen; Norton, Andrew; Patnayak, Devi; Van Deelen, Timothy
White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) are commonly exposed to disease agents that affect livestock but environmental factors that predispose deer to exposure are unknown for many pathogens. We trapped deer during winter months on two study areas (Northern Forest and Eastern Farmland) in Wisconsin from 2010 to 2013. Deer were tested for exposure to six serovars of Leptospira interrogans (grippotyphosa, icterohaemorrhagiae, canicola, bratislava, pomona, and hardjo), bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV-1 and BVDV-2), infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus (IBR), and parainfluenza 3 virus (PI3). We used logistic regression to model potential intrinsic (e.g., age, sex) and extrinsic (e.g., land type, study site, year, exposure to multiple pathogens) variables we considered biologically meaningful to exposure of deer to livestock pathogens. Deer sampled in 2010-2011 did not demonstrate exposure to BVDV, so we did not test for BVDV in subsequent years. Deer had evidence of exposure to PI3 (24.7%), IBR (7.9%), Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona (11.7%), L. i. bratislava (1.0%), L. i. grippotyphosa (2.5%) and L. i. hardjo (0.3%). Deer did not demonstrate exposure to L. interrogans serovars canicola and icterohaemorrhagiae. For PI3, we found that capture site and year influenced exposure. Fawns (n = 119) were not exposed to L. i. pomona, but land type was an important predictor of exposure to L. i. pomona for older deer. Our results serve as baseline exposure levels of Wisconsin white-tailed deer to livestock pathogens, and helped to identify important factors that explain deer exposure to livestock pathogens.
Mazhar, Momal; Kao, Janet J
Leptospirosis is a zoonosis caused by the spirochete Leptospira interrogans. Most cases of leptospirosis are mild to moderate, and self-limited. The course of disease, however, may be complicated by multiorgan dysfunction such as in Weil's disease. We present a case of Weil's disease with pancreatitis in a young Caucasian man residing in Hawai‘i. Although leptospirosis is common in Hawai‘i, few patients present with pancreatitis. This report of leptospirosis-induced pancreatitis should help raise awareness of clinicians to assess for pancreatitis when evaluating a patient with leptospirosis and acute abdominal pain. PMID:27738562
Kik, M J L; Goris, M G; Bos, J H; Hartskeerl, R A; Dorrestein, G M
An outbreak of leptospirosis in seals (Phoca vitulina) in captivity is described. In a zoo in The Netherlands 5 adult seals died within 12 days. At necropsy all animals showed signs of acute septicaemia, consistent with acute leptospirosis. Serological examination of one animal was positive for antibodies against Leptospira interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae and the serologically closely related serovar Copenhageni. Polymerase chain reaction was positive in one other animal. 8 nutria (Myocastor coypus) were examined, serologically, through bacteriological culture and PCR. 81,8% (9/11) were serologically positive for Leptospira. The seals and nutria were housed in the same water system.
Kyriakidis, Ioannis; Samara, Pinelopi; Papa, Anna
Studies on cytokine levels in Weil's syndrome are lacking. In this study, TNF-α, sTNFR1, IL-6, IL-8 and IL-10 levels were measured in 44 serum samples of patients diagnosed with Leptospira interrogans serovar icterohaemorrhagiae infection. TNF-α levels linked with pulmonary hemorrhagic implications, while elevated sTNFR1 and IL-10 levels linked with fatal cases. IL-6 and IL-8 did not seem to affect the outcome of the disease. Immune response pattern in Weil's syndrome bears resemblance to other patterns described for hemorrhagic fevers. IL-10/TNF-α ratio is proposed as a marker for prognosis.
Wilson, T. S.
An investigation was undertaken to assess the present importance of leptospiral infections in Northern Ireland, and in particular to look for evidence of infection by leptospiral serotypes other than L. icterohaemorrhagiae and L. canicola. Blood samples from 335 patients, sent to the laboratory for a variety of tests, were examined. After initial screening with five groups of pooled antigens, tests for leptospiral agglutinins were completed with formolized antigens prepared from 13 different serotypes. In seven patients a diagnosis of acute leptospirosis was made while nine others showed serological evidence of previous leptospiral infection. Attempts to isolate leptospirae by culture from 29 blood samples were unsuccessful. The serological results indicate that two additional leptospiral serotypes, namely L. ballum and L. bratislava, are causing human infection in Northern Ireland, and presumably also in other parts of the British Isles. Some clinical and epidemiological features associated with different types of leptospiral infection are described. It is stressed that leptospirosis is essentially a febrile illness, that meningeal symptoms are common, and that (contrary to popular belief) jaundice is by no means a constant occurrence. The implications of these findings are discussed, with special reference to the diagnosis of leptospiral infections. Laboratory diagnostic procedures are briefly reviewed, and the possible deficiencies of the agglutination test commonly used in Britain are pointed out. Some suggestions are made concerning both clinical and laboratory aspects of diagnosis, and the need for a reliable screening test for all forms of leptospiral infection is emphasized. PMID:5919352
Jung, Byeong Yeal; Lee, Kyung Woo; Ha, Tae Young
Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease of global importance, and has a worldwide distribution. The present study aimed to determine leptospiral seroprevalence in clinically healthy racing horses from all three racecourses in Korea. Serum samples from 1,226 racing horses were examined using a microscopic agglutination test to detect the presence of antibodies against 18 Leptospira serovars. Of the tested samples, 307 (25.0%) were found to be positive. The distribution of seroprevalence differed significantly by racecourse (P=0.004); the Jeju course had the highest incidence (31.1%), followed by the Seoul (25.2%) and Busan (19.5%) racecourses. Seasonal variation in seropositivity was also apparent (P=0.000), being lower in spring (13.0%) and winter (12.5%), and higher in summer (36.7%) and autumn (34.7%). No significant age- or gender-related difference in seroprevalence was noted in this study (P>0.05). Seroprevalence was higher (P=0.006) among ponies than among thoroughbreds. Sejroe was the most frequently detected serovar (n=236), followed by Bratislava (n=35), Ballum (n=16), Autumnalis (n=10), and Canicola (n=10). The majority of serum titers were relatively low; most values ranged from 1:100 (n=217) to 1:200 (n=69). These results suggest that the Sejroe serovar may be maintained in the racing horse population in Korea.
Cerri, D; Ebani, V V; Fratini, F; Pinzauti, P; Andreani, E
Serological data on leptospira infection were reported and discussed. From 1995 to 2001, the blood serum samples of 9885 domestic and wild animals and humans, living in Northern and Central Italy, were examined by the macroagglutination test (MAT) employing bratislava, ballum, canicola, grippotyphosa, icterohaemorrhagiae, pomona, hardjo and tarassovi serovars as antigens. Considering sera with > or = 1:400 antibody titers as positive, 674 (6.81%) animals scored positive. Sheep, horses, pigs and dogs gave the highest number of positive responses, particularly against the serovar bratislava and, for dogs, against icterohaemorrhagiae. The percentages of seropositivity observed in the most important animal species were: 12.13% in ovine (132 positive among 1088 tested animals), 11.40% in horses (107 positive animals among 938), 9.46% in swine (123 positive animals among 1299), 6.36% in dogs (278 positive animals among 4369), 2.39% in wild boars (11 positive animals among 459), 1.39% in deer (2 positive animals among 143), 0.48% in cattle (3 positive animals among 626). Among 250 human sera examined, 14 (5.60%) scored positive.
Romero, Eliete C; Yasuda, Paulo H
A polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assay which amplifies repetitive DNA elements present within bacterial genomes was used to characterize and differentiate Leptospira sp. Thirty-five strains from a reference culture collection and 18 clinical isolates which had been previously analyzed by cross agglutinin absorption test (CAAT) were evaluated by this technique. PCR results from analysis of the reference culture collection showed no bands corresponding to serogroups Australis, Autumnalis, Bataviae, Celledoni, Cynopteri, Djasiman, Panama, Pomona, Pyrogenes, and Tarassovi. However, the PCR method was able to clearly discriminate the serogroups Andamana, Ballum, Canicola, Grippotyphosa, Hebdomadis, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Javanica, Sejroe, Semaranga, and Shermani. Clinical isolates previously characterized by CAAT as serovar Copenhageni, serovar Castellonis, and as serovar Canicola were in agreement with PCR results. The clinical isolate previously characterized as serovar Pomona was not differentiated by PCR. Forty additional clinical isolates from patients with leptospirosis obtained in São Paulo, Brazil were also evaluated by this PCR method. Thirty-nine of these were determined to belong to serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae (97.5%) and one to serogroup Sejroe (2.5%). These results demonstrate that the PCR method described in this study has utility for rapid typing of Leptospira sp. at the serogroup level and can be used in epidemiological survey.
Lehmann, Jason S.; Corey, Victoria C.; Ricaldi, Jessica N.; Vinetz, Joseph M.; Winzeler, Elizabeth A.; Matthias, Michael A.
Leptospirosis is the most common zoonotic disease worldwide with an estimated 500,000 severe cases reported annually, and case fatality rates of 12–25%, due primarily to acute kidney and lung injuries. Despite its prevalence, the molecular mechanisms underlying leptospirosis pathogenesis remain poorly understood. To identify virulence-related genes in Leptospira interrogans, we delineated cumulative genome changes that occurred during serial in vitro passage of a highly virulent strain of L. interrogans serovar Lai into a nearly avirulent isogenic derivative. Comparison of protein coding and computationally predicted noncoding RNA (ncRNA) genes between these two polyclonal strains identified 15 nonsynonymous single nucleotide variant (nsSNV) alleles that increased in frequency and 19 that decreased, whereas no changes in allelic frequency were observed among the ncRNA genes. Some of the nsSNV alleles were in six genes shown previously to be transcriptionally upregulated during exposure to in vivo-like conditions. Five of these nsSNVs were in evolutionarily conserved positions in genes related to signal transduction and metabolism. Frequency changes of minor nsSNV alleles identified in this study likely contributed to the loss of virulence during serial in vitro culture. The identification of new virulence-associated genes should spur additional experimental inquiry into their potential role in Leptospira pathogenesis. PMID:26711524
Delaney, Martha A; Colegrove, Kathleen M; Spraker, Terry R; Zuerner, Richard L; Galloway, Renee L; Gulland, Frances M D
During rehabilitation, acute renal failure due to leptospirosis occurred in eight male northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) that stranded along the central California coast in 2011. Characteristic histologic lesions including renal tubular degeneration, necrosis, and mineralization, and mild lymphoplasmacytic interstitial nephritis were noted in the six animals examined. Immunohistochemistry, bacterial culture, and PCR were positive in 2/3, 2/3, and 3/4 seals, respectively, and 6/8 had high serum antibody titers to Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis confirmed one isolate as serovar pomona. Variable number tandem repeat (VNTR) analysis showed both elephant seal isolates were identical to each other but distinct from those isolated from California sea lions (Zalophus californianus). The time from stranding to onset of azotemia was 1 to 38 (median=24) days, suggesting some seals were infected at the rehabilitation facility. Based on temporal and spatial incidence of infection, transmission among elephant seals likely occurred during rehabilitation. Molecular (VNTR) analysis of the two isolates indicates there is a unique L. interrogans serovar pomona genotype in elephant seals, and sea lions were not the source of infection prior to or during rehabilitation. This study confirms the susceptibility of northern elephant seals to leptospirosis, indicates intraspecies transmission during rehabilitation, and reports the first isolation and preliminary characterization of leptospires from elephant seals.
Benaroudj, Nadia; Saul, Frederick; Bellalou, Jacques; Miras, Isabelle; Weber, Patrick; Bondet, Vincent; Murray, Gerald L; Adler, Ben; Ristow, Paula; Louvel, Hélène; Haouz, Ahmed; Picardeau, Mathieu
Pathogenic Leptospira species are the etiological agents of the widespread zoonotic disease leptospirosis. Most organisms, including Leptospira, require divalent cations for proper growth, but because of their high reactivity, these metals are toxic at high concentrations. Therefore, bacteria have acquired strategies to maintain metal homeostasis, such as metal import and efflux. By screening Leptospira biflexa transposon mutants for their ability to use Mn(2+), we have identified a gene encoding a putative orphan ATP-binding cassette (ABC) ATPase of unknown function. Inactivation of this gene in both L. biflexa and L. interrogans strains led to mutants unable to grow in medium in which iron was replaced by Mn(2+), suggesting an involvement of this ABC ATPase in divalent cation uptake. A mutation in this ATPase-coding gene increased susceptibility to Mn(2+) toxicity. Recombinant ABC ATPase of the pathogen L. interrogans exhibited Mg(2+)-dependent ATPase activity involving a P-loop motif. The structure of this ATPase was solved from a crystal containing two monomers in the asymmetric unit. Each monomer adopted a canonical two-subdomain organization of the ABC ATPase fold with an α/β subdomain containing the Walker motifs and an α subdomain containing the ABC signature motif (LSSGE). The two monomers were arranged in a head-to-tail orientation, forming a V-shaped particle with all the conserved ABC motifs at the dimer interface, similar to functional ABC ATPases. These results provide the first structural and functional characterization of a leptospiral ABC ATPase.
Raton, Vincent; Zilber, Anne-Laure; Gasqui, Patrick; Faure, Eva; Baurier, Florence; Vourc’h, Gwenaël; Kodjo, Angeli; Combes, Benoît
Human leptospirosis is a zoonotic and potentially fatal disease that has increasingly been reported in both developing and developed countries, including France. However, our understanding of the basic aspects of the epidemiology of this disease, including the source of Leptospira serogroup Australis infections in humans and domestic animals, remains incomplete. We investigated the genetic diversity of Leptospira in 28 species of wildlife other than rats using variable number tandem repeat (VNTR) and multispacer sequence typing (MST). The DNA of pathogenic Leptospira was detected in the kidney tissues of 201 individuals out of 3,738 tested individuals. A wide diversity, including 50 VNTR profiles and 8 MST profiles, was observed. Hedgehogs and mustelid species had the highest risk of being infected (logistic regression, OR = 66.8, CI95% = 30.9–144 and OR = 16.7, CI95% = 8.7–31.8, respectively). Almost all genetic profiles obtained from the hedgehogs were related to Leptospira interrogans Australis, suggesting the latter as a host-adapted bacterium, whereas mustelid species were infected by various genotypes, suggesting their interaction with Leptospira was different. By providing an inventory of the circulating strains of Leptospira and by pointing to hedgehogs as a potential reservoir of L. interrogans Australis, our study advances current knowledge on Leptospira animal carriers, and this information could serve to enhance epidemiological investigations in the future. PMID:27680672
Iwamoto, Emiko; Wada, Yuko; Fujisaki, Yuka; Umeki, Saori; Jones, Miyuki Y; Mizuno, Takuya; Itamoto, Kazuhito; Maeda, Ken; Iwata, Hiroyuki; Okuda, Masaru
Leptospirosis is an infectious disease caused by Leptospira interrogans sensu lato and is common in both humans and animals. In the present study, serum samples were collected from 801 dogs across all 47 prefectures in Japan, and evaluated with a microscopic agglutination test (MAT), using 5 major L. interrogans serovars (Icterohaemorrhagiae, Canicola, Autumnalis, Hebdomadis, and Australis) as antigens, and an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) using recombinant OmpL1 protein as the antigen. Across all dogs tested, 217 (27.0%) and 29 (3.6%) were MAT- and ELISA-positive, respectively. However, evidence strongly suggests that MAT also detected antibodies produced by vaccination. Of 243 dogs never inoculated with any canine vaccine, 41 (16.9%) from 23 prefectures were MAT and/or ELISA positive. The most commonly detected serovar was Icterohaemorrhagiae (22 dogs, 19 prefectures). Our results suggest that there are dogs with subclinical Leptospira infection throughout Japan. To the best of our knowledge, the present study is the first nationwide survey of Leptospira infection in dogs, and the findings are relevant not only for clinical veterinary medicine but also for public health.
Calderón, Alfonso; Rodríguez, Virginia; Máttar, Salim; Arrieta, Germán
Leptospirosis is a reemerging zoonosis of global distribution and is one of the causes of hemorrhagic fevers in the tropics. We sought to determine seroprevalence in humans and animals and isolate Leptospira interrogans sensu lato in domestic animals, rodents, and water sources. The study was conducted in a tropical area of the middle Sinú in Cordoba, Colombia. In a prospective descriptive study, we collected blood and urine from pigs and dogs, sera from rural human workers, sera and kidney macerates of rodents, and water samples from environmental sources. We used microagglutination to screen for antibodies to 13 serovars. Strains were cultured on the Ellinghausen-McCullough-Johnson-Harris medium and confirmed by PCR amplifying lipL32 gene. Seroprevalence was 55.9% in pigs, 35.2% in dogs, and 75.8% in humans; no antibody was detected, and no Leptospira were isolated from kidney macerates of rodents. Seven L. interrogans sensu lato strains were isolated: three from pigs, two from dogs, and two from water. High seroprevalence in pigs, dogs, and humans, concomitant to isolation of strains, demonstrates that in Cordoba, transmission exists among animals, the environment, and humans, which warrants the implementation of public health intervention measures to reduce the epidemiological impact of leptospirosis in the region.
Schreiber, Paul; Martin, Virginie; Najbar, Wojciech; Sanquer, Annaelle; Gueguen, Sylvie; Lebreux, Bernard
Prevention of urinary shedding of Leptospira interrogans spp. by chronically infected dogs remains a key objective of the vaccination in dogs against leptospirosis which is a zoonotic disease. An inactivated bivalent vaccine composed of Leptospira interrogans serovars icterohaemorrhagiae [L. icterohaemorrhagiae] and canicola [L. canicola] bacterins was tested for its ability to protect puppies against a challenge exposure with L. icterohaemorrhagiae. The vaccine was administered twice at a 3-week interval to six puppies aged from 8 to 9 weeks. Six other puppies were used as unvaccinated controls. All puppies were challenged 2 weeks after the second vaccine injection by intraperitoneal (IP) administration of L. icterohaemorrhagiae (day 0). Clinical signs, haematological and biochemical changes and evidence of Leptospira in blood, urine and kidney were monitored for 4 weeks after the challenge exposure (days 0-28). Puppies were euthanised on day 28 for post-mortem and histological examinations of liver and kidney. Control group presented clinical pictures of severe or subclinical infection. One dog developed severe clinical signs (hypothermia, depression, anorexia, abdominal pain, dehydration, icterus, weight loss) and died on post-infection day (PID) 7 due to an acute renal failure. Gross and microscopic lesions were in accordance with this clinical pattern. In the five remaining control dogs, the challenge exposure induced mainly a systemic infection including leptospiraemia, leptospiruria and renal carriage. The vaccinated group remained healthy throughout the study period. In conclusion, immunisation with a Leptospira vaccine was shown to protect dogs against symptomatology and leptospiraemia, urine shedding and renal infection.
Klaasen, H L B M; van der Veen, M; Molkenboer, M J C H; Bruderer, U
Nobivac® Lepto (MSD Animal Health) is a non-adjuvanted canine leptospirosis vaccine containing inactivated whole cells of Leptospira interrogans serogroup Canicola serovar Portlandvere and L. interrogans serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae serovar Copenhageni. The current standard in vivo potency test is a hamster challenge test associated with major drawbacks such as animal suffering and poor reproducibility. Here, the quantification of antigenic mass by ELISA as a new in vitro potency test is described, supporting the 3Rs concept (replacement, reduction, and refinement of animal tests) and in accordance with European Pharmacopoeia Monograph 0447 (Canine Leptospirosis Vaccine [Inactivated]). The two corresponding sandwich ELISAs are based on monoclonal antibodies specific for immunodominant leptospiral lipopolysaccharide epitopes. Protection in passive immunization experiments demonstrate that these monoclonal antibodies recognize key protective antigens in currently licensed human and veterinary whole cell Leptospira vaccines. The high precision and robustness renders the two ELISAs much more reliable correlates of potency in dogs than the hamster potency test. The recent approval of these assays for a new canine leptospirosis vaccine is an important contribution to the 3Rs in quality control testing of Leptospira vaccines.
Ribotta, M J; Higgins, R; Gottschalk, M; Lallier, R
Serology plays an important role in the diagnosis of leptospirosis. Few laboratories have the resources, expertise, or facilities to perform the microscopic agglutination test (MAT). Thus, there is a need for a rapid and simple serological test that could be used in any diagnostic laboratory. In this study, a genus-specific, heat-stable antigenic preparation from Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona was used in an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the detection of leptospiral antibodies in dog sera. This antigenic preparation reacted with rabbit antisera against L. interrogans serovars bratislava, autumnalis, icterohaemorrhagiae and pomona and with rabbit antiserum against L. kirschneri serovar grippotyphosa. The ELISA showed a relative specificity of 95.6% with 158 dog sera which were negative at a dilution of 1:100 in the MAT for serovars pomona, bratislava, icterohaemorrhagiae, autumnalis, hardjo, and grippotyphosa. The relative sensitivity of this assay with 21 dog sera that revealed serovars MAT titres of > or =100 to different serovars was 100%. This assay is easily standardized, technically more advantageous than MAT, and uses an antigenic preparation that can be routinely prepared in large amounts. It was concluded that this ELISA is sufficiently sensitive test to be used as an initial screening test for the detection of leptospiral antibodies in canine sera, with subsequent confirmation of positive test results with the MAT.
Koizumi, Nobuo; Muto, Maki; Yamamoto, Seigo; Baba, Yoshitaka; Kudo, Momotoshi; Tamae, Yoshinobu; Shimomura, Koji; Takatori, Ichiro; Iwakiri, Akira; Ishikawa, Koji; Soma, Hirotoshi; Watanabe, Haruo
We surveyed reservoir animals of leptospires in the northern part of Miyazaki Prefecture, where a cluster of human leptospirosis had occurred during the summer of 2006. Leptospira was isolated from 6 of 57 large Japanese field mice (Apodemus speciosus). The serogroups of the isolates were Autumnalis (5 strains) and Hebdomadis (1 strain) and the partial nucleotide sequences of their flaB genes suggested that the isolates belonged to L. interrogans. The human patient sera reacted specifically with the Leptospira strain isolated from the mice captured around the area where each patient occurred, suggesting that mice are the source of human infection. We also detected leptospiral DNAs by flaB-polymerase chain reaction in the kidneys of large feral animals; wild boars (positive ratio 10.3%; 4 of 39) and deer (19.2%; 10 of 52). The Leptospira spp. harbored by these animals were deduced to be L. interrogans (in 5 animals) and L. borgpetersenii (in 9 animals) by the nucleotide sequences of the amplicons. Anti-Leptospira antibodies were also detected among symptomatic hound dogs. These results suggest that these feral animals may cause leptospirosis and pose a potential risk to hunters and workers in the meat processing industry.
Miotto, Bruno Alonso; Moreno, Luisa Zanolli; Guilloux, Aline Gil Alves; Sousa, Gisele Oliveira de; Loureiro, Ana Paula; Moreno, Andrea Micke; Lilenbaum, Walter; Vasconcellos, Silvio Arruda; Heinemann, Marcos Bryan; Hagiwara, Mitika Kuribayashi
Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease of global importance caused by pathogenic Leptospira species. Dogs can become asymptomatically infected, acting like reservoir hosts for pathogenic Leptospira, notably Leptospira interrogans serovar Canicola. Identification of such individuals and characterization of leptospires involved in chronic infections may unravel the role of dogs in the epidemiology of particular leptospiral strains. The aim of the present work was to describe the first Leptospira santarosai strain isolated from a dog. The dog was kept in a public shelter in São Paulo city, Brazil, and presented asymptomatic urinary shedding detected by PCR. Prospective evaluation was performed to fully characterize its chronic carrier state. The dog did not present anti-Leptospira titles or clinical/laboratorial abnormalities during the evaluations; nevertheless long-term urinary shedding was confirmed by PCR and leptospires were recovered from two occasions. The isolated strain was molecularly characterized by partial 16S rRNA and secY gene sequencing and MLST analysis. Serogroup identification was performed using polyclonal antibodies. The strain was identified as Leptospira santarosai, serogroup Sejroe. This is the first evidence in the literature of the isolation of L. santarosai in dogs. Our findings show that dogs can persistently harbor leptospires other than L. interrogans.
Silva, Éverton F.; Medeiros, Marco A.; McBride, Alan J. A.; Matsunaga, Jim; Esteves, Gabriela S.; Ramos, João G. R.; Santos, Cleiton S.; Croda, Júlio; Homma, Akira; Dellagostin, Odir A.; Haake, David A.; Reis, Mitermayer G.; Ko, Albert I.
Subunit vaccines are a potential intervention strategy against leptospirosis, which is a major public health problem in developing countries and a veterinary disease in livestock and companion animals worldwide. Leptospiral immunoglobulin-like (Lig) proteins are a family of surface-exposed determinants that have Ig-like repeat domains found in virulence factors such as intimin and invasin. We expressed fragments of the repeat domain regions of LigA and LigB from Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni. Immunization of Golden Syrian hamsters with Lig fragments in Freund’s adjuvant induced robust antibody responses against recombinant protein and native protein, as detected by ELISA and immunoblot, respectively. A single fragment, LigANI, which corresponds to the six carboxy-terminal Ig-like repeat domains of the LigA molecule, conferred immunoprotection against mortality (67-100%, P <0.05) in hamsters which received a lethal inoculum of L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni. However, immunization with this fragment did not confer sterilizing immunity. These findings indicate that the carboxy-terminal portion of LigA is an immunoprotective domain and may serve as a vaccine candidate for human and veterinary leptospirosis. PMID:17629368
Buyuktimkin, Bora; Saier, Milton H.
Select species of the bacterial genus Leptospira are causative agents of leptospirosis, an emerging global zoonosis affecting nearly one million people worldwide annually. We examined two Leptospira pathogens, L. interrogans serovar Lai str. 56601 and L. borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo-bovis str. L550, as well as the free-living leptospiral saprophyte, L. biflexa serovar Patoc str. ‘Patoc 1 (Ames)’. The transport proteins of these leptospires were identified and compared using bioinformatics to gain an appreciation for which proteins may be related to pathogenesis and saprophytism. L. biflexa possesses a disproportionately high number of secondary carriers for metabolite uptake and environmental adaptability as well as an increased number of inorganic cation transporters providing ionic homeostasis and effective osmoregulation in a rapidly changing environment. L. interrogans and L. borgpetersenii possess far fewer transporters, but those that they have are remarkably similar, with near-equivalent representation in most transporter families. These two Leptospira pathogens also possess intact sphingomyelinases, holins, and virulence-related outer membrane porins. These virulence-related factors, in conjunction with decreased transporter substrate versatility, indicate that pathogenicity was accompanied by progressively narrowing ecological niches and the emergence of a limited set of proteins responsible for host invasion. The variability of host tropism and mortality rates by infectious leptospires suggests that small differences in individual sets of proteins play important physiological and pathological roles. PMID:26247102
Perolat, P; Merien, F; Ellis, W A; Baranton, G
Leptospira serovar hardjo isolates of the hardjoprajitno and hardjobovis genotypes were characterized by ribotyping, arbitrarily primed PCR (AP-PCR) fingerprinting, and the study of mapped restriction site polymorphisms (MRSPs) in rrs and rrl genes. After restriction of chromosomal DNA with BglII, EcoRI, or HindIII, each genotype was individualized with a distinct ribotype. The fingerprints produced by AP-PCR with seven primers clearly separated the two groups; primers KF and RSP produced species-specific products which assigned hardjoprajitno and hardjobovis isolates to the species L. interrogans sensu stricto and L. borgpetersenii, respectively. Furthermore, AP-PCR fingerprints gave evidence of a considerable genomic heterogeneity at the strain level among the hardjobovis group. Conversely, the hardjoprajitno group was homogeneous. MRSP profiles in ribosomal genes indicated that hardjoprajitno and hardjobovis isolates belonged to L. interrogans MRSP group B and L. borgpetersenii group C, respectively. AP-PCR and determination of MRSPs in ribosomal genes proved to be quick and reliable methods for typing Leptospira strains and for studying intraspecific population structures.
Vieira, Monica L.; de Andrade, Sonia A.; Morais, Zenaide M.; Vasconcellos, Silvio A.; Dagli, Maria Lucia Z.; Nascimento, Ana Lucia T. O.
Leptospirosis is a worldwide zoonotic and neglected infectious disease of human and veterinary concern, caused by pathogenic Leptospira species. Although bleeding is a common symptom of severe leptospirosis, the cause of hemorrhage is not completely understood. In severe infections, modulation of hemostasis by pathogens is an important virulence mechanism, and hemostatic impairments such as coagulation/fibrinolysis dysfunction are frequently observed. Here, we analyze the coagulation status of experimentally infected hamsters in an attempt to determine coagulation interferences and the origin of leptospirosis hemorrhagic symptomatology. Hamsters were experimentally infected with L. interrogans. The lungs, kidneys, and livers were collected for culture, histopathology, and coagulation assays. L. interrogans infection disturbs normal coagulation in the organs of animals. Our results suggest the presence of a thrombin-like factor or FX activator, which is able to activate FII in the leptospirosis organ extracts. The activity of those factors is accelerated in the prothrombinase complex. Additionally, we show for the first time that live leptospires act as a surface for the prothrombinase complex assembly. Our results contribute to the understanding of leptospirosis pathophysiological mechanisms and may open new routes for the discovery of novel treatments in the severe manifestations of the disease.
Ayral, Florence; Djelouadji, Zoheira; Raton, Vincent; Zilber, Anne-Laure; Gasqui, Patrick; Faure, Eva; Baurier, Florence; Vourc'h, Gwenaël; Kodjo, Angeli; Combes, Benoît
Human leptospirosis is a zoonotic and potentially fatal disease that has increasingly been reported in both developing and developed countries, including France. However, our understanding of the basic aspects of the epidemiology of this disease, including the source of Leptospira serogroup Australis infections in humans and domestic animals, remains incomplete. We investigated the genetic diversity of Leptospira in 28 species of wildlife other than rats using variable number tandem repeat (VNTR) and multispacer sequence typing (MST). The DNA of pathogenic Leptospira was detected in the kidney tissues of 201 individuals out of 3,738 tested individuals. A wide diversity, including 50 VNTR profiles and 8 MST profiles, was observed. Hedgehogs and mustelid species had the highest risk of being infected (logistic regression, OR = 66.8, CI95% = 30.9-144 and OR = 16.7, CI95% = 8.7-31.8, respectively). Almost all genetic profiles obtained from the hedgehogs were related to Leptospira interrogans Australis, suggesting the latter as a host-adapted bacterium, whereas mustelid species were infected by various genotypes, suggesting their interaction with Leptospira was different. By providing an inventory of the circulating strains of Leptospira and by pointing to hedgehogs as a potential reservoir of L. interrogans Australis, our study advances current knowledge on Leptospira animal carriers, and this information could serve to enhance epidemiological investigations in the future.
Ribotta, M J; Higgins, R; Gottschalk, M; Lallier, R
Serology plays an important role in the diagnosis of leptospirosis. Few laboratories have the resources, expertise, or facilities to perform the microscopic agglutination test (MAT). Thus, there is a need for a rapid and simple serological test that could be used in any diagnostic laboratory. In this study, a genus-specific, heat-stable antigenic preparation from Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona was used in an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the detection of leptospiral antibodies in dog sera. This antigenic preparation reacted with rabbit antisera against L. interrogans serovars bratislava, autumnalis, icterohaemorrhagiae and pomona and with rabbit antiserum against L. kirschneri serovar grippotyphosa. The ELISA showed a relative specificity of 95.6% with 158 dog sera which were negative at a dilution of 1:100 in the MAT for serovars pomona, bratislava, icterohaemorrhagiae, autumnalis, hardjo, and grippotyphosa. The relative sensitivity of this assay with 21 dog sera that revealed serovars MAT titres of > or =100 to different serovars was 100%. This assay is easily standardized, technically more advantageous than MAT, and uses an antigenic preparation that can be routinely prepared in large amounts. It was concluded that this ELISA is sufficiently sensitive test to be used as an initial screening test for the detection of leptospiral antibodies in canine sera, with subsequent confirmation of positive test results with the MAT. PMID:10680654
Ding, Zhuang; Wang, Hai; Wu, Dianjun; Xie, Xufeng; Lin, Tao; Fu, Yunhe; Zhang, Naisheng; Cao, Yongguo
Leptospirosis, caused by Leptospira, is one of the most important of neglected emerging zoonotic diseases that has important impacts on public health worldwide. Polyclonal antibody (pcAb) therapy is a potential method to process a series of pathogens for which there are limited determination of treatment, such as leptospirosis. First, we evaluated the efficacy of pcAb, derived from the sera of rabbits inoculated with Leptospira, against homotype (Leptospira interrogans serovar Lai) or heterotype (Leptospira interrogans serovar Autumnalis) Leptospira infection in a lethal hamster model. The pcAb treatment improved survival compared to the controls. The histopathology’s of the infected kidney, liver and lung were also examined by hematoxylin and eosin staining. Using real-time quantitative PCR, we determined that most of the leptospires in the primary organs were almost completely removed by pcAb. In the second experiment, treatments, including antibiotic, pcAb, and combination, were started immediately after occurrence of the first serious sickness mouse in any group. No significant difference in survival rate between pcAb group and antibiotic group was found, but the combination therapy group significantly improved survival rate compared to the others (P<0.05). We conclude that the rabbit pcAb treatment may cure both the homotype and the heterotype lethal Leptospira infections in hamster, and combination therapy improved survival compared to antibiotic group in the late treatment of homotype leptospirosis. PMID:28027297
Narduche, Lorena; Hamond, Camila; Martins, Gabriel M S; Medeiros, Marco A; Lilenbaum, Walter
Cryopreservation is a recognized method for the maintenance of Leptospira collections. Although cryoprotectants are commonly used in order to prevent or reduce the adverse effects of freezing, there is no consensus regarding the protocols of cryopreservation. This study aimed to compare cryopreservation protocols for Leptospira using different glycerol and dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) concentrations. Leptospira interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae, L. interrogans serovar Bratislava, and L. borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo were used as the experimental strains. For each strain, three protocols were tested using 5% and 10% glycerol and 2.5% DMSO. For each protocol, 12 tubes containing 1.5 mL of serovar were frozen at -70°C on the same day. An aliquot of each serovar/protocol was thawed once a month throughout 1 year. The viability of leptospires was evaluated by the recovery of those at days 7, 14, and 21 after thawing. Although no significant difference was found among the leptospiral recovery rates for the 9 serovar/protocols tested, DMSO (2.5%) was shown to be slightly better than glycerol, and its use should be encouraged as a cryoprotectant for leptospires.
Bourhy, Pascale; Herrmann Storck, Cécile; Theodose, Rafaelle; Olive, Claude; Nicolas, Muriel; Hochedez, Patrick; Lamaury, Isabelle; Zinini, Farida; Brémont, Sylvie; Landier, Annie; Cassadou, Sylvie; Rosine, Jacques; Picardeau, Mathieu
Background Leptospirosis is one of the most important neglected tropical bacterial diseases in Latin America and the Caribbean. However, very little is known about the circulating etiological agents of leptospirosis in this region. In this study, we describe the serological and molecular features of leptospires isolated from 104 leptospirosis patients in Guadeloupe (n = 85) and Martinique (n = 19) and six rats captured in Guadeloupe, between 2004 and 2012. Methods and Findings Strains were studied by serogrouping, PFGE, MLVA, and sequencing 16SrRNA and secY. DNA extracts from blood samples collected from 36 patients in Martinique were also used for molecular typing of leptospires via PCR. Phylogenetic analyses revealed thirteen different genotypes clustered into five main clades that corresponded to the species: L. interrogans, L. kirschneri, L. borgpetersenii, L. noguchi, and L. santarosai. We also identified L. kmetyi in at least two patients with acute leptospirosis. This is the first time, to our knowledge, that this species has been identified in humans. The most prevalent genotypes were associated with L. interrogans serovars Icterohaemorrhagiae and Copenhageni, L. kirschneri serovar Bogvere, and L. borgpetersenii serovar Arborea. We were unable to identify nine strains at the serovar level and comparison of genotyping results to the MLST database revealed new secY alleles. Conclusions The overall serovar distribution in the French West Indies was unique compared to the neighboring islands. Typing of leptospiral isolates also suggested the existence of previously undescribed serovars. PMID:23516654
Grinder, M; Krausman, P R
The health of coyotes (Canis latrans) in urban areas has not been studied. Our objectives were to assess the health of coyotes in Tucson (Arizona, USA) by determining the prevalence of antibodies to selected pathogens, estimating survival rates, and identifying sources of mortality. We drew blood from 22 coyotes to evaluate the prevalence of heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis) antigens, and antibodies to canine distemper virus (CDV), infectious canine hepatitis (ICH), canine parvovirus (CPV), and seven serovars of Leptospira interrogans. We trapped and radiocollared 19 coyotes to determine survival rates. We performed necropsies on 19 coyotes to quantify their general health, the presence of internal and external parasites, and causes of mortality. No coyotes tested positive for heartworm antigens. The prevalence of antibody to CDV, ICH, and CPV was 27, 50, and 100%, respectively. Twenty-seven percent of coyotes tested positive for one of five serovars of L. interrogans. The diseases for which coyotes in Tucson possessed antibodies appear to be enzootic in the population. The annual survival rate of coyotes was 0.72. Eleven necropsied coyotes were killed by cars, five coyotes were hit by cars, two were killed by a trapper, and the cause of death for one coyote was unknown. Coyotes in Tucson appear to be exposed to the viral, bacterial, and parasitic infections common in many coyote populations, but humans are the major source of mortality.
Matsui, Mariko; Roche, Louise; Geroult, Sophie; Soupé-Gilbert, Marie-Estelle; Monchy, Didier; Huerre, Michel; Goarant, Cyrille
Leptospirosis is caused by pathogenic spirochetes of the genus Leptospira. Humans can be infected after exposure to contaminated urine of reservoir animals, usually rodents, regarded as typical asymptomatic carriers of leptospires. In contrast, accidental hosts may present an acute form of leptospirosis with a range of clinical symptoms including the development of Acute Kidney Injury (AKI). Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is considered as a possible AKI-residual sequela but little is known about the renal pathophysiology consequent to leptospirosis infection. Herein, we studied the renal morphological alterations in relation with the regulation of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines, comparing two experimental models of chronic leptospirosis, the golden Syrian hamster that survived the infection, becoming carrier of virulent leptospires, and the OF1 mouse, a usual reservoir of the bacteria. Animals were monitored until 28 days after injection with a virulent L. borgpetersenii serogroup Ballum to assess chronic infection. Hamsters developed morphological alterations in the kidneys with tubulointerstitial nephritis and fibrosis. Grading of lesions revealed higher scores in hamsters compared to the slight alterations observed in the mouse kidneys, irrespective of the bacterial load. Interestingly, pro-fibrotic TGF-β was downregulated in mouse kidneys. Moreover, cytokines IL-1β and IL-10, and chemokines MIP-1α/CCL3 and IP-10/CXCL-10 were significantly upregulated in hamster kidneys compared to mice. These results suggest a possible maintenance of inflammatory processes in the hamster kidneys with the infiltration of inflammatory cells in response to bacterial carriage, resulting in alterations of renal tissues. In contrast, lower expression levels in mouse kidneys indicated a better regulation of the inflammatory response and possible resolution processes likely related to resistance mechanisms. PMID:27219334
GÖKMEN, Tülin GÜVEN; SOYAL, Ayben; KALAYCI, Yıldız; ÖNLEN, Cansu; KÖKSAL, Fatih
SUMMARY Leptospirosis is still one of the most important health problems in developing countries located in humid tropical and subtropical regions. Human infections are generally caused by exposure to water, soil or food contaminated with the urine of infected wild and domestic animals such as rodents and dogs. The clinical course of leptospirosis is variable and may be difficult to distinguish from many other infectious diseases. The dark-field microscopy (DFM), serology and nucleic acid amplification techniques are used to diagnose leptospirosis, however, a distinctive standard reference method is still lacking. Therefore, in this study, we aimed to determine the presence of Leptospira spp., to differentiate the pathogenic L. interrogans and the non-pathogenic L. biflexa, and also to determine the sensitivity and specificity values of molecular methods as an alternative to conventional ones. A total of 133 serum samples, from 47 humans and 86 cattle were evaluated by two conventional tests: the Microagglutination Test (MAT) and the DFM, as well as three molecular methods, the 16S rRNA-PCR followed by Restriction Fragment Lenght Polymorphism (RFLP) of the amplification products 16S rRNA-PCR-RFLP, LipL32-PCR and OmpL1-PCR. In this study, for L. interrogans, the specificity and sensitivity rates of the 16S rRNA-PCR and the LipL32-PCR were considered similar (100% versus 98.25% and 100% versus 98.68%, respectively). The OmpL1-PCR was able to classify L. interrogans into two intergroups, but this PCR was less sensitive (87.01%) than the other two PCR methods. The 16S rRNA-PCR-RFLP could detect L. biflexa DNA, but LipL32-PCR and OmpL1-PCR could not. The 16S rRNA-PCR-RFLP provided an early and accurate diagnosis and was able to distinguish pathogenic and non-pathogenic Leptospira species, hence it may be used as an alternative method to the conventional gold standard techniques for the rapid disgnosis of leptospirosis. PMID:27680169
Gese, E M; Schultz, R D; Johnson, M R; Williams, E S; Crabtree, R L; Ruff, R L
From October 1989 to June 1993, we captured and sampled 110 coyotes (Canis latrans) for various diseases in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming (USA). Prevalence of antibodies against canine parvovirus (CPV) was 100% for adults (> 24 months old), 100% for yearlings (12 to 24 months old), and 100% for old pups (4 to 12 months old); 0% of the young pups (< 3 months old) had antibodies against CPV. Presence of antibodies against canine distemper virus (CDV) was associated with the age of the coyote, with 88%, 54%, 23%, and 0% prevalence among adults, yearlings, old pups, and young pups, respectively. Prevalence of CDV antibodies declined over time from 100% in 1989 to 33% in 1992. The prevalence of canine infectious hepatitis (ICH) virus antibodies was 97%, 82%, 54%, and 33%, for adults, yearlings, old pups, and young pups, respectively. The percentage of coyotes with ICH virus antibodies also declined over time from a high of 100% in 1989 to 31% in 1992, and 42% in 1993. Prevalence of antibodies against Yersinia pestis was 86%, 33%, 80%, and 7%, for adults, yearlings, old pups, and young pups, respectively, and changed over time from 57% in 1991 to 0% in 1993. The prevalence of antibodies against Francisella tularensis was 21%, 17%, 10%, and 20%, for adults, yearlings, old pups, and young pups, respectively. No coyotes had serologic evidence of exposure to brucellosis, either Brucella abortus or Brucella canis. No coyotes were seropositive to Leptospira interrogans (serovars canicola, hardjo, and icterohemorrhagiae). Prevalence of antibodies against L. interrogans serovar pomona was 7%, 0%, 0%, and 9%, for adults, yearlings, old pups, and young pups, respectively. Antibodies against L. interrogans serovar grippotyphosa were present in 17% of adults and 0% of yearlings, old pups, and young pups. Many infectious canine pathogens (CPV, CDV, ICH virus) are prevalent in coyotes in Yellowstone National Park, with CPV influencing coyote pup survival during the first 3 months
Himsworth, Chelsea G; Parsons, Kirbee L; Jardine, Claire; Patrick, David M
Urban Norway and black rats (Rattus norvegicus and Rattus rattus) are the source of a number of pathogens responsible for significant human morbidity and mortality in cities around the world. These pathogens include zoonotic bacteria (Leptospira interrogans, Yersina pestis, Rickettsia typhi, Bartonella spp., Streptobacillus moniliformis), viruses (Seoul hantavirus), and parasites (Angiostrongylus cantonensis). A more complete understanding of the ecology of these pathogens in people and rats is critical for determining the public health risks associated with urban rats and for developing strategies to monitor and mitigate those risks. Although the ecology of rat-associated zoonoses is complex, due to the multiple ways in which rats, people, pathogens, vectors, and the environment may interact, common determinants of human disease can still be identified. This review summarizes the ecology of zoonoses associated with urban rats with a view to identifying similarities, critical differences, and avenues for further study.
Donahue, J M; Smith, B J; Redmon, K J; Donahue, J K
A study was conducted to evaluate a recently available fluorescent antibody test (FAT) conjugate for the detection of leptospires in tissues of aborted and stillborn horses, to determine the leptospira antibody titers and compare serologic test results with FAT results, and to determine the prevalence of leptospira-induced abortions and stillbirths in the equine population of central Kentucky. From July 1, 1988 through June 30, 1989, 15 (2.5%) of 594 submissions (fetuses, stillborn foals, and/or placentas) were diagnosed as leptospirosis by the FAT (14 of 15 tested) and/or microscopic agglutination test (12 of 14 tested). Of the 12 serologically positive fetal fluids, 10 had high tigers against Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona and 2 against serovar grippotyphosa.
Jorge, Sérgio; Monte, Leonardo G; Coimbra, Marco Antonio; Albano, Ana Paula; Hartwig, Daiane D; Lucas, Caroline; Seixas, Fabiana K; Dellagostin, Odir A; Hartleben, Cláudia P
Leptospirosis is a globally prevalent zoonosis caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp.; several serologic variants have reservoirs in synanthropic rodents. The capybara is the largest living rodent in the world, and it has a wide geographical distribution in Central and South America. This rodent is a significant source of Leptospira since the agent is shed via urine into the environment and is a potential public health threat. In this study, we isolated and identified by molecular techniques a pathogenic Leptospira from capybara in southern Brazil. The isolated strain was characterized by partial rpoB gene sequencing and variable-number tandem-repeats analysis as L. interrogans, serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae. In addition, to confirm the expression of virulence factors, the bacterial immunoglobulin-like proteins A and B expression was detected by indirect immunofluorescence using leptospiral specific monoclonal antibodies. This report identifies capybaras as an important source of infection and provides insight into the epidemiology of leptospirosis.
Blum Domínguez, Selene Del C; Chi Dzib, María Y; Maldonado Velázquez, María G; Nuñez Oreza, Luis A; Gómez Solano, Mónica I; Caballero Poot, Rebeca I; Tamay Segovia, Paulino
Leptospira reactivity in stray and household dogs in Campeche as well as associated risk factors to the seropositivity in household dogs have been herein determined. The survey included 323 dogs, 142 of which were stray dogs and 181 household dogs. Nine Leptospira interrogans serovars were tested by the microagglutination test. Reactivity was 21.3 % (69/323), 17.2 % corresponded to household dogs and 26.7 % to stray dogs. Leptospira Canicola (29 %), Leptospira Hardjo (22.58 %), and Leptospira Icterohaemorrhagiae (16.12 %) were the most common serovars reacting against the serum of household animals, while Leptospira Canicola (15.78 %), Leptospira icterohaemorrhagiae (13.15 %), and Leptospira Pomona (7.89 %) were those reacting in stray dogs. Results showed that all dogs have been in contact with different Leptospira serovars and outdoor exposure is the main infection risk factor.
Zheng, Huajun; Zhang, Ying; Wang, Yuezhu; Zhang, Jinlong; Li, Zhe; Cui, Shenghui; Xin, Xiaofang; Ye, Qiang; Chang, Yung-Fu; Wang, Junzhi
Leptospirosis, caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp., is recognized as an important emerging zoonotic disease throughout the world. In this study, multiple approaches were used to characterize the recently discovered serovar Heyan strain L231. This strain can infect guinea pigs and belonged to the pathogenic species L. weilii. Genome sequencing analysis revealed the draft genome of 4.2 M bp with a G+C content of 40.67% for strain L231, and a total of 4,794 ORFs were identified. The strain L231 genome was found to have a larger LPS biosynthesis locus than that of strains L. interrogans serovar Lai and L. borgpetersenii serovar Hardjobovis. Phylogenomic reconstructions showed that the evolutionary position of L. weilii serovar Heyan was different from that of other serovars from serogroup Manhao. These findings may lead us to a better understanding of Leptospira pathogenesis and evolution. PMID:28210253
Peláez Sanchez, Ronald Guillermo; Lopez, Juan Álvaro; Pereira, Martha María; Arboleda Naranjo, Margarita; Agudelo-Flórez, Piedad
The region of Antioquia in northeastern Colombia has the highest number of reported leptospirosis cases in the country. It also shows high seroprevalence indexes in the general population and socio-environmental conditions favourable for the transmission of the disease between humans and animals. In this study, 25 Leptospira isolates from Colombia’s Antioquia department were identified to the species level as L. santarosai (12), L. interrogans (9) and L. meyeri (4) using phylogenetic analysis of the Amidohydrolase gene. Typing at the serovar level was performed using multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and monoclonal antibodies. The serovars Canalzonae, Babudieri, Alice, Beye, and Copenhageni have been identified as causing human or animal infections in Antioquia, Colombia. The four environmental isolates were not identified to the serovar level. L. santarosai serovar Canalzonae and Alice were identified as new etiologic agents of human leptospirosis in Antioquia, Colombia. This paper reports species and serovars that were previously unknown in the region. PMID:27982303
Peláez Sanchez, Ronald Guillermo; Lopez, Juan Álvaro; Pereira, Martha María; Arboleda Naranjo, Margarita; Agudelo-Flórez, Piedad
The region of Antioquia in northeastern Colombia has the highest number of reported leptospirosis cases in the country. It also shows high seroprevalence indexes in the general population and socio-environmental conditions favourable for the transmission of the disease between humans and animals. In this study, 25 Leptospira isolates from Colombia's Antioquia department were identified to the species level as L. santarosai (12), L. interrogans (9) and L. meyeri (4) using phylogenetic analysis of the Amidohydrolase gene. Typing at the serovar level was performed using multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and monoclonal antibodies. The serovars Canalzonae, Babudieri, Alice, Beye, and Copenhageni have been identified as causing human or animal infections in Antioquia, Colombia. The four environmental isolates were not identified to the serovar level. L. santarosai serovar Canalzonae and Alice were identified as new etiologic agents of human leptospirosis in Antioquia, Colombia. This paper reports species and serovars that were previously unknown in the region.
Hartwig, Daiane D; Bacelo, Kátia L; Oliveira, Thaís L; Schuch, Rodrigo; Seixas, Fabiana K; Collares, Tiago; Rodrigues, Oscar; Hartleben, Cláudia P; Dellagostin, Odir A
We studied the feasibility of using halloysite clay nanotubes (HNTs) and carboxyl-functionalised multi-walled carbon nanotubes (COOH-MWCNTs) as antigen carriers to improve immune responses against a recombinant LipL32 protein (rLipL32). Immunisation using the HNTs or COOH-MWCNTs significantly increased the rLipL32-specific IgG antibody titres (p < 0.05) of Golden Syrian hamsters. None of the vaccines tested conferred protection against a challenge using a virulent Leptospira interrogans strain. These results demonstrated that nanotubes can be used as antigen carriers for delivery in hosts and the induction of a humoral immune response against purified leptospiral antigens used in subunit vaccine preparations.
Zanzani, Sergio A; Di Cerbo, Annarita; Gazzonis, Alessia L; Epis, Sara; Invernizzi, Anna; Tagliabue, Silvia; Manfredi, Maria T
Coypus (Myocastor coypus) are widespread throughout Europe. In northern Italy, they are abundant in the flatland areas, and their high population densities can cause economic loss and ecosystem damage. We examined 153 coypus for selected parasitic and bacterial infections. We found Strongyloides myopotami (63.4% prevalence), Trichostrongylus duretteae (28.1%), Eimeria coypi (86.3%), and Eimeria seideli (6.8%), but did not find Giardia duodenalis or Cryptosporidium spp. We also isolated Staphylococcus aureus (10.1%), Escherichia coli (4.5%), and Streptococcus spp. (3.4%) from lung samples; no Salmonella spp. were isolated from fecal samples. Coypus had antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii (28.9%) and to four serovars of Leptospira interrogans (44.9%); Australis/Bratislava was the serovar most frequently detected. It is clear that coypu can be infected with pathogens of human and veterinary importance.
Villanueva, Sharon Y. A. M.; Ezoe, Hirokazu; Baterna, Rubelia A.; Yanagihara, Yasutake; Muto, Maki; Koizumi, Nobuo; Fukui, Takashi; Okamoto, Yoshihiro; Masuzawa, Toshiyuki; Cavinta, Lolita L.; Gloriani, Nina G.; Yoshida, Shin-ichi
Rats are known to be the most important reservoirs and transmission sources of leptospirosis. However, the status of leptospirosis in the Philippines regarding reservoirs and transmission remains unknown. A survey was conducted in Metro Manila and Laguna that analyzed samples obtained from 106 rats. Using the microscopic agglutination test, we found that 92% of rat serum samples were positive for anti-Leptospira antibodies; the most common infecting serovars were Manilae, Hebdomadis, and Losbanos. On the basis of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and gyrase B gene sequence analyses, four groups of rat kidney isolates were found: L. interrogans serovar Manilae, serovar Losbanos, and serogroup Grippotyphosa, and L. borgpetersenii serogroup Javanica. Most isolates were lethal after experimental infection of golden Syrian hamsters. Results showed that these four Leptospira serovars and serogroups are circulating among rats, and that these animals may be one of the possible transmission sources of leptospirosis in the Philippines. PMID:20439972
Lloyd-Smith, James O; Greig, Denise J; Hietala, Sharon; Ghneim, George S; Palmer, Lauren; St Leger, Judy; Grenfell, Bryan T; Gulland, Frances MD
Background Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease infecting a broad range of mammalian hosts, and is re-emerging globally. California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) have experienced recurrent outbreaks of leptospirosis since 1970, but it is unknown whether the pathogen persists in the sea lion population or is introduced repeatedly from external reservoirs. Methods We analyzed serum samples collected over an 11-year period from 1344 California sea lions that stranded alive on the California coast, using the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) for antibodies to Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona. We evaluated seroprevalence among yearlings as a measure of incidence in the population, and characterized antibody persistence times based on temporal changes in the distribution of titer scores. We conducted multinomial logistic regression to determine individual risk factors for seropositivity with high and low titers. Results The serosurvey revealed cyclical patterns in seroprevalence to L. interrogans serovar Pomona, with 4–5 year periodicity and peak seroprevalence above 50%. Seroprevalence in yearling sea lions was an accurate index of exposure among all age classses, and indicated on-going exposure to leptospires in non-outbreak years. Analysis of titer decay rates showed that some individuals probably maintain high titers for more than a year following exposure. Conclusion This study presents results of an unprecedented long-term serosurveillance program in marine mammals. Our results suggest that leptospirosis is endemic in California sea lions, but also causes periodic epidemics of acute disease. The findings call into question the classical dichotomy between maintenance hosts of leptospirosis, which experience chronic but largely asymptomatic infections, and accidental hosts, which suffer acute illness or death as a result of disease spillover from reservoir species. PMID:17986335
Colagross-Schouten, Angela M; Mazet, Jonna A K; Gulland, Frances M D; Miller, Melissa A; Hietala, Sharon
The sensitivity and specificity of the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) as a method for detection of exposure to Leptospira spp. in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) were determined. Sera came from individuals that demonstrated clinical signs of renal disease, had lesions suggestive of leptospirosis at necropsy, and had visible leptospires in silver stained kidney sections as positive controls. Sera from unexposed captive individuals were used as negative controls. The test was 100% sensitive at 1:3,200 for confirming renal infection and 100% specific at negative < 1:100 for detection of Leptospira interrogans scrovar pomona antibodies by MAT in California sea lions. Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona was used as a screening serovar because it has been isolated previously from the kidneys and placentas of California sea lions, and there appears to be cross-reactivity between serovar pomona and other serovars. Sera from 225 free-ranging California sea lions presented to one of three participating California (USA) coastal marine mammal rehabilitation centers in 1996 were then evaluated for antibodies to serovar pomona using the MAT. The overall seroprevalence was 38.2% (86/225), although the prevalence varied among locations from 100% (38/38) in animals at the Marine Mammal Care Center (Fort MacArthur, California, USA) to 0% (0/14) at SeaWorld California (San Diego, California). At The Marine Mammal Center (Sausalito, California) [prevalence 27.8% (48/173)], the majority of seropositive animals were subadults and adults, and males were 4.7 times more likely to be seropositive to serovar pomona than females. When combining results from all three centers, subadult and adult animals were more likely to be seropositive than pups and juvenile sea lions, and the highest proportion of seropositive animals presented during the autumn months. Serum elevations of blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, phosphorus, and/or calcium were associated with seropositivity
Selengut, Jeremy D.; Harkins, Derek M.; Patra, Kailash P.; Moreno, Angelo; Lehmann, Jason S.; Purushe, Janaki; Sanka, Ravi; Torres, Michael; Webster, Nicholas J.; Vinetz, Joseph M.; Matthias, Michael A.
The whole genome analysis of two strains of the first intermediately pathogenic leptospiral species to be sequenced (Leptospira licerasiae strains VAR010 and MMD0835) provides insight into their pathogenic potential and deepens our understanding of leptospiral evolution. Comparative analysis of eight leptospiral genomes shows the existence of a core leptospiral genome comprising 1547 genes and 452 conserved genes restricted to infectious species (including L. licerasiae) that are likely to be pathogenicity-related. Comparisons of the functional content of the genomes suggests that L. licerasiae retains several proteins related to nitrogen, amino acid and carbohydrate metabolism which might help to explain why these Leptospira grow well in artificial media compared with pathogenic species. L. licerasiae strains VAR010T and MMD0835 possess two prophage elements. While one element is circular and shares homology with LE1 of L. biflexa, the second is cryptic and homologous to a previously identified but unnamed region in L. interrogans serovars Copenhageni and Lai. We also report a unique O-antigen locus in L. licerasiae comprised of a 6-gene cluster that is unexpectedly short compared with L. interrogans in which analogous regions may include >90 such genes. Sequence homology searches suggest that these genes were acquired by lateral gene transfer (LGT). Furthermore, seven putative genomic islands ranging in size from 5 to 36 kb are present also suggestive of antecedent LGT. How Leptospira become naturally competent remains to be determined, but considering the phylogenetic origins of the genes comprising the O-antigen cluster and other putative laterally transferred genes, L. licerasiae must be able to exchange genetic material with non-invasive environmental bacteria. The data presented here demonstrate that L. licerasiae is genetically more closely related to pathogenic than to saprophytic Leptospira and provide insight into the genomic bases for its infectiousness
Karnath, Carolin; Silaghi, Cornelia; Schex, Susanne; Eßbauer, Sandra; Pfeffer, Martin
Small mammals serve as most important reservoirs for Leptospira spp., the causative agents of Leptospirosis, which is one of the most neglected and widespread zoonotic diseases worldwide. The knowledge about Leptospira spp. occurring in small mammals from Germany is scarce. Thus, this study’s objectives were to investigate the occurrence of Leptospira spp. and the inherent sequence types in small mammals from three different study sites: a forest in southern Germany (site B1); a National Park in south-eastern Germany (site B2) and a renaturalised area, in eastern Germany (site S) where small mammals were captured. DNA was extracted from kidneys of small mammals and tested for Leptospira spp. by real-time PCR. Positive samples were further analysed by duplex and conventional PCRs. For 14 positive samples, multi locus sequence typing (MLST) was performed. Altogether, 1213 small mammals were captured: 216 at site B1, 456 at site B2 and 541 at site S belonging to following species: Sorex (S.) araneus, S. coronatus, Apodemus (A.) flavicollis, Myodes glareolus, Microtus (Mi.) arvalis, Crocidura russula, Arvicola terrestris, A. agrarius, Mustela nivalis, Talpa europaea, and Mi. agrestis. DNA of Leptospira spp. was detected in 6% of all small mammals. At site B1, 25 small mammals (11.6%), at site B2, 15 small mammals (3.3%) and at site S, 33 small mammals (6.1%) were positive for Leptospira spp. Overall, 54 of the positive samples were further determined as L. kirschneri, nine as L. interrogans and four as L. borgpetersenii while five real-time PCR-positive samples could not be further determined by conventional PCR. MLST results revealed focal occurrence of L. interrogans and L. kirschneri sequence type (ST) 117 while L. kirschneri ST 110 was present in small mammals at all three sites. Further, this study provides evidence for a particular host association of L. borgpetersenii to mice of the genus Apodemus. PMID:27015596
Medici, Emília Patrícia; Mangini, Paulo Rogerio; Fernandes-Santos, Renata Carolina
Abstract The lowland tapir (Tapirus terrestris) is found in South America and is listed as Vulnerable to Extinction by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Red List of Threatened Species. Health issues, particularly infectious diseases, are potential threats for the species. Health information from 65 wild tapirs from two Brazilian biomes, Atlantic Forest (AF) and Pantanal (PA), were collected during a long-term study (1996-2012). The study included physic, hematologic and biochemical evaluations, microbiologic cultures, urinalysis, and serologic analyses for antibodies against 13 infectious agents (viral and bacterial). The AF and PA tapirs were significantly different for several hematologic and biochemical parameters. Ten bacteria taxa were identified in the AF and 26 in the PA. Antibodies against five viruses were detected: Bluetongue virus, eastern equine encephalitis virus, western equine encephalitis virus, infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus, and porcine parvovirus. A high prevalence of exposure to Leptospira interrogans (10 serovars: Autumnalis, Bratislava, Canicola, Copenhageni, Grippotyphosa, Hardjo, Hebdomadis, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Pomona, and Pyrogenes) was detected in both the AF and PA sites. A greater diversity of serovars and higher antibody titers were found in the PA. Statistically significant differences between sites were found for L. interrogans, equine encephalitis virus, and porcine parvovirus. Based on physical evaluations, both AF and PA populations were healthy. The differences in the overall health profile of the AF and PA tapir populations appear to be associated with environmental factors and infectious diseases ecology. The extensive datasets on hematology, biochemistry, urinalysis, and microbiology results from this paper can be used as reference values for wild tapirs.
Millán, Javier; Candela, Mónica G; Palomares, Francisco; Cubero, María José; Rodríguez, Alejandro; Barral, Marta; de la Fuente, José; Almería, Sonia; León-Vizcaíno, Luis
The Iberian lynx, (Lynx pardinus), is the most endangered felid in the world. To determine whether sympatric carnivores are reservoirs of pathogens posing a disease risk for the lynx, evidence of exposure to 17 viral, bacterial and protozoan agents was investigated in 176 carnivores comprising 26 free-living lynx, 53 domestic cats, 28 dogs, 33 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), 24 Egyptian mongooses (Herpestes ichneumon), 10 common genets (Genetta genetta) and 2 Eurasian badgers (Meles meles) in the areas inhabited by the last two populations of Iberian lynx, both in Andalusia (South-Western Spain). The results indicated that the lynx had low rates of contact with viral pathogens, with one seropositive finding each for feline leukemia virus, parvovirus and canine adenovirus-1, whereas contact with bacteria and protozoa appeared more frequent. Active infections with parvovirus, Ehrlichia spp., Mycobacterium bovis, Leptospira interrogans and Cytauxzoon spp. were confirmed. In contrast, 53% of the domestic cats were exposed to some infectious agent (prevalence range 4.5-11.4%). Antibodies to canine distemper virus and parvovirus were frequently found in dogs (32% and 42%, respectively) and foxes (30% and 12%). Past or present infections with parvovirus, Ehrlichia spp., Chlamydophila spp., M. bovis, Salmonella enterica, L. interrogans, Toxoplasma gondii, and Neospora caninum were also detected in these and other species surveyed. Questionnaires to owners revealed that 14% of the dogs but none of the cats had been vaccinated, and no cat had been neutered. Based on the apparent absence of acquired immunity of the lynx against infectious agents, the frequent detection of agents among sympatric carnivores, and the reported lack of immunocompetence of the Iberian lynx, a disease outbreak among the local abundant carnivores may pose a serious disease risk for lynx conservation.
Obiegala, Anna; Woll, Dietlinde; Karnath, Carolin; Silaghi, Cornelia; Schex, Susanne; Eßbauer, Sandra; Pfeffer, Martin
Small mammals serve as most important reservoirs for Leptospira spp., the causative agents of Leptospirosis, which is one of the most neglected and widespread zoonotic diseases worldwide. The knowledge about Leptospira spp. occurring in small mammals from Germany is scarce. Thus, this study's objectives were to investigate the occurrence of Leptospira spp. and the inherent sequence types in small mammals from three different study sites: a forest in southern Germany (site B1); a National Park in south-eastern Germany (site B2) and a renaturalised area, in eastern Germany (site S) where small mammals were captured. DNA was extracted from kidneys of small mammals and tested for Leptospira spp. by real-time PCR. Positive samples were further analysed by duplex and conventional PCRs. For 14 positive samples, multi locus sequence typing (MLST) was performed. Altogether, 1213 small mammals were captured: 216 at site B1, 456 at site B2 and 541 at site S belonging to following species: Sorex (S.) araneus, S. coronatus, Apodemus (A.) flavicollis, Myodes glareolus, Microtus (Mi.) arvalis, Crocidura russula, Arvicola terrestris, A. agrarius, Mustela nivalis, Talpa europaea, and Mi. agrestis. DNA of Leptospira spp. was detected in 6% of all small mammals. At site B1, 25 small mammals (11.6%), at site B2, 15 small mammals (3.3%) and at site S, 33 small mammals (6.1%) were positive for Leptospira spp. Overall, 54 of the positive samples were further determined as L. kirschneri, nine as L. interrogans and four as L. borgpetersenii while five real-time PCR-positive samples could not be further determined by conventional PCR. MLST results revealed focal occurrence of L. interrogans and L. kirschneri sequence type (ST) 117 while L. kirschneri ST 110 was present in small mammals at all three sites. Further, this study provides evidence for a particular host association of L. borgpetersenii to mice of the genus Apodemus.
Wuthiekanun, Vanaporn; Amornchai, Premjit; Paris, Daniel H.; Langla, Sayan; Thaipadunpanit, Janjira; Chierakul, Wirongrong; Smythe, Lee D.; White, Nicholas J.; Day, Nicholas P. J.; Peacock, Sharon J.
Pathogenic Leptospira spp., the causative agents of leptospirosis, are slow-growing Gram-negative spirochetes. Isolation of Leptospira from clinical samples and testing of antimicrobial susceptibility are difficult and time-consuming. Here, we describe the development of a new solid medium that facilitates more-rapid growth of Leptospira spp. and the use of this medium to evaluate the Etest's performance in determining antimicrobial MICs to drugs in common use for leptospirosis. The medium was developed by evaluating the effects of numerous factors on the growth rate of Leptospira interrogans strain NR-20157. These included the type of base agar, the concentration of rabbit serum (RS), and the concentration and duration of CO2 incubation during the initial period of culture. The highest growth rate of NR-20157 was achieved using a Noble agar base supplemented with 10% RS (named LVW agar), with an initial incubation at 30°C in 5% CO2 for 2 days prior to continuous culture in air at 30°C. These conditions were used to develop the Etest for three species, L. interrogans (NR-20161), L. kirschnerii (NR-20327), and L. borgpetersenii (NR-20151). The MICs were read on day 7 for all samples. The Etest was then performed on 109 isolates of pathogenic Leptospira spp. The MIC90 values for penicillin G, doxycycline, cefotaxime, ceftriaxone, and chloramphenicol were 0.64 units/ml and 0.19, 0.047, 0.5, and 2 μg/ml, respectively. The use of LVW agar, which enables rapid growth, isolation of single colonies, and simple antimicrobial susceptibility testing for Leptospira spp., provides an opportunity for new areas of fundamental and applied research. PMID:23114772
Gaydos, Joseph K; Conrad, Patricia A; Gilardi, Kirsten V K; Blundell, Gail M; Ben-David, Merav
The investigation of diseases of free-ranging river otters (Lontra canadensis) is a primary conservation priority for this species; however, very little is known about diseases of river otters that forage in marine environments. To identify and better understand pathogens that could be important to marine-foraging river otters, other wildlife species, domestic animals, and humans and to determine if proximity to human population could be a factor in disease exposure, serum samples from 55 free-ranging marine-foraging river otters were tested for antibodies to selected pathogens. Thirty-five animals were captured in Prince William Sound, Alaska (USA), an area of low human density, and 20 were captured in the San Juan Islands, Washington State (USA), an area characterized by higher human density. Of 40 river otters tested by indirect immunofluorescent antibody test, 17.5% were seropositive (titer > or =320) for Toxoplasma gondii. All positive animals came from Washington. Of 35 river otters tested for antibodies to Leptospira interrogans using the microscopic agglutination test, 10 of 20 (50%) from Washington were seropositive (titer > or =200). None of the 15 tested animals from Alaska were positive. Antibodies to Neospora caninum (n=40), Sarcocystis neurona (n=40), Brucella abortus (n=55), avian influenza (n=40), canine distemper virus (n=55), phocine distemper virus (n=55), dolphin morbillivirus (n=55), porpoise morbillivirus (n=55), and Aleutian disease parvovirus (n=46) were not detected. Identifying exposure to T. gondii and L. interrogans in otters from Washington State but not in otters from Alaska suggests that living proximal to higher human density and its associated agricultural activities, domestic animals, and rodent populations could enhance river otter exposure to these pathogens.
Assenga, Justine A.; Matemba, Lucas E.; Muller, Shabani K.; Mhamphi, Ginethon G.; Kazwala, Rudovick R.
Background Leptospirosis is a worldwide zoonotic disease and a serious, under-reported public health problem, particularly in rural areas of Tanzania. In the Katavi-Rukwa ecosystem, humans, livestock and wildlife live in close proximity, which exposes them to the risk of a number of zoonotic infectious diseases, including leptospirosis. Methodology/Principal Findings A cross-sectional epidemiological study was carried out in the Katavi region, South-west Tanzania, to determine the seroprevalence of Leptospira spp in humans, domestic ruminants and wildlife. Blood samples were collected from humans (n = 267), cattle (n = 1,103), goats (n = 248), buffaloes (n = 38), zebra (n = 2), lions (n = 2), rodents (n = 207) and shrews (n = 11). Decanted sera were tested using the Microscopic Agglutination Test (MAT) for antibodies against six live serogroups belonging to the Leptospira spp, with a cutoff point of ≥ 1:160. The prevalence of leptospiral antibodies was 29.96% in humans, 30.37% in cattle, 8.47% in goats, 28.95% in buffaloes, 20.29% in rodents and 9.09% in shrews. Additionally, one of the two samples in lions was seropositive. A significant difference in the prevalence P<0.05 was observed between cattle and goats. No significant difference in prevalence was observed with respect to age and sex in humans or any of the sampled animal species. The most prevalent serogroups with antibodies of Leptospira spp were Sejroe, Hebdomadis, Grippotyphosa, Icterohaemorrhagie and Australis, which were detected in humans, cattle, goats and buffaloes; Sejroe and Grippotyphosa, which were detected in a lion; Australis, Icterohaemorrhagie and Grippotyphosa, which were detected in rodents; and Australis, which was detected in shrews. Antibodies to serogroup Ballum were detected only in humans. Conclusions The results of this study demonstrate that leptospiral antibodies are widely prevalent in humans, livestock and wildlife from the Katavi-Rukwa ecosystem. The disease poses a serious
Kutsuna, Satoshi; Kato, Yasuyuki; Koizumi, Nobuo; Yamamoto, Kei; Fujiya, Yoshihiro; Mawatari, Momoko; Takeshita, Nozomi; Hayakawa, Kayoko; Kanagawa, Shuzo; Ohmagari, Norio
Leptospirosis is one of the most common travel-related infections. We report 5 cases of travel-related leptospirosis who presented at our clinic between January 2008 and December 2013. Patients were included in the study if they presented with a clinical profile that was compatible with the disease within 21 days of their return from traveling, which were laboratory-diagnosed as leptospirosis by blood culture, rise in antibody titers in paired sera using the microscopic agglutination test (MAT), and/or DNA detection using flaB-nested PCR. Five leptospirosis cases were evaluated, all of which contracted the disease after exposure to fresh water in Southeast Asian countries. All of the cases had fevers, headaches, conjunctival injections, and relative bradycardia. The pertinent laboratory findings included elevated C-reactive protein levels, elevated creatinine levels, and sterile pyuria. All 5 cases had serum MAT titers that increased by ≥ 4 times in the interval between specimens taken during the acute phase and those taken during the convalescence phase, and leptospiral DNA was detected in plasma and/or urine specimens in 4 cases. Leptospira interrogans was isolated from one patient's blood sample. Patients were treated with penicillin G, minocycline, or doxycycline. One case was cured without antibiotics. A diagnosis of leptospirosis should be considered for febrile travelers who return from Southeast Asian countries to Japan after being exposed to freshwater while traveling.
Loffler, Sylvia Grune; Pavan, Maria Elisa; Vanasco, Bibiana; Samartino, Luis; Suarez, Olga; Auteri, Carmelo; Romero, Graciela; Brihuega, Bibiana
Leptospirosis is the most widespread zoonosis in the world and significant efforts have been made to determine and classify pathogenic Leptospira strains. This zoonosis is maintained in nature through chronic renal infections of carrier animals, with rodents and other small mammals serving as the most important reservoirs. Additionally, domestic animals, such as livestock and dogs, are significant sources of human infection. In this study, a multiple-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) was applied to genotype 22 pathogenic Leptospira strains isolated from urban and periurban rodent populations from different regions of Argentina. Three MLVA profiles were identified in strains belonging to the species Leptospira interrogans (serovars Icterohaemorrhagiae and Canicola); one profile was observed in serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae and two MLVA profiles were observed in isolates of serovars Canicola and Portlandvere. All strains belonging to Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Castellonis exhibited the same MLVA profile. Four different genotypes were isolated from urban populations of rodents, including both mice and rats and two different genotypes were isolated from periurban populations. PMID:24676656
Loffler, Sylvia Grune; Pavan, Maria Elisa; Vanasco, Bibiana; Samartino, Luis; Suarez, Olga; Auteri, Carmelo; Romero, Graciela; Brihuega, Bibiana
Leptospirosis is the most widespread zoonosis in the world and significant efforts have been made to determine and classify pathogenic Leptospira strains. This zoonosis is maintained in nature through chronic renal infections of carrier animals, with rodents and other small mammals serving as the most important reservoirs. Additionally, domestic animals, such as livestock and dogs, are significant sources of human infection. In this study, a multiple-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) was applied to genotype 22 pathogenic Leptospira strains isolated from urban and periurban rodent populations from different regions of Argentina. Three MLVA profiles were identified in strains belonging to the species Leptospira interrogans (serovars Icterohaemorrhagiae and Canicola); one profile was observed in serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae and two MLVA profiles were observed in isolates of serovars Canicola and Portlandvere. All strains belonging to Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Castellonis exhibited the same MLVA profile. Four different genotypes were isolated from urban populations of rodents, including both mice and rats and two different genotypes were isolated from periurban populations.
Wu, Qingzhong; Prager, Katherine C; Goldstein, Tracey; Alt, David P; Galloway, Renee L; Zuerner, Richard L; Lloyd-Smith, James O; Schwacke, Lori
Several real-time PCR assays are currently used for detection of pathogenic Leptospira spp.; however, few methods have been described for the successful evaluation of clinical urine samples. This study reports a rapid assay for the detection of pathogenic Leptospira spp. in California sea lions Zalophus californianus using real-time PCR with primers and a probe targeting the lipL32 gene. The PCR assay had high analytic sensitivity-the limit of detection was 3 genome copies per PCR volume using L. interrogans serovar Pomona DNA and 100% analytic specificity; it detected all pathogenic leptospiral serovars tested and none of the non-pathogenic Leptospira species (L. biflexa and L. meyeri serovar Semaranga), the intermediate species L. inadai, or the non-Leptospira pathogens tested. Our assay had an amplification efficiency of 1.00. Comparisons between the real-time PCR assay and culture isolation for detection of pathogenic Leptospira spp. in urine and kidney tissue samples from California sea lions showed that samples were more often positive by real-time PCR than by culture methods. Inclusion of an internal amplification control in the real-time PCR assay showed no inhibitory effects in PCR negative samples. These studies indicated that our real-time PCR assay has high analytic sensitivity and specificity for the rapid detection of pathogenic Leptospira species in urine and kidney tissue samples.
Huang, Kailong; Zhang, Xu-Xiang; Shi, Peng; Wu, Bing; Ren, Hongqiang
In order to comprehensively investigate bacterial virulence in drinking water, 454 pyrosequencing and Illumina high-throughput sequencing were used to detect potential pathogenic bacteria and virulence factors (VFs) in a full-scale drinking water treatment and distribution system. 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing revealed high bacterial diversity in the drinking water (441-586 operational taxonomic units). Bacterial diversity decreased after chlorine disinfection, but increased after pipeline distribution. α-Proteobacteria was the most dominant taxonomic class. Alignment against the established pathogen database showed that several types of putative pathogens were present in the drinking water and Pseudomonas aeruginosa had the highest abundance (over 11‰ of total sequencing reads). Many pathogens disappeared after chlorine disinfection, but P. aeruginosa and Leptospira interrogans were still detected in the tap water. High-throughput sequencing revealed prevalence of various pathogenicity islands and virulence proteins in the drinking water, and translocases, transposons, Clp proteases and flagellar motor switch proteins were the predominant VFs. Both diversity and abundance of the detectable VFs increased after the chlorination, and decreased after the pipeline distribution. This study indicates that joint use of 454 pyrosequencing and Illumina sequencing can comprehensively characterize environmental pathogenesis, and several types of putative pathogens and various VFs are prevalent in drinking water.
Miller, Michael R.; Miller, Kelly A.; Bian, Jiang; James, Milinda E.; Zhang, Sheng; Lynch, Michael; Callery, Patrick S.; Hettick, Justin M.; Cockburn, Andrew; Liu, Jun; Li, Chunhao; Crane, Brian R.; Charon, Nyles W.
Spirochetes are bacteria responsible for several serious diseases that include Lyme disease (Borrelia burgdorferi), syphilis (Treponema pallidum), leptospirosis (Leptospira interrogans), and contribute to periodontal diseases (Treponema denticola)1. These spirochetes employ an unusual form of flagella-based motility necessary for pathogenicity; indeed, spirochete flagella (periplasmic flagella, PFs) reside and rotate within the periplasmic space2–11. The universal joint or hook that links the rotary motor to the filament is composed of approximately 120–130 FlgE proteins, which in spirochetes form an unusually stable, high-molecular weight complex (HMWC)9,12–17. In other bacteria, the hook can be readily dissociated by treatments such as heat18. In contrast, spirochete hooks are resistant to these treatments, and several lines of evidence indicate that the HMWC is the consequence of covalent cross-linking12,13,17. Here we show that T. denticola FlgE self-catalyzes an interpeptide cross-linking reaction between conserved lysine and cysteine resulting in the formation of an unusual lysinoalanine adduct that polymerizes the hook subunits. Lysinoalanine cross-links are not needed for flagellar assembly, but they are required for cell motility, and hence infection. The self-catalytic nature of FlgE cross-linking has important implications for protein engineering, and its sensitivity to chemical inhibitors provides a new avenue for the development of antimicrobials targeting spirochetes. PMID:27670115
Dreyfus, Anou; Benschop, Jackie; Collins-Emerson, Julie; Wilson, Peter; Baker, Michael G.; Heuer, Cord
Leptospirosis is an important occupational disease in New Zealand. The objectives of this study were to determine risk factors for sero-prevalence of leptospiral antibodies in abattoir workers. Sera were collected from 567 abattoir workers and tested by microscopic agglutination for Leptospira interrogans sv. Pomona and Leptospira borgpetersenii sv. Hardjobovis. Association between prevalence and risk factors were determined by species specific multivariable analysis. Eleven percent of workers had antibodies against Hardjobovis or/and Pomona. Workers from the four sheep abattoirs had an average sero-prevalence of 10%–31%, from the two deer abattoirs 17%–19% and the two beef abattoirs 5%. The strongest risk factor for sero-positivity in sheep and deer abattoirs was work position. In sheep abattoirs, prevalence was highest at stunning and hide removal, followed by removal of the bladder and kidneys. Wearing personal protective equipment such as gloves and facemasks did not appear to protect against infection. Home slaughtering, farming or hunting were not significantly associated with sero-prevalence. There is substantial risk of exposure to leptospires in sheep and deer abattoirs in New Zealand and a persisting, but lower risk, in beef abattoirs. Interventions, such as animal vaccination, appear necessary to control leptospirosis as an occupational disease in New Zealand. PMID:24503973
Escamilla, H. Patricia; Martínez, M. José Juan; Medina, C. Mario; Morales, S. Elizabeth
The objective of this study was to determine the frequency of infectious bovine abortion and to identify some of its causes, specifically brucellosis, leptospirosis, bovine viral diarrhea, infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, and neosporosis. The study was carried out in a dairy herd in the state of Queretaro, Mexico, between September 2002 and March 2003. At the beginning of the study, blood samples were taken from a random 33% of the 300 lactating or pregnant cows; antibodies against Leptospira interrogans were the most commonly identified, in 91% of the 99 samples. Blood samples were also taken 14 to 28 d after the 26 subsequent abortions in the herd in the 6-mo study period, as well as from 22 cows that had not aborted within 5 d after the abortions in the other group. Seroconversion was most frequent for L. hardjo, occurring in 8 (67%) of the 12 dams that aborted after the initial serologic sampling and for which paired serum samples were therefore available. Of the 16 collected fetuses, 10 had histologic lesions suggesting infection in various organs, the features correlating with the serologic results for the dams in 7 cases. Thus, the abortions may have been caused by more than 1 infectious agent. PMID:17955907
Kumar, K Vinod; Lall, Chandan; Raj, R Vimal; Vedhagiri, K; Vijayachari, P
Pathogenic Leptospira spp. represent one cause of leptospirosis worldwide and have long been regarded as solitary organisms in soil and aquatic environments. However, in the present study, Leptospira interrogans was observed to be associated with environmental biofilms with 21 bacterial isolates belonging to 10 genera. All 21 isolates were examined for their coaggregation and biofilm-forming ability with leptospires in vitro. Among these, Azospirillum brasilense RMRCPB showed maximum interspecies coaggregation with leptospiral strains (>75%, visual score of +4). Other significant coaggregating isolates belonged to the genera Sphingomonas, Micrococcus, Brevundimonas, Acinetobacter and Paracoccus. Biofilms of leptospires in combination with A. brasilense RMRCPB showed high resistance to penicillin G, ampicillin and tetracycline (minimum bactericidal concentration ≥800 μg/mL) and tolerance to UV radiation and high temperature (up to 49°C). This study hypothesized that biofilm formation with A. brasilense protects the pathogenic Leptospira from adverse environmental conditions/stress. This coexistence of pathogenic Leptospira with other bacteria may be the key factor for its persistence and survival. However, the mechanism of biofilm formation by leptospires needs to be explored to help devise an appropriate control strategy and reduce transmission of leptospires.
Kingscote, B. F.
Leptospirosis occurred in two veterinarians in Alberta, following their exposure to leptospires of domestic animal origin. The disease at onset resembled “flu” with fever, muscle and joint pain, and lassitude. It progressed through an extremely debilitating period with mild to severe hepatic and renal dysfunction, icterus and hemorrhage in one case, and cerebral meningitis in the other. Both patients were hospitalized for 11 to 14 days, where they responded to supportive and specific antibiotic and steroid therapy (penicillin G 106 IU q.i.d. and steroids, or tetracycline 500 mg q.i.d.). Diagnosis rested in one case on clinical signs and the observation of leptospires in blood and urine. In the other case, a tentative diagnosis of leptospirosis based on history and clinical signs was confirmed by serological test results and by the isolation of Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona from the patient's blood on day 6. Current occurrences of leptospirosis in man are reviewed. Convenient diagnostic methods, treatment and behavioural sequellae of leptospirosis are discussed. PMID:17422627
Standley, W.G.; McCue, P.M.
Hematology, serum chemistry, and prevalence of antibodies against selected, pathogens in a San Joaquin kit fox population (Vulpes velox macrotis) were investigated at Camp Roberts Army National Guard Training Site, California, in 1989 and 1990. Samples from 18 (10 female, 8 male) adult kit foxes were used to establish normal hematology and serum chemistry values for this population. Average values were all within the normal ranges reported for kit foxes in other locations. Three hematology parameters had significant differences between male and female values; males had higher total white blood cell and neutrophil counts, and lower lymphocyte counts. There were no significant differences between serum chemistry values from male and female foxes. Prevalence of antibodies was determined from serum samples from 47 (26 female, 21 male) adult kit foxes and eight (4 female, 4 male) juveniles. Antibodies were detected against five of the eight pathogens tested: canine parvovirus, Toxoplasma gondii Leptospira interrogans, canine distemper virus, and canine hepatitis virus. Antibodies were not detected against Brucella, canis, Coccidioides immitis, or Yersinia pestis.
Miller, Michael R; Miller, Kelly A; Bian, Jiang; James, Milinda E; Zhang, Sheng; Lynch, Michael J; Callery, Patrick S; Hettick, Justin M; Cockburn, Andrew; Liu, Jun; Li, Chunhao; Crane, Brian R; Charon, Nyles W
Spirochaetes are bacteria responsible for several serious diseases, including Lyme disease (Borrelia burgdorferi), syphilis (Treponema pallidum) and leptospirosis (Leptospira interrogans), and contribute to periodontal diseases (Treponema denticola)(1). These spirochaetes employ an unusual form of flagella-based motility necessary for pathogenicity; indeed, spirochaete flagella (periplasmic flagella) reside and rotate within the periplasmic space(2-11). The universal joint or hook that links the rotary motor to the filament is composed of ∼120-130 FlgE proteins, which in spirochaetes form an unusually stable, high-molecular-weight complex(9,12-17). In other bacteria, the hook can be readily dissociated by treatments such as heat(18). In contrast, spirochaete hooks are resistant to these treatments, and several lines of evidence indicate that the high-molecular-weight complex is the consequence of covalent crosslinking(12,13,17). Here, we show that T. denticola FlgE self-catalyses an interpeptide crosslinking reaction between conserved lysine and cysteine, resulting in the formation of an unusual lysinoalanine adduct that polymerizes the hook subunits. Lysinoalanine crosslinks are not needed for flagellar assembly, but they are required for cell motility and hence infection. The self-catalytic nature of FlgE crosslinking has important implications for protein engineering, and its sensitivity to chemical inhibitors provides a new avenue for the development of antimicrobials targeting spirochaetes.
Cameron, Caroline E.; Zuerner, Richard L.; Raverty, Stephen; Colegrove, Kathleen M.; Norman, Stephanie A.; Lambourn, Dyanna M.; Jeffries, Steven J.; Gulland, Frances M.
Leptospirosis, caused by the spirochete Leptospira, is a geographically widespread disease that affects a broad range of mammals, including marine mammals. Among pinniped populations, periodic epizootics of leptospirosis are responsible for significant die-offs. Along the west coast of North America, the most recent leptospirosis epizootic occurred in 2004, during which samples were collected from cases ranging from California to British Columbia. The primary objective of this study was to use this well-defined sample set to determine the feasibility of using PCR techniques to diagnose Leptospira infection among pinniped populations in comparison with diagnostic methodologies commonly used for marine mammals. Successful amplification was achieved from a variety of samples, including freshly collected urine, urine stored at −80°C for less than 6 months, and kidney (freshly collected, frozen, and decomposed), as well as feces- and urine-contaminated sand collected in the vicinity of a live-stranded animal. Pathological examination of tissue collected from Leptospira-infected animals revealed the presence of leptospiral antigen in the kidneys. The use of species-specific primer pairs revealed a pattern of host specificity for Leptospira interrogans in sea lions and Leptospira kirschneri in elephant seals. These studies indicate PCR is a sensitive and specific diagnostic tool for the detection of Leptospira infection in pinnipeds and reveal a potential source for epizootic, enzootic, and zoonotic spread of leptospirosis in a marine environment. PMID:18367568
Carroll, James A.; Olano, L. Rennee; Sturdevant, Daniel E.; Rosa, Patricia A.
The saprophyte Leptospira biflexa is an excellent model for studying the physiology of the medically important Leptospira genus, the pathogenic members of which are more recalcitrant to genetic manipulation and have significantly slower in vitro growth. However, relatively little is known regarding the proteome of L. biflexa, limiting its utility as a model for some studies. Therefore, we have generated a proteomic map of both soluble and membrane-associated proteins of L. biflexa during exponential growth and in stationary phase. Using these data, we identified abundantly produced proteins in each cellular fraction and quantified the transcript levels from a subset of these genes using quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR). These proteins should prove useful as cellular markers and as controls for gene expression studies. We also observed a significant number of L. biflexa membrane-associated proteins with multiple isoforms, each having unique isoelectric focusing points. L. biflexa cell lysates were examined for several posttranslational modifications suggested by the protein patterns. Methylation and acetylation of lysine residues were predominately observed in the proteins of the membrane-associated fraction, while phosphorylation was detected mainly among soluble proteins. These three posttranslational modification systems appear to be conserved between the free-living species L. biflexa and the pathogenic species Leptospira interrogans, suggesting an important physiological advantage despite the varied life cycles of the different species. PMID:26655756
Kim, Min Ja
Leptospirosis is an important public health problem in the Republic of Korea (ROK), occurring sporadically or in outbreaks during the autumn season. Wild rodents, Apodemus agrarius, have been mainly involved in human leptospirosis. The majority of carrier animals are infected with Leptospira interrogans serovar lai. The characteristic pulmonary involvement or hemorrhage may increase the clinical severity or result in fatal outcomes, and these aspects continue to be a threat to people in endemic areas. While the disease incidence has been relatively low in recent years, there have been newer findings of livestock (zoo animals and racing horses) and rats (Rattus norvegicus) captured in urban environments as potential animal carriers. Many avenues of research are still open to define current changes in ecology, epidemiology, and the disease burden in both humans and animals in the ROK, together with global warming and climate change issues. In addition, national policy regarding the weighted wildlife monitoring system and the enhanced disease surveillance program is required to facilitate better monitoring and understanding of this disease.
Bhat, Meera; Firth, Matthew A.; Williams, Simon H.; Frye, Matthew J.; Simmonds, Peter; Conte, Juliette M.; Ng, James; Garcia, Joel; Bhuva, Nishit P.; Lee, Bohyun; Che, Xiaoyu; Quan, Phenix-Lan; Lipkin, W. Ian
ABSTRACT Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus) are globally distributed and concentrate in urban environments, where they live and feed in closer proximity to human populations than most other mammals. Despite the potential role of rats as reservoirs of zoonotic diseases, the microbial diversity present in urban rat populations remains unexplored. In this study, we used targeted molecular assays to detect known bacterial, viral, and protozoan human pathogens and unbiased high-throughput sequencing to identify novel viruses related to agents of human disease in commensal Norway rats in New York City. We found that these rats are infected with bacterial pathogens known to cause acute or mild gastroenteritis in people, including atypical enteropathogenic Escherichia coli, Clostridium difficile, and Salmonella enterica, as well as infectious agents that have been associated with undifferentiated febrile illnesses, including Bartonella spp., Streptobacillus moniliformis, Leptospira interrogans, and Seoul hantavirus. We also identified a wide range of known and novel viruses from groups that contain important human pathogens, including sapoviruses, cardioviruses, kobuviruses, parechoviruses, rotaviruses, and hepaciviruses. The two novel hepaciviruses discovered in this study replicate in the liver of Norway rats and may have utility in establishing a small animal model of human hepatitis C virus infection. The results of this study demonstrate the diversity of microbes carried by commensal rodent species and highlight the need for improved pathogen surveillance and disease monitoring in urban environments. PMID:25316698
Bronson, Ellen; Spiker, Harry; Driscoll, Cindy P
American black bears (Ursus americanus) in Maryland, USA, live in forested areas in close proximity to humans and their domestic pets. From 1999 to 2011, we collected 84 serum samples from 63 black bears (18 males; 45 females) in five Maryland counties and tested them for exposure to infectious, including zoonotic, pathogens. A large portion of the bears had antibody to canine distemper virus and Toxoplasma gondii, many at high titers. Prevalences of antibodies to zoonotic agents such as rabies virus and to infectious agents of carnivores including canine adenovirus and canine parvovirus were lower. Bears also had antibodies to vector-borne pathogens common to bears and humans such as West Nile virus, Borrelia burgdorferi, Rickettsia rickettsii, and Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Antibodies were detected to Leptospira interrogans serovars Pomona, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Canicola, Grippotyphosa, and Bratislava. We did not detect antibodies to Brucella canis or Ehrlichia canis. Although this population of Maryland black bears demonstrated exposure to multiple pathogens of concern for humans and domesticated animals, the low levels of clinical disease in this and other free-ranging black bear populations indicate the black bear is likely a spillover host for the majority of pathogens studied. Nevertheless, bear populations living at the human-domestic-wildlife interface with increasing human and domestic animal exposure should continue to be monitored because this population likely serves as a useful sentinel of ecosystem health.
Kumar, Vikram; Damodharan, S; Pandaranayaka, Eswari P J; Madathiparambil, Madanan G; Tennyson, Jebasingh
Expression of Cardamom mosaic virus (CdMV) coat protein (CP) in E. coli forms virus-like particles. In this study, the structure of CdMV CP was predicted and used as a platform to display epitopes of the most abundant surface-associated protein, LipL32 of Leptospira at C, N, and both the termini of CdMV CP. In silico, we have mapped sequential and conformational B-cell epitopes from the crystal structure of LipL32 of Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni str. Fiocruz L1-130 using IEDB Elipro, ABCpred, BCPRED, and VaxiJen servers. Our results show that the epitopes displayed at the N-terminus of CdMV CP are promising vaccine candidates as compared to those displayed at the C-terminus or at both the termini. LipL32 epitopes, EP2, EP3, EP4, and EP6 are found to be promising B-cell epitopes for vaccine development. Based on the type of amino acids, length, surface accessibility, and docking energy with CdMV CP model, the order of antigenicity of the LipL32 epitopes was found to be EP4 > EP3 > EP2 > EP6.
Van, Chinh Dang; Doungchawee, Galayanee; Suttiprapa, Sutas; Arimatsu, Yuji; Kaewkes, Sasithorn; Sripa, Banchob
Opisthorchiasis caused by Opisthorchis viverrini is an important foodborne trematodiasis in Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. Interestingly, the opisthorchiasis endemic region overlaps with an area of leptospirosis emergence. Here we report an association between opisthorchiasis and leptospirosis in Thailand. Of 280 sera collected from villagers living around the Lawa wetland complex in Khon Kaen province, 199 (71%) were seropositive for leptospirosis by immunochromatography. Individuals with O. viverrini infection had a significantly higher rate of leptospirosis than those without (P=0.001). Significant higher leptospirosis prevalence was found in males than females (P=0.002). However, females but not males with O. viverrini infection showed a significantly higher seroprevalence of leptospirosis. Twenty-one of 35 environmental samples from the lake (water, mud and fish skin mucus) were positive for Leptospira spp. DNA sequencing, sequence alignment, and phylogenetic analysis of some positive nested PCR products revealed both pathogenic and intermediate pathogenic strains of Leptospira in the samples. Strikingly, O. viverrini metacercariae from the fish were positive for L. interrogans. These results suggest a close association between opisthorchiasis and leptospirosis. Contact with water, mud or eating raw fish harboring liver fluke metacercariae may be risk factors for Leptospira infection.
Thipmontree, Wilawan; Suputtamongkol, Yupin; Tantibhedhyangkul, Wiwit; Suttinont, Chuanpit; Wongswat, Ekkarat; Silpasakorn, Saowaluk
The objective of this study was to determine the changing trend of leptospirosis over time in Thailand using two prospective hospital-based studies conducted amongst adult patients with acute undifferentiated fever (AUFI) admitted to Maharat Nakhon Ratchasima Hospital, Nakhon Ratchasima Province, Thailand between July 2001 to December 2002 and between July 2011 to December 2012. During the first period, leptospirosis (98 patients, 40%) and scrub typhus (59 patients, 24.1%) were the two major causes of AUFI. In the second period, scrub typhus (137 patients, 28.3%) was found to be more common than leptospirosis (61 patients, 12.7%). Amongst patients with leptospirosis, the proportion of male patients and the median age were similar. Leptospira interrogans serogroup Autumnalis was the major infecting serogroup in both study periods. The case fatality rate of leptospirosis was significantly higher in 2011-2012 as compared with the case fatality rate in 2001-2002 (19.7% vs. 6.3%, p < 0.001). In summary, we found that number of leptospirosis cases had decreased over time. This trend is similar to reportable data for leptospirosis complied from passive surveillance by the Ministry of Public Health, Thailand. However, the case fatality rate of severe leptospirosis has increased. Severe lung hemorrhage associated with leptospirosis remained the major cause of death.
Radl, Christoph; Müller, Maria; Revilla-Fernandez, Sandra; Karner-Zuser, Stefanie; de Martin, Alfred; Schauer, Ulrike; Karner, Franz; Stanek, Gerold; Balcke, Peter; Hallas, Andreas; Frank, Herbert; Fürnschlief, Albert; Erhart, Friedrich; Allerberger, Franz
We report on the first documented outbreak of leptospirosis in Austria. In July 2010, four cases of serologically confirmed leptospirosis occurred in athletes after a triathlon held in Langau. Heavy rains preceded the triathlon (rainfall: 22 mm). The index case (Patient A) was a 41-year-old previously healthy male, who was admitted to hospital A on July 8 with a four-day history of fever up to 40°C that began 14 days after attending the triathlon event. On July 7, patient B, a 42-year-old male, was admitted to the same hospital, with signs and symptoms of kidney failure. Hemodialysis was performed every other day for 3 weeks. While the serum drawn on the day of admission was negative for antibodies against Leptospira, a specimen from July 28 tested positive with Leptospira interrogans. On July 11, patient C, a 40-year-old male, was admitted to hospital B for nephritis. On July 14, patient D, a 44-year-old male, was admitted to hospital C with a ten days history of intermittent fever, mild dry cough and headache. Our report underlines that in Austria recreational users of bodies of freshwater must be aware of an existing risk of contracting leptospirosis, particularly after heavy rains. The suppressive influence of a triathlon on the immune system is well documented and therefore an outbreak in this population group can be seen as a sensitive indicator concerning possible risk for the general population.
Deem, Sharon L; Emmons, Louise H
Maned wolves (Chrysocyon brachyurus) are neotropic mammals, listed as a CITES Appendix II species, with a distribution south of the Amazon forest from Bolivia, through northern Argentina and Paraguay and into eastern Brazil and northern Uruguay. Primary threats to the survival of free-ranging maned wolves include habitat loss, road kills, and shooting by farmers. An additional threat to the conservation of maned wolves is the risk of morbidity and mortality due to infectious and parasitic diseases. Captive maned wolves are susceptible to, and die from, common infectious diseases of domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) including canine distemper virus (CDV), canine parvovirus (CPV), rabies virus, and canine adenovirus (CAV). Results from this study show that free-ranging maned wolves in a remote area of Bolivia have been exposed to multiple infectious and parasitic agents of domestic carnivores, including CAV, CDV, CPV, canine coronavirus, rabies virus, Leptospira interrogans spp., Toxoplasma gondii, and Dirofilaria immitis, and may be at increased risk for disease due to these agents.
Senthil, N R; Palanivel, K M; Rishikesavan, R
Leptospirosis is a reemerging and a complex zoonotic bacterial disease, caused by pathogenic serovars of Leptospira interrogans. A total of 124 sera samples of dogs belonging to different categories like vaccinated, unvaccinated-semiowned, and stray dogs were subjected to sampling. Microscopic agglutination test (MAT) was conducted by using Leptospira culture. Out of 42 vaccinated dogs, 24 (57%) were positive to one or more serovars. Of the 24, 22 (52.3%), 11 (26.19%), 4 (9.5%), 1 (3%), and 2 (4.7%) were positive to icterohaemorrhagiae, canicola, pomona, grippotyphosa, and autumnalis, respectively. Of the 48 unvaccinated semiowned dogs, 10 (28.8%) showed positive agglutination to one or more serovars. Of the 10 samples, 7 (14.5%), 2 (4.1%), 3 (6.2%), 3 (6.2%), and 5 (10.2%) were positive to icterohaemorrhagiae, canicola, pomona, grippotyphosa, and autumnalis, respectively. Among the 34 stray dogs, 12 showed positive agglutination to one or more leptospiral antibodies. Of the 12 samples, 6 (17.6%) showed positive agglutination to icterohaemorrhagiae, 2 (5.8%) to canicola, 5 (14.7%) to pomona, 7 (20.5%) to grippotyphosa, and 5 (4.7%) to autumnalis. This study emphasized the changing trends in the epidemiology of leptospirosis with higher prevalence of serovar L. grippotyphosa in street dogs.
Okuda, Masaru; Sakai, Yoshiko; Matsuuchi, Megumi; Oikawa, Tatsuo; Watanabe, Malaika; Itamoto, Kazuhito; Iwata, Hiroyuki; Kano, Rui; Hasegawa, Atsuhiko; Onishi, Takafumi; Inokuma, Hisashi
OmpL1 is a 31-kDa outer membrane protein characterized in 1993 and known to be expressed only in pathogenic Leptospira spp. Recombinant OmpL1 (GST-rOmpL1) was expressed for use as an ELISA antigen for the detection of anti-Leptospira antibodies. In immunoblot analysis, the protein reacted with sera of dogs infected with three different serotypes of Leptospira interrogans, while did not react with sera of dogs both uninfected negative controls and infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, which is closely related to Leptospira spp. Moreover, in ELISA using GST-rOmpL1, the optical density (O.D.) values from the positive controls were very high (1.125 +/- 0.549). In contrast, the O.D. values from clinically healthy dogs and dogs with diseases other than leptospirosis were very low (0.109 +/- 0.046 and 0.089 +/- 0.046, respectively). These data suggest that the detection of anti-Leptospira antibodies by ELISA using the GST-rOmpL1 protein can be applied for diagnosis of canine leptospirosis.
Llewellyn, Julia-Rebecca; Krupka-Dyachenko, Inke; Rettinger, Anna Lena; Dyachenko, Viktor; Stamm, Ivonne; Kopp, Peter Andreas; Straubinger, Reinhard Konrad; Hartmann, Katrin
Leptospirosis is classified as a re-emerging zoonotic disease with global impor- tance. The aim of this study was to determine urinary shedding of leptospires in healthy dogs and to identify the shedded leptospire species. Furthermore, antibody presence against leptospires was evaluated. In a prospective study urine samples of 200 healthy dogs from Upper Bavaria were randomly collected and evaluated by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) specific for the lipL32 gene of pathogenic Leptospira (L) spp. Positive samples were further character- ized via multilocus sequence typing (MLST) to identify the Leptospira species. Microagglutination test (MAT) was performed to determine serum antibody titers. Three of 200 urine samples were found to be PCR-positive resulting in a urinary shedding prevalence of 1.5% (95% confidence interval 0.3-4.5%). All three dogs had been vaccinated before with a bivalent vaccine, covering the serogroups Canicola and lcterohaemorrhagiae. One dog shed leptospires of the species L. borgpetersenii, and two of the species L. interrogans. Of all dogs, 17.0% had antibody titers ≥ 1:100, and 3.5% titers ≥ 1:400 to serovars of non-vaccinal sero- groups. Healthy dogs that shed leptospires represent a possible risk for humans and other animals. The study emphasizes the importance of general hygiene measures in veterinary practice while handling urine of all dogs, and the use of vaccines that protect against a broader range of serogroups and that prevent urinary shedding.
Parthiban, M; Kumar, S Senthil; Balachandran, C; Kumanan, K; Aarthi, K S; Nireesha, G
Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease caused by bacteria of the genus Leptospira affecting humans and animals. Untreated leptospirosis may result in severe kidney damage, meningitis, liver failure, respiratory distress, and even death. Virulent leptospirosis can rapidly enter kidney fibroblasts and induce a programmed cell death. Thus, it is a challenge for immunologists to develop an effective and safe leptospirosis vaccine. Here, we compared the commercial canine leptospira vaccine and recombinant proteins (OmpL1 and LipL41) with and without adjuvant in terms of immune response and challenge studies in hamsters and immune response studies alone in experimental dogs. The outer membrane proteins viz., lipL41 and OmpL1 of leptospira interrogans serovars icterohaemorrhagiae were amplified. The primers were designed in such a way that amplified products of OmpL1 and lipL41 were ligated and cloned simultaneously into a single vector. The cloned products were expressed in E. coli BL21 cells. The immunoprotection studies were conducted for both recombinant proteins and commercial vaccine. The challenge experiment studies revealed that combination of both rLip41 and rOmpL1 and commercial vaccine gave 83% and 87% protection, respectively. Histopathological investigation revealed mild sub lethal changes were noticed in liver and kidney in commercially vaccinated group alone. The immune responses against recombinant leptospiral proteins were also demonstrated in dogs.
Minke, J M; Bey, R; Tronel, J P; Latour, S; Colombet, G; Yvorel, J; Cariou, C; Guiot, A L; Cozette, V; Guigal, P M
Protection against clinical disease and prevention of the renal carrier state remain the key objectives of vaccination against leptospirosis in the dog. In the present paper, groups of dogs were vaccinated twice with a commercial bacterin (EURICAN L) containing Leptospira interrogans serovars icterohaemorrhagiae and canicola and challenged with heterologous representatives of both serovars at 2 weeks (onset of immunity) or 14 months (duration of immunity) after the second vaccination. Control dogs were not vaccinated against leptospirosis and kept with the vaccinated dogs. The challenges, irrespective of the serovar, reliably produced clinical signs consistent with Leptospira infection in the control pups with up to 60% mortality. As expected clinical disease in the adult controls was less severe, but we were able to induce morbidity and mortality as well. Under these extreme challenge conditions, clinical signs in the vaccinated dogs were rare, and when observed, mild and transient in nature. Following experimental infection, 100% of the control pups and 83% of the adult controls became renal carriers. Despite the heavy challenges, none of the 18 vaccinated puppies (onset of immunity studies) and only 2 out of the 16 vaccinated adult dogs (duration of immunity studies) developed a renal carrier state. These results show that a primary course of two doses of EURICAN L provided quick onset and long-term protection against both clinical leptospirosis and the renal carrier stage. This vaccine should provide veterinarians with a powerful tool to prevent clinical disease in dogs and zoonotic transmission of leptospirosis to humans.
Yoak, Andrew J; Reece, John F; Gehrt, Stanley D; Hamilton, Ian M
We sought to (1) survey sexually intact street dogs for a wide range of diseases in three cities in Rajasthan, India and (2) evaluate links between the health of non-treated dogs and both the presence and duration of animal birth control (ABC) programs. ABC regimes sterilize and vaccinate stray dogs in an attempt to control their population and the spread of rabies. They are commonly suggested to improve the health of those dogs they serve, but here we provide evidence that these benefits also extend to untreated dogs in the community. Viral and bacterial disease seroprevalences were assessed in 240 sexually intact street dogs from Jaipur, Jodhpur, and Sawai Madhopur cities in October and September 2011. Those individuals and 50 additional dogs were assessed for the presence of ticks, fleas, fight wounds, and given body condition scores. Dogs in cities with an ABC program had with significantly (p<0.05) higher overall body condition scores, lower prevalence of open wounds likely caused by fighting, flea infestations, infectious canine hepatitis, Ehrlichia canis, Leptospira interrogans serovars, and canine distemper virus antibodies. However, those same dogs in cities with ABC programs had significantly higher prevalence of Brown Dog Tick (Rhipicephalus sanguineus) infestations. Canine parvovirus and Brucella canis prevalences were not significantly different between cities. This study is the first to demonstrate the health benefits of ABC on non-vaccinated diseases and non-treated individuals.
Silva, Hagamenon R; Tavares-Neto, José; Bina, José Carlos; Meyer, Roberto
The purposes of this investigation were to identify the frequency and risk factors of leptospiral infection among children aged between 2 and 15 years in Salvador, Bahia, household contacts of patients (index-cases) hospitalized at Couto Maia Hospital due to Leptospira interrogans (ELISA IgM positive). Among 148 household contacts from 25 selected index-cases, clinical and epidemiological data were collected and ELISA IGM and IgG were performed in paired sera (between 20 days) from 73 (49.3%). This diagnostic method divided the 73 household contacts into three groups: group A (acute or recent leptospiral infection), 30 (41.1%) children, group B (not- infected ) 34 (46.6%) and group C, (past infection) nine (12.3%) children. In group A five (16.7%) had cold syndrome simile. No statistically significant difference was found between groups A and B for sex, race, age and presence of pet dog. However, in group A there was a statistically significant predominance (p < 0.05%) of: contact with natural water courses; index-case sibling aged under fifteen years; female sex and over 9 years old; and principally lack of appropiate trash disposal in the residential area. In conclusion, leptospiral infection in children (from 2 to 15 years of age) in Salvador is underestimated, because it is asymptomatic or presents as a cold syndrome simile.
Scanziani, E; Origgi, F; Giusti, A M; Iacchia, G; Vasino, A; Pirovano, G; Scarpa, P; Tagliabue, S
Two hundred and forty-five dogs were examined serologically for the presence of antibodies against different serovars of Leptospira interrogans. The dogs belonged to five different groups: group 1 was composed of clinically healthy pet dogs referred for a regular veterinary check-up visit or for vaccination; group 2 was composed of stray dogs; and groups 3, 4 and 5 were composed of dogs maintained in three different kennels which had varying standards of hygiene. Seventy-two out of the 245 dogs examined were seropositive for leptospirosis. In group 1, there were 3-4 per cent seropositive dogs; in group 2, 30.3 per cent; in group 3, 13.8 per cent; in group 4, 38.6 per cent; and in group 5, 49.2 per cent. This study demonstrates that leptospiral infection is common in dogs housed in kennels, despite most of them being vaccinated, and that crowding of animals into unsanitary quarters is associated with a high prevalence of infection. The most common infecting serovars found were bratislava and grippotyphosa, confirming recent observations that demonstrate a significant change in the epidemiology of canine leptospirosis.
Gay, Noellie; Soupé-Gilbert, Marie-Estelle; Goarant, Cyrille
Leptospira has been a major public health concern in New Caledonia for decades. However, few multidisciplinary studies addressing the zoonotic pattern of this disease were conducted so far. Here, pig, deer and dog samples were collected. Analyses were performed using molecular detection and genotyping. Serological analyses were also performed for dogs. Our results suggest that deer are a reservoir of L. borgpetersenii Hardjobovis and pigs a reservoir of L. interrogans Pomona. Interestingly, 4.4% of dogs were renal carriers of Leptospira. In dog populations, MAT results confirmed the circulation of the same Leptospira serogroups involved in human cases. Even if not reservoirs, dogs might be of significance in human contamination by making an epidemiological link between wild or feral reservoirs and humans. Dogs could bring pathogens back home, shedding Leptospira via their urine and in turn increasing the risk of human contamination. We propose to consider dog as a vector, particularly in rural areas where seroprevalence is significantly higher than urban areas. Our results highlight the importance of animal health in improving leptospirosis prevention in a One Health approach.
Klaasen, H L B M; van der Veen, M; Molkenboer, M J C H; Sutton, D
Recent evidence based on the current epidemiological situation suggests that vaccines against canine leptospirosis in Europe should be directed against infection with Leptospira interrogans (sensu lato) serogroups Canicola, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Grippotyphosa and Australis. In the eight studies presented here, dogs were vaccinated with Nobivac L4 (MSD Animal Health), a new tetravalent inactivated vaccine containing antigen from four strains representing these four serogroups. The dogs were then challenged, together with unvaccinated control dogs, using heterologous strains from the same four serogroups. In four of the studies, pups without agglutinating antibodies against the four serogroups were vaccinated with Nobivac L4 vaccine. In a further four studies, Nobivac L4 vaccine was given 48 hours after administration of antiserum from vaccinated dogs designed to mimic the serological status of pups with maternally derived antibodies against these serogroups. In all eight studies, vaccine efficacy was assessed in terms of antibody response, clinical signs, fever, thrombocyte count, frequency of positive isolation of challenge organisms from blood, urine and kidney and frequency of interstitial nephritis. The results demonstrate that Nobivac L4 vaccine induces sterile immunity against leptospiraemia and renal infection with strains of serogroups Canicola, Icterohaemorrhagiae and Grippotyphosa, and induces sterile immunity against leptospiraemia with a strain of serogroup Australis. Since sterile immunity was achieved in pups pretreated with antiserum as well, it can be concluded that this vaccine is also likely to be efficacious in the face of maternally derived antibodies in pups from the age of six weeks.
Ardigò, Paolo; D'Incau, Mario; Pongolini, Stefano
An aborted fetus of 7 months gestation, the associated placenta, and a single blood sample from the dam were submitted for diagnostic investigation to the diagnostic laboratory of the Lombardy and Emilia-Romagna Experimental Zooprophylactic Institute in Parma, Italy. The serum was negative for Neospora caninum, Coxiella burnetii, Chlamydophila abortus, Bovine herpesvirus 1 (BHV-1), Bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV), Brucella abortus, and Brucella melitensis. Fetal tissues and placental cotyledons were pooled and tested by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the presence of BHV-1, Bovine herpesvirus 4, BVDV, N. caninum, C. burnetii, Chlamydophila spp., Schmallemberg virus, and Leptospira interrogans. All PCR assays were negative. Bacteriological examinations performed on the fetal organs revealed a pure growth of Staphylococcus lugdunensis in all organs cultured. In human beings, S. lugdunensis is responsible for community-acquired and nosocomial infections, in both immunocompetent and immunocompromised patients. In veterinary medicine, the pathogenic potential of S. lugdunensis has not been fully investigated. The incidence of S. lugdunensis is regarded as being underreported because it could be easily misidentified as Staphylococcus aureus. The current report documents the ability of S. lugdunensis to cause abortion in cattle, indicating the need for accurate diagnostic procedures to identify this emerging and zoonotic pathogen whose incidence is likely underestimated in both human and veterinary medicine.
Background Severe leptospirosis occurs mainly in a tropical environment and includes icterus, acute renal failure and hemorrhages. These bleedings, which are mainly a consequence of acute homeostatic disturbances, can also reveal simultaneous diseases. Coinfections with other tropical diseases have been previously reported during leptospirosis. To our knowledge, invasive amebiasis, which can induce gastrointestinal bleedings, has never been described in the course of severe leptospirosis. Case presentation In this report, we describe a case of a 60 year-old man living in Reunion Island (Indian Ocean, France) admitted to our intensive care unit for severe Leptospira interrogans serovar icterohaemorrhagiae infection with neurological, renal, liver and hematological involvement. Two lower gastrointestinal bleedings occurred 7 and 15 days after admission. The first episode was promoted by hemostatic disturbances while the second bleeding occurred during low-dose heparin therapy. Colonoscopy revealed a pseudo-tumoral inflammatory mass of the recto-sigmoid junction. Histological examination found trophozoites inside mucinous exudate suggestive of Entamoeba histolytica. Amoebic serology was strongly positive whereas careful detection of cysts or trophozoites on saline-wet mount was negative in three consecutive samples of stools. Amoxicillin followed by metronidazole therapy, combined with supportive care, led to an improvement in the clinical and biological patient’s condition and endoscopic appearances. Conclusion Clinicians should be aware that gastrointestinal bleeding during severe leptospirosis could not solely be the consequences of hemostatic disturbances. Careful endoscopic evaluation that may reveal curable coinfections should also be considered. PMID:24894109
Djadid, Navid Dinparast; Ganji, Zahra Faghanzadeh; Gouya, Mohammad Mehdi; Rezvani, Mahmood; Zakeri, Sedigheh
A rapid and specific nested polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) has been developed to detect and differentiate pathogenic and nonpathogenic Leptospira spp. Leptospiral genomic DNA was extracted from suspected human sera using an improved method of standard phenol-chloroform, and specific primers have been used to amplify 16S ribosomal RNA from all pathogenic and nonpathogenic Leptospira spp. The PCR products of all nonpathogenic species were digested with ApoI enzyme, but not pathogenic. To evaluate this assay, we analyzed 283 serum samples collected from suspected patients with leptospirosis. Nested PCR assay confirmed that 42 (14.8%) of 283 samples harbored Leptospira infection, and RFLP assay confirmed 38 (90.5%) of 42 and 4 (9.5%) of 42 positive cases had pathogenic and nonpathogenic Leptospira spp., respectively. Based on sequencing results, Leptospira interrogans, Leptospira kirschneri, and Leptospira wolffii and nonpathogenic Leptospira biflexa and Leptospira genomospecies 3 have been detected among analyzed samples. The nested PCR-RFLP assay developed in this study fulfills this requirement in the early stage of infection.
Calle, Paul P; Seagars, Dana J; McClave, Catherine; Senne, Dennis; House, Carol; House, James A
Serum or heparinized plasma samples were obtained between 1994 and 1996 from 20 male and 20 female adult free-ranging Pacific walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) from St. Lawrence Island and Round Island, Alaska. Samples were screened for antibodies to some potentially pathogenic bacteria and viruses. No sample had detectable antibody to Brucella spp. Three of 40 (8%) had low antibody titers to Leptospira interrogans serovars. Phocine distemper virus antibodies were not detected. Serologic responses to one or more caliciviruses (San Miguel sea lion virus 12 or vesicular exanthema of swine serotypes E54, F55, G55, 1934B) were detected in 18% (seven of 40) walrus. Antibodies to one or more subtypes of influenza A virus (H10, N2, N3, N5, N6, N7) were detected in 21% (eight of 38). Periodic screening of free-ranging populations for exposure to infectious diseases has become an important component of bio-monitoring programs to facilitate understanding and detecting trends in marine mammal populations.
Ito, F; Hunter, E F; George, R W; Pope, V; Larsen, S A
Two hybrid cell lines which produced mouse monoclonal antibody to the DAL-1 street strain of Treponema pallidum subsp. pallidum were established. These monoclonal antibodies strongly reacted with T. pallidum subsp. pallidum (Nichols strain, DAL-1, and two other street strains, strains MN-1 and MN-3) and T. pallidum subsp. pertenue by indirect microimmunofluorescent antibody and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay techniques, but they did not react with normal rabbit testicular tissue. These monoclonal antibodies did not react with nonpathogenic treponemes, such as T. phagedenis Reiter, T. denticola MRB, T. refringens Noguchi, or other spirochetes, such as Borrelia burgdorferi and Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona in microimmunofluorescent antibody smear slides or in Western blots (immunoblots). While unlabeled antibodies are useful for investigating the antigenic structures of T. pallidum, we labeled these monoclonal antibodies with fluorescein isothiocyanate and used them for diagnosing syphilis by direct staining of lesion exudate or T. pallidum subsp. pallidum in formalin-fixed tissues from patients suspected of having syphilis. Both monoclonal antibodies were directed against antigens of T. pallidum subsp. pallidum with a molecular weight of 37,000 as determined by the Western blotting technique. Images PMID:1374079
Smythe, L D; Field, H E; Barnett, L J; Smith, C S; Dohnt, M F; Symonds, M L; Moore, M R; Rolfe, P F
The sera of 271 pteropid bats (or flying foxes) collected from Queensland, New South Wales, Western Australia, and the Northern Territory were screened against a reference panel of 21 Leptospira spp. using the microscopic agglutination test (MAT). Sera were collected from December 1997 through August 1999. The MAT panel represented those serovars previously isolated in Australia, as well as exotic serovars found in neighboring countries. Leptospiral antibodies were detected in 75 (28%) of the sera and represented seven serovars, one of which, L. interrogans serovar cynopteri has been regarded as exotic to Australia. Sixty sera were reactive to one serovar, 12 sera were reactive to two serovars, and three sera were reactive to three serovars. The L. kirschneri serovar australis was most frequently identified (60.2%). The findings suggest a previously unrecognized role of pteropid bats in the natural history of leptospirosis. The potential exists for establishment of infection in new host species, the transmission of new serovars to known host species, and for changes in virulence of leptospires as a result of passage through these species.
Thibeaux, Roman; Geroult, Sophie; Benezech, Claire; Chabaud, Stéphane; Soupé-Gilbert, Marie-Estelle; Girault, Dominique; Bierque, Emilie
Background Leptospirosis is an important re-emerging infectious disease that affects humans worldwide. Infection occurs from indirect environment-mediated exposure to pathogenic leptospires through contaminated watered environments. The ability of pathogenic leptospires to persist in the aqueous environment is a key factor in transmission to new hosts. Hence, an effort was made to detect pathogenic leptospires in complex environmental samples, to genotype positive samples and to assess leptospiral viability over time. Methodology/Principal findings We focused our study on human leptospirosis cases infected with the New Caledonian Leptospira interrogans serovar Pyrogenes. Epidemiologically related to freshwater contaminations, this strain is responsible for ca. 25% of human cases in New Caledonia. We screened soil and water samples retrieved from suspected environmental infection sites for the pathogen-specific leptospiral gene lipL-32. Soil samples from all suspected infection sites tested showed detectable levels of pathogenic leptospiral DNA. More importantly, we demonstrated by viability qPCR that those pathogenic leptospires were viable and persisted in infection sites for several weeks after the index contamination event. Further, molecular phylogenetic analyses of the leptospiral lfb-1 gene successfully linked the identity of environmental Leptospira to the corresponding human-infecting strain. Conclusions/Significance Altogether, this study illustrates the potential of quantitative viability-PCR assay for the rapid detection of viable leptospires in environmental samples, which might open avenues to strategies aimed at assessing environmental risk. PMID:28241042
Bao, Lang; Yu, Ye-Rong; Terpstra, W. J.
Fourteen serum specimens from patients with early Leptospirosis proven by blood culture and serological test were detected by PCR with the oligonucleotide primers obtained from a genomic library of leptospira interrogans. The amplified DNA were hybridized with the homologous DNA probe labeling with Digoxingenin-AMPPD. All of the samples revealed the presence of leptospira and the strong signals were visualized with homologous DNA probes hybridization. Negative and positive controls appeared correctly. The DNA fragment generated from PCR amplification homologically hybridized with the DNA of 16 strains of leptospira. The single recognized band (about 400 bps) from 6 out of the 16 strains has come out which are representative of the principal strains in Sichuan, China. The results demonstrated that PCR is an advanced diagnostic technique for early Leptospirosis. The treatment of samples is easy and has little risk of DNA loss and contamination. This is a considerable advantage over other detective techniques and can be available especially in China and other developing countries.
Oliveira Giuseppe,P.; Oliveira Neves, F.; Nascimento, A.; Gomes Guimaraes, B.
Pathogenic Leptospira is the etiological agent of leptospirosis, a life-threatening disease that affects populations worldwide. Currently available vaccines have limited effectiveness and therapeutic interventions are complicated by the difficulty in making an early diagnosis of leptospirosis. The genome of Leptospira interrogans was recently sequenced and comparative genomic analysis contributed to the identification of surface antigens, potential candidates for development of new vaccines and serodiagnosis. Lp49 is a membrane-associated protein recognized by antibodies present in sera from early and convalescent phases of leptospirosis patients. Its crystal structure was determined by single-wavelength anomalous diffraction using selenomethionine-labelled crystals and refined at 2.0 Angstroms resolution. Lp49 is composed of two domains and belongs to the all-beta-proteins class. The N-terminal domain folds in an immunoglobulin-like beta-sandwich structure, whereas the C-terminal domain presents a seven-bladed beta-propeller fold. Structural analysis of Lp49 indicates putative protein-protein binding sites, suggesting a role in Leptospira-host interaction. This is the first crystal structure of a leptospiral antigen described to date.
Ralph, D; McClelland, M; Welsh, J; Baranton, G; Perolat, P
Reference strains from 48 selected serovars representing eight species of Leptospira were examined by two polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based strategies. First, mapped restriction site polymorphisms (MRSP) were examined in PCR products from portions of rrs (16S rRNA gene) and rrl (23S rRNA gene). Twenty MRSP and 2 length polymorphisms were used to group reference strains into 16 MRSP profiles. Species assignments were consistent with those obtained by a second method, genomic fingerprinting with arbitrarily primed PCR, in which strains within a species were characterized by many shared arbitrarily primed PCR products. The results of both of these methods were in general agreement with those of previous studies that used DNA-DNA relatedness and confirmed the high level of divergence among the recognized species of Leptospira. However, Leptospira meyeri serovar ranarum and evansi strains were indistinguishable from some strains of Leptospira interrogans sensu stricto. Intervening sequences of about 485 to 740 bp were located near base 1230 in rrl of some strains. Images PMID:8094390
Loeffler, I Kati; Howard, JoGayle; Montali, Richard J; Hayek, Lee-Ann; Dubovi, Edward; Zhang, Zhihe; Yan, Qigui; Guo, Wanzhu; Wildt, David E
Conservation strategies for the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) include the development of a self-sustaining ex situ population. This study examined the potential significance of infectious pathogens in giant pandas ex situ. Serologic antibody titers against canine distemper virus (CDV), canine parvovirus (CPV), canine adenovirus (CAV), canine coronavirus (CCV), canine herpesvirus, canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV), Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum, and Leptospira interrogans were measured in 44 samples taken from 19 giant pandas between 1998 and 2003 at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in Sichuan, China. Seroassays also included samples obtained in 2003 from eight red pandas (Ailurus fulgens) housed at the same institution. All individuals had been vaccinated with a Chinese canine vaccine that included modified live CDV, CPV, CAV, CCV, and CPIV. Positive antibody titers were found only against CDV, CPV, and T. gondii. Sera were negative for antibodies against the other six pathogens. Results indicate that the quality of the vaccine may not be reliable and that it should not be considered protective or safe in giant pandas and red pandas. Positive antibody titers against T. gondii were found in seven of the 19 giant pandas. The clinical, subclinical, or epidemiologic significance of infection with these pathogens via natural exposure or from modified live vaccines in giant pandas is unknown. Research in this area is imperative to sustaining a viable population of giant pandas and other endangered species.
Agudelo-Flórez, Piedad; Restrepo-Jaramillo, Berta Nelly; Arboleda-Naranjo, Margarita
Leptospirosis is a widespread zoonosis in tropical regions. The prevalence is unknown in the Colombian region of Uraba. A cross sectional study was conducted from March to October 2000 in order to determine the prevalence of Leptospira spp. antibodies and describe risk factors in nine counties in the region. The sample consisted of 582 individuals, who answered a questionnaire and had blood samples drawn to determine risk factors. Detection of Leptospira spp. antibodies was based on indirect inmunofluorescence and microagglutination. Seroprevalence was 12.5% (95%CI: 10.01-15.5). No differences were observed according to race, gender, occupation, age, living conditions, or time of residence in the area. L .interrogans serovar Grippotyphosa was the most prevalent species, identified in 53 individuals. Titers were > 1:400 in 38 seropositive individuals. In conclusion, there is a high prevalence of Leptospira spp. antibodies in the area, where it is thus necessary to establish control measures to decrease the risk of environmental exposure to leptospirosis.
Dreyfus, A; Heuer, C; Wilson, P; Collins-Emerson, J; Baker, M G; Benschop, J
The aims of this study were to determine the annual incidence of infection with Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona and/or Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo and its association with influenza-like illness (ILI) in meat workers in New Zealand. Sera were collected twice, 50-61 weeks apart, from 592 workers at eight abattoirs slaughtering sheep (n = 4), cattle (n = 2) and deer (n = 2), and tested by the microscopic agglutination test for Hardjo and Pomona. Forty-nine (8·3%) participants either seroconverted or had at least a twofold increased serological titre against either serovar. The worker infection risk was higher in sheep abattoirs (11·9%) than in abattoirs processing deer (0%) or cattle (1·2%) (P < 0·01). The annualized risk of mild (ILI) or severe clinical disease attributable to the two Leptospira serovars was 2·7%. This study has demonstrated that meat workers are at substantial risk of infection and clinical disease, suggesting further investigation of infection sources and preventive measures are warranted.
Dreyfus, Anou; Benschop, Jackie; Collins-Emerson, Julie; Wilson, Peter; Baker, Michael G; Heuer, Cord
Leptospirosis is an important occupational disease in New Zealand. The objectives of this study were to determine risk factors for sero-prevalence of leptospiral antibodies in abattoir workers. Sera were collected from 567 abattoir workers and tested by microscopic agglutination for Leptospira interrogans sv. Pomona and Leptospira borgpetersenii sv. Hardjobovis. Association between prevalence and risk factors were determined by species specific multivariable analysis. Eleven percent of workers had antibodies against Hardjobovis or/and Pomona. Workers from the four sheep abattoirs had an average sero-prevalence of 10%-31%, from the two deer abattoirs 17%-19% and the two beef abattoirs 5%. The strongest risk factor for sero-positivity in sheep and deer abattoirs was work position. In sheep abattoirs, prevalence was highest at stunning and hide removal, followed by removal of the bladder and kidneys. Wearing personal protective equipment such as gloves and facemasks did not appear to protect against infection. Home slaughtering, farming or hunting were not significantly associated with sero-prevalence. There is substantial risk of exposure to leptospires in sheep and deer abattoirs in New Zealand and a persisting, but lower risk, in beef abattoirs. Interventions, such as animal vaccination, appear necessary to control leptospirosis as an occupational disease in New Zealand.
Zakeri, Sedigheh; Khorami, Nargess; Ganji, Zahra F; Sepahian, Neda; Malmasi, Abdol-Ali; Gouya, Mohammad Mehdi; Djadid, Navid D
Leptospirosis is the most common zoonotic disease, which is transmitted to humans through contaminated water or direct exposure to the urine of infected animals. In this study, the presence and prevalence of Leptospira species in the infected samples of human (n=369) and sheep (n=75) sera and also dogs' urine (n=150), collected from four provinces of Iran, were investigated by using nested-PCR/RFLP assay followed by sequencing analysis. Nested-PCR assay detected that 98/369 (26.5%) human, 13/75 (17.33%) of sheep's sera and 33/150 (22%) dogs' urine samples were positive for Leptospira DNA. RFLP assay detected that all positive cases had either pathogenic or intermediate Leptospira species. By sequence analysis, Leptospira interrogans was the most prevalent species among the examined samples of human (53/82, 64.6%) and sheep (11/13, 84.6%). However, in dog samples, Leptospira wolffii (27/29, 93.1%) was detected for the first time and was the dominant species. The presence of L. wolffii with 100% identity in clinical human samples and animals suspected with Leptospira may provide evidence for circulation of L. wolffii and its role in transmission cycle within human and animal hosts. In addition, this species can be potentially pathogenic to human and probably animal hosts. A large epidemiology survey would be needed to define the presence and the prevalence of this species in global endemic regions.
Romero-Vivas, Claudia M. E.; Cuello-Pérez, Margarett; Agudelo-Flórez, Piedad; Thiry, Dorothy; Levett, Paul N.; Falconar, Andrew K. I.
Samples were collected from 128 symptomatic humans, 83 dogs, 49 mice, and 20 rats (Rattus rattus: 16; Rattus norvegicus: 4) in neighborhoods where human leptospirosis have been reported within the principal sea-port city of Colombia. Seroprevalences were assessed against 19 pathogenic, 1 intermediate pathogenic, and 1 saprophytic Leptospira serogroups. Pathogenic Leptospira were confirmed using conventional Leptospira-specific polymerase chain-reaction and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis analysis was used for serovar identification. Seroprevalences of 20.4%, 12.5%, 25.0%, 22.9%, and 12.4% were obtained against one to seven different serogroups in mice, R. rattus, R. norvegicus, dogs, and humans, respectively. The DNA was confirmed to be from pathogenic Leptospira by detecting the lipL32 gene in 12.5%, 3.7%, and 0.03% of the R. rattus, dog, and human samples, respectively. The first genetically typed Colombian isolate was obtained from a rat and identified as Leptospira interrogans serovar Icterohaemorrhagiae/Copenhageni. PMID:23149584
Klaasen, H. L. B. M.; van der Veen, M.; Molkenboer, M. J. C. H.; Sutton, D.
Recent evidence based on the current epidemiological situation suggests that vaccines against canine leptospirosis in Europe should be directed against infection with Leptospira interrogans (sensu lato) serogroups Canicola, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Grippotyphosa and Australis. In the eight studies presented here, dogs were vaccinated with Nobivac L4 (MSD Animal Health), a new tetravalent inactivated vaccine containing antigen from four strains representing these four serogroups. The dogs were then challenged, together with unvaccinated control dogs, using heterologous strains from the same four serogroups. In four of the studies, pups without agglutinating antibodies against the four serogroups were vaccinated with Nobivac L4 vaccine. In a further four studies, Nobivac L4 vaccine was given 48 hours after administration of antiserum from vaccinated dogs designed to mimic the serological status of pups with maternally derived antibodies against these serogroups. In all eight studies, vaccine efficacy was assessed in terms of antibody response, clinical signs, fever, thrombocyte count, frequency of positive isolation of challenge organisms from blood, urine and kidney and frequency of interstitial nephritis. The results demonstrate that Nobivac L4 vaccine induces sterile immunity against leptospiraemia and renal infection with strains of serogroups Canicola, Icterohaemorrhagiae and Grippotyphosa, and induces sterile immunity against leptospiraemia with a strain of serogroup Australis. Since sterile immunity was achieved in pups pretreated with antiserum as well, it can be concluded that this vaccine is also likely to be efficacious in the face of maternally derived antibodies in pups from the age of six weeks. PMID:23180149
Gay, Noellie; Soupé-Gilbert, Marie-Estelle; Goarant, Cyrille
Leptospira has been a major public health concern in New Caledonia for decades. However, few multidisciplinary studies addressing the zoonotic pattern of this disease were conducted so far. Here, pig, deer and dog samples were collected. Analyses were performed using molecular detection and genotyping. Serological analyses were also performed for dogs. Our results suggest that deer are a reservoir of L. borgpetersenii Hardjobovis and pigs a reservoir of L. interrogans Pomona. Interestingly, 4.4% of dogs were renal carriers of Leptospira. In dog populations, MAT results confirmed the circulation of the same Leptospira serogroups involved in human cases. Even if not reservoirs, dogs might be of significance in human contamination by making an epidemiological link between wild or feral reservoirs and humans. Dogs could bring pathogens back home, shedding Leptospira via their urine and in turn increasing the risk of human contamination. We propose to consider dog as a vector, particularly in rural areas where seroprevalence is significantly higher than urban areas. Our results highlight the importance of animal health in improving leptospirosis prevention in a One Health approach. PMID:24747539
Desvars, Amélie; Naze, Florence; Vourc'h, Gwenaël; Cardinale, Eric; Picardeau, Mathieu; Michault, Alain; Bourhy, Pascale
Our objective was to identify local animal reservoirs of leptospirosis to explain the unusual features of Leptospira strains recently described among patients on the island of Mayotte. By means of a microscopic agglutination test using local clinical isolates, we found that 11.2% of black rats were seropositive to Leptospira, whereas 10.2% of flying foxes, 2% of lemurs, 93.1% of domestic dogs, and 87.5% of stray dogs were seropositive. As observed in humans, Mini was the main serogroup circulating in animals, whereas serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae was absent. Using quantitative polymerase chain reaction, we also showed that 29.8% of rats carried leptospires in their kidneys. The sequencing of 16S rRNA gene sequences of Leptospira found in black rat kidneys identified four genomospecies (Leptospira borgpetersenii, Leptospira interrogans, Leptospira kirschneri, and L. borgpetersenii group B), which established black rats as the major source of leptospirosis transmission to humans. The origins of such a genetic diversity in Leptospira strains are discussed. PMID:22764304
Background Most of the current knowledge of leptospirosis epidemiology originates from serological results obtained with the reference Microscopic Agglutination Test (MAT). However, inconsistencies and weaknesses of this diagnostic technique are evident. A growing use of PCR has improved the early diagnosis of leptospirosis but a drawback is that it cannot provide information on the infecting Leptospira strain which provides important epidemiologic data. Our work is aimed at evaluating if the sequence polymorphism of diagnostic PCR products could be used to identify the infecting Leptospira strains in the New Caledonian environment. Results Both the lfb1 and secY diagnostic PCR products displayed a sequence polymorphism that could prove useful in presumptively identifying the infecting leptospire. Using both this polymorphism and MLST results with New Caledonian isolates and clinical samples, we confirmed the epidemiological relevance of the sequence-based identification of Leptospira strains. Additionally, we identified one cluster of L. interrogans that contained no reference strain and one cluster of L. borgpetersenii found only in the introduced Rusa deer Cervus timorensis russa that is its probable reservoir. Conclusions The sequence polymorphism of diagnostic PCR products proved useful in presumptively identifying the infecting Leptospira strains. This could contribute to a better understanding of leptospirosis epidemiology by providing epidemiological information that cannot be directly attained from the use of PCR as an early diagnostic test for leptospirosis. PMID:21176235
Collares-Pereira, M; Mathias, M L; Santos-Reis, M; Ramalhinho, M G; Duarte-Rodrigues, P
The role of rodents as Leptospira renal carriers in Terceira island was evaluated (1993-1995) through kidney culture and serology [microscopic aglutination test (MAT)] of 94 mice and rats. Fifty-nine animals were positive (n = 41 by serology + culturing; n = 11 serology; n = 7 culturing), presenting a wide distribution in man-made and natural areas. House mice had the highest bacteriological (82.9%) and serological (90.9%) rates, being strictly related to serovar arborea. Black rats were involved in the dispersion of all isolated L. interrogans sensu lato serovars (arborea, copenhageni and icterohaemorrhagiae). Logistic regression analysis and non-metric multi-dimensional scaling, relating Leptospira infection with biological and environmental variables, expressed that adult males Mus domesticus, sexually active and living in humid biotopes, mainly above 500 m, are the most likely reservoirs. This study emphasizes the role of house-mice in the epidemiology of leptospirosis in Terceira and the need of reducing the risk of Leptospira transmission through integrated control programmes, primarily focusing on adult house-mice in peri-domestic environments, before the breeding season.
Chideroli, R T; Pereira, U P; Gonçalves, D D; Nakamura, A Y; Alfieri, A A; Alfieri, A F; Freitas, J C
Most epidemiologic studies on bovine leptospirosis are based on serological tests that use antibodies against several serotypes, including the serovar Hardjo, which is widespread and considered to be the most adapted to bovine hosts. However, using only serological studies is not sufficient to identify and distinguish species of leptospires. The aim of this study was report the first isolation in Brazil of two strains serovar Hardjo obtained in urine samples from naturally infected cows in a small Brazilian dairy herd and find the genetic species and consequently the type strain Hardjobovis by molecular characterization. Fifteen dairy cows with a history of reproductive failure, such as abortion and infertility, were selected. Urine samples obtained from each animal were immediately seeded in tubes containing Ellinghausen-McCullough-Johnson-Harris culture medium. The identification of the isolates was performed by Multilocus variable-number tandem-repeat analysis (MLVA) technique and phylogenetic analysis of partial sequence of gene sec Y. From the 15 urine samples evaluated, two Leptospira were found and identified as the Londrina 49 and Londrina 54 strains. The MLVA profiles and sequencing of gene sec Y characterized the isolates as L. borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo strain Hadjobovis because it has different genetic pattern of Leptospira interrogans serovar Hardjo strain Hardjoprajitno. Therefore, more studies are needed including isolation and molecular characterization from regional strains to obtain a better knowledge about epidemiology of serovar Hardjo in bovine which may assist in future strategies of prevention and control of bovine leptospirosis.
Zakeri, Sedigheh; Sepahian, Neda; Afsharpad, Mandana; Esfandiari, Behzad; Ziapour, Peyman; Djadid, Navid D.
This study was conducted to investigate the prevalence of Leptospira species in Mazandaran Province of Iran by using nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR)/restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) methods and sequencing analysis. Blood samples (n = 119) were collected from humans suspected of having leptospirosis from different parts of the province in 2007. By using an indirect immunofluorescent antibody test (IFAT), we determined that 35 (29.4%) of 119 suspected cases had leptospiral antibody titers ≥ 1:80, which confirmed the diagnosis of leptospirosis. Nested PCR assay also determined that 60 (50.4%) of 119 samples showed Leptospira infection. Furthermore, 44 (73.3%) of 60 confirmed leptospirosis amplified products were subjected to sequencing analysis. Sequence alignment identified L. interrogans, L. kirschneri, and L. wolffii species. All positive cases diagnosed by IFAT or PCR were in patients who reported contact with animals, high-risk occupational activities, and exposure to contaminated water. Therefore, it is important to increase attention about this disease among physicians and to strengthen laboratory capacity for its diagnosis in infected patients in Iran. PMID:20439973
Confer, Anthony W; Ayalew, Sahlu
The OmpA family of outer membrane proteins is a group of genetically related, heat-modifiable, surface-exposed, porin proteins that are in high-copy number in the outer membrane of mainly Gram-negative bacteria. OmpA proteins are characterized by an N-terminal domain that forms an eight-stranded, anti-parallel β barrel, which is embedded in the outer membrane. The C-terminal domain is globular and located in the periplasmic space. Escherichia coli OmpA is the best characterized of the proteins. Other well-characterized OmpA-equivalent proteins from pathogenic bacteria include Pseudomonas aeruginosa OprF, Haemophilus influenzae P5, Klebsiella pneumoniae OmpA, and Chlamydia trachomatis major outer membrane protein (MOMP). OmpA from the veterinary pathogens Mannheimia haemolytica, Haemophilus parasuis, Leptospira interrogans, and Pasteurella multocida have been studied to a lesser extent. Among many of the pathogenic bacteria, OmpA proteins have important pathogenic roles including bacterial adhesion, invasion, or intracellular survival as well as evasion of host defenses or stimulators of pro-inflammatory cytokine production. These pathogenic roles are most commonly associated with central nervous system, respiratory and urogenital diseases. Alternatively, OmpA family proteins can serve as targets of the immune system with immunogenicity related to surface-exposed loops of the molecule. In several cases, OmpA proteins are under evaluation as potential vaccine candidates.
Brem, S; Gerhards, H; Wollanke, B; Meyer, P; Kopp, H
Vitreous samples from 43 horses which underwent vitrectomy because of equine recurrent uveitis (ERU) were cultured for leptospires. Out of 4 vitreous samples (4/43 = 9%), leptospires could be isolated. In 3 cases, serovar grippotyphosa, and in one case, a serovar out of the serogroup Australis were identified. So for the first time, in several horses with ERU in vivo cultures of vitreous material were positive for leptospires. A strong evidence of association between leptospiral infection and uveitis is discussed for many years. In this investigation the leptospiral etiology is confirmed. Vitreous material from 42 and serum samples from 40 horses were tested for specific antibodies to leptospira by microagglutination test (MAT). In 34 vitreous samples (34/42 = 81%), leptospiral antibody titers of 1:50 or higher were detected. In 33 horses (33/40 = 83%) leptospiral antibody titers of 1:50 or higher could also be detected in the serum. Altogether, leptospiral antibodies were detected by the MAT in the serum and in the vitreous material of 39 of 43 horses (= 91%) subjected to vitrectomy. These results indicate, that ERU is probably often a sequel to systemic Leptospira interrogans infection. The presence of intact leptospires and specific antibodies in eyes affected with ERU indicates a local antibody production to leptospira organisms and/or their antigens.
Chatfield, Jenifer; Milleson, Michael; Stoddard, Robyn; Bui, Duy M; Galloway, Renee
Leptospira is a global pathogen of emerging public health importance in both developing and industrialized nations and can infect almost all mammalian species, including humans. As suburbanization and the popularity of outdoor recreational activities increases, so do human-wildlife and companion animal-wildlife interfaces. Florida offers a tropical climate favorable for outdoor activities and a semirural landscape that sustains an abundant feral hog population. Because no survey ofleptospirosis in feral hogs (Sus scrofa) in Florida has been published to our knowledge, we sought to establish preliminary seroprevalence ofleptospirosis exposure in feral hogs in Florida. Blood samples were collected opportunistically from 158 male and 166 female feral hogs taken at managed hunts and by permitted trappers in the northern, central, and southern regions of Florida. Samples were then analyzed using the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) for antibody titers to 20 Leptospira serovars representing 17 serogroups. A titer of > 1:100 was considered positive; 33% (107/324 total samples) were positive to at least one serovar, and 46% of those were positive to multiple serovars. Antibodies to L. interrogans serovar Bratislava strain Jez Bratislava (serogroup Australis) was the most common, with 18% (58/324) testing positive for antibodies. These initial data indicate that there is a significant possibility of feral hogs having a larger role in the complex etiology of leptospirosis in Florida than historically estimated and that further investigation is warranted.
Gehrt, Stanley D; Kinsel, Michael J; Anchor, Chris
Parasites have the potential to influence the population dynamics of mammalian hosts, either as a single devastating pathogen or as a community effect. Striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis) are typically host to rabies, which often regulates population numbers. We assessed micro- and macroparasite dynamics in striped skunk populations in the absence of rabies, to determine if a single pathogen, or community, was responsible for a majority of skunk deaths. We monitored mortality due to pathogens, and prevalence of pathogens via serology and necropsy, in two populations of striped skunks in northern Illinois during 1998-2004. Transmissible pathogens requiring direct transmission (i.e., canine distemper virus, canine parvovirus) exhibited high annual variability in prevalence. In contrast, those pathogens employing a more indirect, environmental route of transmission (i.e., Leptospira interrogans and Toxoplasma gondii) appeared to exhibit relatively less annual variability in prevalence. Skunks were diagnosed with infections from an average of 4.08 (SD=2.52, n=32) species of endoparasites, with a range of 1-11. Macroparasite prevalence and intensity did not vary among seasons, or sex or age of host. Severe infections occurred with multiple parasite species, and patterns of aggregation suggested some parasite species, or more likely the parasite community, act as a limiting mechanism in skunk populations.
Zhao, W.; Chu, W. S.; Yang, F. F.; Yu, M. J.; Chen, D. L.; Guo, X. Y.; Zhou, D. W.; Shi, N.; Marcelli, A.; Niu, L. W.; Teng, M. K.; Gong, W. M.; Benfatto, M.; Wu, Z. Y.
The last several years have witnessed a tremendous increase in biological applications using X-ray absorption spectroscopy (BioXAS), thanks to continuous advancements in synchrotron radiation (SR) sources and detector technology. However, XAS applications in many biological systems have been limited by the intrinsic limitations of the Extended X-ray Absorption Fine Structure (EXAFS) technique e.g., the lack of sensitivity to bond angles. As a consequence, the application of the X-ray absorption near-edge structure (XANES) spectroscopy changed this scenario that is now continuously changing with the introduction of the first quantitative XANES packages such as Minut XANES (MXAN). Here we present and discuss the XANES code MXAN, a novel XANES-fitting package that allows a quantitative analysis of experimental data applied to Zn K-edge spectra of two metalloproteins: Leptospira interrogans Peptide deformylase ( LiPDF) and acutolysin-C, a representative of snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) from Agkistrodon acutus venom. The analysis on these two metallohydrolases reveals that proteolytic activities are correlated to subtle conformation changes around the zinc ion. In particular, this quantitative study clarifies the occurrence of the LiPDF catalytic mechanism via a two-water-molecules model, whereas in the acutolysin-C we have observed a different proteolytic activity correlated to structural changes around the zinc ion induced by pH variations.
Mayer-Scholl, Anne; Hammerl, Jens Andre; Schmidt, Sabrina; Ulrich, Rainer G; Pfeffer, Martin; Woll, Dietlinde; Scholz, Holger C; Thomas, Astrid; Nöckler, Karsten
Leptospirosis is an acute, febrile disease occurring in humans and animals worldwide. Leptospira spp. are usually transmitted through direct or indirect contact with the urine of infected reservoir animals. Among wildlife species, rodents act as the most important reservoir for both human and animal infection. To gain a better understanding of the occurrence and distribution of pathogenic leptospires in rodent and shrew populations in Germany, kidney specimens of 2973 animals from 11 of the 16 federal states were examined by PCR. Rodent species captured included five murine species (family Muridae), six vole species (family Cricetidae) and six shrew species (family Soricidae). The most abundantly trapped animals were representatives of the rodent species Apodemus flavicollis, Clethrionomys glareolus and Microtus agrestis. Leptospiral DNA was amplified in 10% of all animals originating from eight of the 11 federal states. The highest carrier rate was found in Microtus spp. (13%), followed by Apodemus spp. (11%) and Clethrionomys spp. (6%). The most common Leptospira genomospecies determined by duplex PCR was L. kirschneri, followed by L. interrogans and L. borgpetersenii; all identified by single locus sequence typing (SLST). Representatives of the shrew species were also carriers of Leptospira spp. In 20% of Crocidura spp. and 6% of the Sorex spp. leptospiral DNA was detected. Here, only the pathogenic genomospecies L. kirschneri was identified.
Kanagavel, Murugesan; Princy Margreat, Alphonse Asirvatham; Arunkumar, Manivel; Prabhakaran, Shanmugarajan Gnanasekaran; Shanmughapriya, Santhanam; Natarajaseenivasan, Kalimuthusamy
Here the rodent carrier status for the transmission of human leptospirosis in Tiruchirappalli, district, Tamil Nadu, India was assessed. The predominantly circulating leptospiral STs were recognized by multilocus sequence typing (MLST). A total of 113 rodents were trapped from different provinces of the Tiruchirappalli district. The most prevalent rodent was Bandicota bengalensis (37.2%), and of the total, 52.2% (n=59) rodents were found to be positive for leptospiral 16S rRNA. These results were validated with a leptospiral culture positivity of 45.8% (n=27). Three isolates from Chennai (2 rodents and 1 human) and 1 human isolate from Tiruchirappalli were included to understand the spatial variations and to track the source of human leptospirosis. The serogroup, serovar, and species level identification of all 31 isolates identified 28 to be Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Javanica and three as Leptospira interrogans serovar Autumnalis. MLST analysis defined all isolates to the existing ST profiles (ST145 and ST27) with the exception of 6 L. borgpetersenii (ST DR) isolates that showed variations in the sucA and pfkB loci. The DR ST was locally confined to Chatram province of Tiruchirappalli suggesting an epidemiological link. The predominant STs, ST145 and ST-DR form a group, indicating the presence of original strain that subsequently diverged evolutionarily into two STs. The variations between L. borgpetersenii in sucA and pfkB loci may be an indication that evolutionary changes transpired in Tiruchirappalli.
Pedersen, K; Anderson, T D; Bevins, S N; Pabilonia, K L; Whitley, P N; Virchow, D R; Gidlewski, T
Leptospirosis is the most widespread zoonosis in humans worldwide. In the United States, widespread detection of antibodies to leptospirosis have been identified in feral swine (Sus scrofa) with the highest detection of serovars, Bratislava, Icterohaemorrhagiae, and Pomona. Over the past few years, feral swine populations have expanded their geographical range and distribution in the United States with reports in at least 39 of 50 states. Since feral swine serve as reservoirs for serovars that can infect humans, it is important to understand the risk of transmission. In order to learn more about the probability that feral swine shed infectious leptospires, we collected kidneys and paired serum when possible from 677 feral swine in 124 counties of 29 states. These counties had previously been identified as antibody positive for Leptospira interrogans serovars Bratislava, Canicola, Grippotyphosa, Hardjo, Icterohaemorrhagiae or Pomona. Although exposure to these same six serovars of leptospirosis continued to be high (53% overall) in the counties we sampled, we detected leptospiral DNA in only 3·4% of feral swine kidneys tested. Based on these results, it appears that although feral swine can serve as a source of infection to humans, especially in those who are more likely to encounter them directly such as wildlife biologists, veterinarians, and hunters, the risk may be relatively low. However, further studies to examine the relationship between leptospiral shedding in the urine and kidneys in addition to culturing the organism are recommended in order to better understand the risk associated with feral swine.
McCue, P M; O'Farrell, T P
Blood from endangered San Joaquin kit foxes (Vulpes macrotis mutica) inhabiting the Elk Hills Naval Petroleum Reserve, Kern County, and the Elkhorn Plain, San Luis Obispo County, California, was collected in 1981, 1982 and 1984 and sera were tested for antibodies against 10 selected pathogens. Proportions of kit fox sera containing antibodies against pathogens were: canine parvovirus, 100% in 1981-1982 and 67% in 1984; infectious canine hepatitis virus, 6% in 1981-1982 and 21% in 1984; canine distemper virus, none in 1981-1982 and 14% in 1984; Francisella tularensis, 8% in 1981-1982 and 31% in 1984; Brucella abortus, 8% in 1981-1982 and 3% in 1984; Brucella canis, 14% in 1981-1982 and none in 1984; Toxoplasma gondii, 6% in 1981-1982; Coccidioides immitis, 3% in 1981-1982; and Yersinia pestis and Leptospira interrogans serotypes canicola, grippotyphosa, hardjo, icterohaemorrhagiae, and pomona, none in 1981-1982. Although antibodies against selected pathogens were present, no clinical indications of disease were observed in these fox populations.
Stritof Majetic, Zrinka; Galloway, Renee; Ruzic Sabljic, Eva; Milas, Zoran; Mojcec Perko, Vesna; Habus, Josipa; Margaletic, Josip; Pernar, Renata; Turk, Nenad
In this survey we investigated a population of small mammals in Eastern Croatia in order to determine Leptospira carriage rates and identify circulating serovars. Out of 67 trapped animals, 20 (29.9%) isolates were obtained. Identification of isolates using microscopic agglutination test, pulsed field gel electrophoresis and multi locus sequence typing revealed that 10 (50.0%) isolates belong to serogroup Pomona, serovar Mozdok, 6 (30.0%) isolates to serogroup Australis, serovar Jalna, 2 (10.0%) isolates to serogroup Sejroe, serovar Saxkoebing, and 1 (5.0%) isolate to serogroup Grippotyphosa, serovar Grippotyphosa. One isolate from serogroup Bataviae was unable to be identified to the serovar level. Amplification of a 331-bp region of the locus LA0322 using real-time polymerase chain reaction determined that 12 (60.0%) isolates belong to L. kirschneri, 6 (30.0%) isolates to L. interrogans, and 2 (10.0%) isolates to L. borgpetersenii. Leptospira carriage rate was high (29.9%), which corresponds to a high incidence of human and domestic animal leptospirosis in Eastern Croatia. Furthermore, 90.0% of the isolates belong to serogroups Pomona, Australis and Sejroe which are also the most prevalent serogroups in humans in this area. These findings suggest that small mammals might be an important source of Leptospira spp. infection in Eastern Croatia.
Pérez-Flores, Jonathan; Charruau, Pierre; Cedeño-Vázquez, Rogelio; Atilano, Daniel
Sentinel species such as crocodilians are used to monitor the health of ecosystems. However, few studies have documented the presence of zoonotic diseases in wild populations of these reptiles. Herein we analyzed 48 serum samples from Crocodylus acutus (n = 34) and C. moreletii (n = 14) from different sites in the state of Quintana Roo (Mexico) to detect antibodies to Leptospira interrogans by means of a microscopic agglutination test (MAT). Crocodylus acutus and C. moreletii tested positive to 11 and 9 serovars, respectively, with Grippotyphosa being the serovar with the highest prevalence in Cozumel island (100%), Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve (70.6%), and Río Hondo (100%), while in Chichankanab Lake, it was Bratislava (75%). Titers ranged from 1:50 to 1:3200, and the most frequent was 1:50 in all study sites. Leptospira is present in fresh and saltwater individuals due to the resistance of the bacterium in both environments. Cases of infected people involved with crocodile handling and egg collection suggest that these reptiles could play an important role in the transmission of leptospirosis. Preventive medicine programs should consider the monitoring of reptiles, and testing the soil and water, to prevent outbreaks of leptospirosis in facilities containing crocodiles.
Escamilla, H Patricia; Martínez, M José Juan; Medina, C Mario; Morales, S Elizabeth
The objective of this study was to determine the frequency of infectious bovine abortion and to identify some of its causes, specifically brucellosis, leptospirosis, bovine viral diarrhea, infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, and neosporosis. The study was carried out in a dairy herd in the state of Queretaro, Mexico, between September 2002 and March 2003. At the beginning of the study, blood samples were taken from a random 33% of the 300 lactating or pregnant cows; antibodies against Leptospira interrogans were the most commonly identified, in 91% of the 99 samples. Blood samples were also taken 14 to 28 d after the 26 subsequent abortions in the herd in the 6-mo study period, as well as from 22 cows that had not aborted within 5 d after the abortions in the other group. Seroconversion was most frequent for L. hardjo, occurring in 8 (67%) of the 12 dams that aborted after the initial serologic sampling and for which paired serum samples were therefore available. Of the 16 collected fetuses, 10 had histologic lesions suggesting infection in various organs, the features correlating with the serologic results for the dams in 7 cases. Thus, the abortions may have been caused by more than 1 infectious agent.
San Martin, Fabiana; Mechaly, Ariel E; Larrieux, Nicole; Wunder, Elsio A; Ko, Albert I; Picardeau, Mathieu; Trajtenberg, Felipe; Buschiazzo, Alejandro
The protein FcpA is a unique component of the flagellar filament of spirochete bacteria belonging to the genus Leptospira. Although it plays an essential role in translational motility and pathogenicity, no structures of FcpA homologues are currently available in the PDB. Its three-dimensional structure will unveil the novel motility mechanisms that render pathogenic Leptospira particularly efficient at invading and disseminating within their hosts, causing leptospirosis in humans and animals. FcpA from L. interrogans was purified and crystallized, but despite laborious attempts no useful X ray diffraction data could be obtained. This challenge was solved by expressing a close orthologue from the related saprophytic species L. biflexa. Three different crystal forms were obtained: a primitive and a centred monoclinic form, as well as a hexagonal variant. All forms diffracted X-rays to suitable resolutions for crystallographic analyses, with the hexagonal type typically reaching the highest limits of 2.0 Å and better. A variation of the quick-soaking procedure resulted in an iodide derivative that was instrumental for single-wavelength anomalous diffraction methods.
Marotto, P C; Marotto, M S; Santos, D L; Souza, T N; Seguro, A C
We conducted a retrospective analysis of 43 consecutive children (35 boys and 8 girls), 4-14 years of age and living in an urban area, who were hospitalized at the Instituto de Infectologia Emilio Ribas (Sao Paulo, Brazil) from January 1989 to December 1995 with an acute illness subsequently diagnosed as leptospirosis. Epidemiologic data indicated contact with contaminated water in most cases (88%). The patient sera reacted most strongly with Leptospira interrogans serovars copenhageni (45%) and icterohaemorrhagiae (32.7%). Jaundice was present in 70% of the patients, elevated transaminase levels in 56%, renal failure in 79%, meningitis in 23%, thrombocytopenia in 65%, and hemorrhagic manifestations in 11.6%. Three children had pulmonary hemorrhage with respiratory failure and one death occurred as a consequence of respiratory failure. We also observed that antimicrobial therapy reduced the extent of renal failure and thrombocytopenia. These data indicate that antibiotics benefit children with late, severe leptospirosis and that severe disease also occurs in children and should be considered in the differential diagnosis.
Zhou, Guangpeng; Wen, Shaoping; Liu, Yanwei; Li, Rongrong; Zhong, Xiaoying; Feng, Lu; Wang, Lei; Cao, Boyang
The safety and accessibility of drinking water are major concerns throughout the world. Consumption of water contaminated with infectious agents, toxic chemicals or radiological hazards represents a significant health risk and is strongly associated with mortality. Therefore, we have developed an oligonucleotide-based microarray using the sequences of 16S-23S rDNA internal transcribed spacer regions (ITS) and the gyrase subunit B gene (gyrB) found in the most prevalent and devastating waterborne pathogenic agents. This new diagnostic contains 26 specific probes and can simultaneously detect Aeromonas hydrophila, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Legionella pneumophila, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella spp., Shigella spp., Staphylococcus aureus, Vibrio choleraeo, Vibrio parahaemolyticus, Yersinia enterocolitica and Leptospira interrogans. Testing was carried out against a total of 218 bacterial strains, including 53 representative strains, 103 clinical isolates and 62 strains of other bacterial species belonging to 10 genera and 48 species. The results were specific and reproducible, with a detection sensitivity of 0.1 ng DNA or 10(4)CFU/ml achieved for pure cultures of each target organism. The diluted cultures and real drinking water samples were tested by the microarray with 100% accuracy. This novel diagnostic method is superior in time- and labor-efficiency to conventional bacterial culture and antiserum agglutination, and can be readily applied to epidemiological surveillance and other food safety applications.
Bryan, Heather M.; Darimont, Chris T.; Paquet, Paul C.; Ellis, John A.; Goji, Noriko; Gouix, Maëlle; Smits, Judit E.
Ranked among the top threats to conservation worldwide, infectious disease is of particular concern for wild canids because domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) may serve as sources and reservoirs of infection. On British Columbia’s largely undeveloped but rapidly changing central and north coasts, little is known about diseases in wolves (Canis lupus) or other wildlife. However, several threats exist for transfer of diseases among unvaccinated dogs and wolves. To gain baseline data on infectious agents in this area, including those with zoonotic potential, we collected blood and stool samples from 107 dogs in 5 remote communities in May and September 2007. Serology revealed that the dogs had been exposed to canine parvovirus, canine distemper virus, Bordetella bronchiseptica, canine respiratory coronavirus, and Leptospira interrogans. No dogs showed evidence of exposure to Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Borrelia burgdorferi, Dirofilaria immitis, or Cryptococcus gattii. Of 75 stool samples, 31 contained at least 1 parasitic infection, including Taeniid tapeworms, the nematodes Toxocara canis and Toxascaris leonina, and the protozoans Isospora sp., Giardia sp., Cryptosporidium sp., and Sarcocystis sp. This work provides a sound baseline for future monitoring of infectious agents that could affect dogs, sympatric wild canids, other wildlife, and humans. PMID:21461190
Tonin, Alexandre A; Pimentel, Victor C; da Silva, Aleksandro S; de Azevedo, Maria Isabel; Souza, Viviane C G; Wolkmer, Patrícia; Rezer, João F P; Badke, Manoel R T; Leal, Daniela B R; Schetinger, Maria Rosa C; Monteiro, Silvia G; Lopes, Sonia T A
Leptospirosis is a systemic disease of humans and domestic animals, mainly dogs, cattle and swine. The course of human leptospirosis varies from mild to severe fatal forms and the most severe form of human leptospirosis is principally caused by Leptospira interrogans serovar icterohaemorrhagiae (L. icterohaemorrhagiae). The enzyme adenosine deaminase (ADA) plays an important role in the production and differentiation of blood cells. The aim of this study was to evaluate the activity of ADA in serum, erythrocytes and lymphocytes of rats infected with L. icterohaemorrhagiae, as compared with non-infected rats. Twenty-four adult rats, divided into two uniform groups (A and B) were used for the enzymatic assays. The animals in Group B were inoculated intraperitoneally with 2×10(8) leptospires/rat, and the rodents in Group A (control) were not-inoculated. Blood collection was performed on days 5 and 15 post-infection (PI) and the blood used to assess the ADA activity. The infection by L.icterohaemorrhagiae altered erythrocyte count, hemoglobin concentration and hematocrit, causing a decrease in all these parameters on day 15 PI. Lymphocytes decreased significantly on day 15 PI, and ADA activity in serum was inhibited in infected rats on days 5 and 15 PI and its activity in erythrocytes were increased on day 5 PI. On day 5 PI, we found an increase in ADA activity in erythrocytes of infected rats. No correlation was observed between hematocrit and erythrocyte ADA activity on days 5 and 15 PI. The ADA activity was inhibited in rats infected on day 15 PI. A positive correlation (r(2)=60) was also observed between the number of lymphocytes and ADA activity in lymphocytes on day 15 PI (P<0.05). In conclusion, our results showed that the ADA activity is altered in serum, lymphocytes and erythrocytes in experimental infection by L.icterohaemorrhagiae in rats, concomitantly with hematological parameters.
Agampodi, Suneth B; Dahanayaka, Niroshan J; Bandaranayaka, Anoma K; Perera, Manoj; Priyankara, Sumudu; Weerawansa, Prasanna; Matthias, Michael A; Vinetz, Joseph M
Leptospirosis is known to be an important cause of weather disaster-related infectious disease epidemics. In 2011, an outbreak of leptospirosis occurred in the relatively dry district of Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka where diagnosis was resisted by local practitioners because leptospirosis was not known in the area and the clinical presentation was considered atypical. To identify the causative Leptospira associated with this outbreak, we carried out a cross-sectional study. Consecutive clinically suspected cases in this district were studied during a two-and-a-half-month period. Of 96 clinically suspected cases, 32 (33.3%) were confirmed by qPCR, of which the etiological cause in 26 cases was identified using 16S rDNA sequencing to the species level. Median bacterial load was 4.1 × 10(2)/mL (inter-quartile range 3.1-6.1 × 10(2)/mL). In contrast to a 2008 Sri Lankan leptospirosis outbreak in the districts of Kegalle, Kandy, and Matale, in which a predominance of Leptospira interrogans serovars Lai and Geyaweera was found, most cases in the 2011 outbreak were caused by Leptospira kirschneri. Seven (21.9%) confirmed cases had acute renal failure; five (15.6%) had myocarditis; severe thrombocytopenia (<20,000/uL) was seen in five (15.6%) cases. This outbreak of leptospirosis in the relatively dry zone of Sri Lanka due primarily to L. kirschneri was characterized by markedly different clinical presentations and low leptospiremia. These observations and data demonstrate the public health relevance of molecular diagnostics in such settings, possibly related to the microgeographic variations of different Leptospira species, but of particular value to public health intervention in what appears to have been a regionally neglected tropical disease.
Jankowski, Gwen; Adkesson, Michael J; Saliki, Jeremiah T; Cárdenas-Alayza, Susana; Majluf, Patricia
The Peruvian population of the South American fur seal ( Arctocephalus australis ) is a distinct evolutionarily significant unit that is endangered. One of the largest rookeries for this species in Peru is located within the Punta San Juan marine protected area (15°22'S, 75°12'W). To better understand the current health status of this population, exposure to 10 pinniped pathogens was evaluated in adult female fur seals (n=29) via serology and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) techniques in November 2010. The results suggest this population is naïve to canine and phocine distemper viruses (serum neutralization test), five Leptospira interrogans serovars (microscopic agglutination test), and Brucella canis (card test). Indirect fluorescent antibody testing for Toxoplasma gondii , Neospora caninum , and Sarcocystis neurona was also uniformly negative. PCR testing of nasal swabs using previously described Mycoplasma spp. primers was positive in 37.9% (11/29) of samples. One animal was positive via card test for Brucella abortus , whereas 53.7% (15/28) were positive or suspect using a marine Brucella competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Antibody to phocine herpesvirus-1 (PHV-1) was identified in 85.7% (24/28) of the sampled population by serum neutralization testing. Overall, exposure to Mycoplasma spp., Brucella spp., and PHV-1 was observed, but results demonstrated low to no exposure to many key pinniped pathogens. The expansion of human populations, agriculture, and industry along the Peruvian coast may lead to increased pathogen exposure from human, domestic, and wild animal sources. The naïve nature of this key population of South American fur seals raises concerns about potential risk for disease outbreaks.
Britton, A P; Redford, T; Bidulka, J J; Scouras, A P; Sojonky, K R; Zabek, E; Schwantje, H; Joseph, T
Wild animal reservoirs are an important source of emerging and zoonotic infection. Skunks (Mephitis mephitis) are a reservoir of skunk strain rabies virus in Canada, with the exception of some areas including the province of British Columbia (BC). Beyond rabies, the reservoir status of skunks for emerging and zoonotic pathogens in BC is unknown. From March 2011 to February 2015, 50 free-ranging skunks were necropsied and tested for 4 pathogens: influenza A, Aleutian disease virus (ADV), Leptospira spp. and Salmonella spp. Two skunks (4%) with respiratory disease caused by influenza A (H1N1) pdm09 were detected during the human flu season suggesting that skunks may represent a target population for reverse zoonosis of this strain of influenza A virus. High prevalence of ADV infection was detected (43/50, 86%). Two of the infected skunks exhibited Aleutian disease (AD) suggesting that skunks act as both a reservoir and a target population for the virus. Most studies of ADV have focused on the potential for infection of free-ranging species living near mink farms. Our study suggests that urban skunks may be a primary host for the virus independent of domestic mink. Whether skunks act as a reservoir of ADV infection for other peridomestic species will depend on host specificity of the viral strains. Leptospira interrogans was detected in 18% (9/49) of the skunks. Identification of the serovar(s) detected is needed to determine any public health risk of leptospirosis following exposure to infected skunks. Salmonella spp. was isolated from three of 43 skunks (7%), specifically S. Typhimurium, S. Muenchen and S. Enteritidis. These serotypes cause disease in humans, but the low prevalence of infection suggests there is a low risk for zoonotic transmission.
Matsunaga, James; Haake, David A.
Leptospirosis is a zoonosis with worldwide distribution caused by pathogenic spirochetes belonging to the genus Leptospira. The leptospiral life cycle involves transmission via freshwater and colonization of the renal tubules of their reservoir hosts. Infection requires adherence to cell surfaces and extracellular matrix components of host tissues. These host-pathogen interactions involve outer membrane proteins (OMPs) expressed on the bacterial surface. In this study, we developed an Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni strain Fiocruz L1-130 OMP microarray containing all predicted lipoproteins and transmembrane OMPs. A total of 401 leptospiral genes or their fragments were transcribed and translated in vitro and printed on nitrocellulose-coated glass slides. We investigated the potential of this protein microarray to screen for interactions between leptospiral OMPs and fibronectin (Fn). This approach resulted in the identification of the recently described fibronectin-binding protein, LIC10258 (MFn8, Lsa66), and 14 novel Fn-binding proteins, denoted Microarray Fn-binding proteins (MFns). We confirmed Fn binding of purified recombinant LIC11612 (MFn1), LIC10714 (MFn2), LIC11051 (MFn6), LIC11436 (MFn7), LIC10258 (MFn8, Lsa66), and LIC10537 (MFn9) by far-Western blot assays. Moreover, we obtained specific antibodies to MFn1, MFn7, MFn8 (Lsa66), and MFn9 and demonstrated that MFn1, MFn7, and MFn9 are expressed and surface exposed under in vitro growth conditions. Further, we demonstrated that MFn1, MFn4 (LIC12631, Sph2), and MFn7 enable leptospires to bind fibronectin when expressed in the saprophyte, Leptospira biflexa. Protein microarrays are valuable tools for high-throughput identification of novel host ligand-binding proteins that have the potential to play key roles in the virulence mechanisms of pathogens. PMID:22961849
Zeng, LingBing; Wang, Dongliang; Hu, NiYa; Zhu, Qing; Chen, Kaishen; Dong, Ke; Zhang, Yan; Yao, YuFeng; Guo, XiaoKui; Chang, Yung-Fu; Zhu, YongZhang
Reverse vaccinology (RV) has been widely used for screening of surface-exposed proteins (PSEs) of important pathogens, including outer membrane proteins (OMPs), and extracellular proteins (ECPs) as potential vaccine candidates. In this study, we applied a novel RV negative strategy and a pan-genome analysis for screening of PSEs from 17 L. interrogans strains covering 11 predominately epidemic serovars and 17 multilocus typing (MLST) sequence types (STs) worldwide. Our results showed, for instance, out of a total of 633 predicted PSEs in strain 56601, 92.8% were OMPs or ECPs (588/633). Among the 17 strains, 190 core PSEs, 913 dispensable PSEs and 861 unique PSEs were identified. Of the 190 PSEs, 121 were further predicted to be highly antigenic and thus may serve as potential vaccine candidates against leptospirosis. With the exception of LipL45, OmpL1, and LigB, the majority of the 121 PSEs were newly identified antigens. For example, hypothetical proteins BatC, LipL71, and the OmpA family proteins sharing many common features, such as surface-exposed localization, universal conservation, and eliciting strong antibody responses in patients, are regarded as the most promising vaccine antigens. Additionally, a wide array of potential virulence factors among the predicted PSEs including TonB-dependent receptor, sphingomyelinase 2, leucine-rich repeat protein, and 4 neighboring hypothetical proteins were identified as potential antigenicity, and deserve further investigation. Our results can contribute to the prediction of suitable antigens as potential vaccine candidates against leptospirosis and also provide further insights into mechanisms of leptospiral pathogenicity. In addition, our novel negative-screening strategy combined with pan-genome analysis can be a routine RV method applied to numerous other pathogens.
Martins-Pinheiro, Marinalva; Schons-Fonseca, Luciane; da Silva, Josefa B; Domingos, Renan H; Momo, Leonardo Hiroyuki Santos; Simões, Ana Carolina Quirino; Ho, Paulo Lee; da Costa, Renata M A
Leptospirosis is an emerging zoonosis with important economic and public health consequences and is caused by pathogenic leptospires. The genus Leptospira belongs to the order Spirochaetales and comprises saprophytic (L. biflexa), pathogenic (L. interrogans) and host-dependent (L. borgpetersenii) members. Here, we present an in silico search for DNA repair pathways in Leptospira spp. The relevance of such DNA repair pathways was assessed through the identification of mRNA levels of some genes during infection in animal model and after exposition to spleen cells. The search was performed by comparison of available Leptospira spp. genomes in public databases with known DNA repair-related genes. Leptospires exhibit some distinct and unexpected characteristics, for instance the existence of a redundant mechanism for repairing a chemically diverse spectrum of alkylated nucleobases, a new mutS-like gene and a new shorter version of uvrD. Leptospira spp. shares some characteristics from Gram-positive, as the presence of PcrA, two RecQ paralogs and two SSB proteins; the latter is considered a feature shared by naturally competent bacteria. We did not find a significant reduction in the number of DNA repair-related genes in both pathogenic and host-dependent species. Pathogenic leptospires were enriched for genes dedicated to base excision repair and non-homologous end joining. Their evolutionary history reveals a remarkable importance of lateral gene transfer events for the evolution of the genus. Up-regulation of specific DNA repair genes, including components of SOS regulon, during infection in animal model validates the critical role of DNA repair mechanisms for the complex interplay between host/pathogen.
Wasiński, Bernard; Sroka, Jacek; Wójcik-Fatla, Angelina; Zając, Violetta; Cisak, Ewa; Knap, Józef P; Sawczyn, Anna; Dutkiewicz, Jacek
Blood serum samples collected from randomly selected groups of 100 persons inhabiting rural community 'A' located in eastern Poland and exposed to floods by the Vistula river, and 98 persons inhabiting rural community 'B', also located in eastern Poland, but in the area not exposed to floods were examined by the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) for the presence of antibodies against 18 Leptospira serovars. Positive results showed 3% of serum samples collected from community 'A', while the seroprevalence in community 'B' was 9.2%, being insignificantly higher than in community 'A'. For both examined communities (n=198), a significant positive correlation was found between the prevalence and titer of seropositive response and age of examined people (r=0.145, p=0.042). No significant differences were found between the prevalence of positive reactions in males and females (p>0.05). The reactions with 10 serovars of Leptospira (Australis, Autumnalis, Hebdomadis, Hardjo, Sejroe, Zanoni, Bataviae, Bratislava, Canicola and Grippotyphosa), belonging to 3 species (L. interrogans, L. borgpetersenii, L. kirschneri), were found in the examined communities. From both communities, of 12 persons demonstrating positive results in MAT, 9 showed reaction with one serovar, 2 with two serovars and 1 with three serovars. The highest titers found during the examination did not exceeded 800. In conclusion, our results suggest that there is only a slight, if any, hazard of an leptospirosis epidemic after the flood that afflicted eastern Poland in the year 2010 and the general epidemiological situation of leptospirosis in eastern Poland. Although there does not seem to be any cause for concern, further research is needed.
Lessa-Aquino, Carolina; Lindow, Janet C.; Randall, Arlo; Wunder, Elsio; Pablo, Jozelyn; Nakajima, Rie; Jasinskas, Algis; Cruz, Jaqueline S.; Damião, Alcineia O.; Nery, Nívison; Ribeiro, Guilherme S.; Costa, Federico; Hagan, José E.; Reis, Mitermayer Galvão; Ko, Albert I.; Medeiros, Marco Alberto; Felgner, Philip L.
Background Leptospirosis is an important zoonotic disease worldwide. Humans usually present a mild non-specific febrile illness, but a proportion of them develop more severe outcomes, such as multi-organ failure, lung hemorrhage and death. Such complications are thought to depend on several factors, including the host immunity. Protective immunity is associated with humoral immune response, but little is known about the immune response mounted during naturally-acquired Leptospira infection. Methods and principal findings Here, we used protein microarray chip to profile the antibody responses of patients with severe and mild leptospirosis against the complete Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni predicted ORFeome. We discovered a limited number of immunodominant antigens, with 36 antigens specific to patients, of which 11 were potential serodiagnostic antigens, identified at acute phase, and 33 were potential subunit vaccine targets, detected after recovery. Moreover, we found distinct antibody profiles in patients with different clinical outcomes: in the severe group, overall IgM responses do not change and IgG responses increase over time, while both IgM and IgG responses remain stable in the mild patient group. Analyses of individual patients’ responses showed that >74% of patients in the severe group had significant IgG increases over time compared to 29% of patients in the mild group. Additionally, 90% of IgM responses did not change over time in the mild group, compared to ~51% in the severe group. Conclusions In the present study, we detected antibody profiles associated with disease severity and speculate that patients with mild disease were protected from severe outcomes due to pre-existing antibodies, while patients with severe leptospirosis demonstrated an antibody profile typical of first exposure. Our findings represent a significant advance in the understanding of the humoral immune response to Leptospira infection, and we have identified new
Moinet, Marie; Fournier-Chambrillon, Christine; André-Fontaine, Geneviève; Aulagnier, Stéphane; Mesplède, Alain; Blanchard, Béatrice; Descarsin, Véronique; Dumas, Philippe; Dumas, Yann; Coïc, Christophe; Couzi, Laurent; Fournier, Pascal
To study the possible role of disease in the decline of endangered European mink (Mustela lutreola), we conducted a survey of antibody prevalence and renal carriage of pathogenic leptospira (Leptospira interrogans sensu lato) using serum and kidney samples collected from 1990 to 2007 from several free-ranging small carnivores and farmed American mink (Mustela vison) in southwestern France. An indirect microscopic agglutination test using a panel of 16 serovars belonging to 6 serogroups (Australis, Autumnalis, Icterohæmorrhagiæ, Grippotyphosa, Panama, Sejroe) revealed antibodies in all species, with significant differences in antibody prevalences: 74% in European mink (n=99), 65.4% in European polecats (Mustela putorius, n=133), 86% in American mink (n=74), 89% in stone martens (Martes foina, n=19), 74% in pine martens (Martes martes, n=19), 35% in common genets (Genetta genetta, n=79), and 31% in farmed American mink (n=51). Serogroups Australis and Icterohæmorragiæ were dominant in most free-ranging species; serogroup Grippotyphosa had high prevalences in European mink. Such high antibody prevalences have never been reported. They are probably related to the large number of known reservoirs, rats (Rattus spp.), muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus), and coypu (Myocastor coypu), in the study area. The polymerase chain reaction test specific for pathogenic leptospiral DNA detected renal carriage in 23% of 34 European mink, 22% of 18 polecats, and 15% of 33 free-ranging American mink, with no significant differences. Renal carriage shows that mustelids may shed leptospira for short periods, but their epidemiologic role is probably limited. High antibody prevalences suggest that the disease is unlikely to be highly pathogenic for these species; however, chronic forms of the disease (abortions, renal lesions) could reduce the reproductive success or life span of infected animals. Further studies on the pathogenicity of leptospirosis in these populations are needed to
Koizumi, Nobuo; Muto, Maki Mizutani; Akachi, Shigehiro; Okano, Shou; Yamamoto, Seigo; Horikawa, Kazumi; Harada, Seiya; Funatsumaru, Sadayuki; Ohnishi, Makoto
Canine leptospirosis, which is caused by infection with pathogenic Leptospira species, occurs worldwide, but information regarding the causative Leptospira serotypes and genotypes and their effects on virulence in dogs remains limited. Monitoring acute leptospirosis in dogs as sentinels can also aid in estimating the risk of human leptospirosis, particularly when the disease is rare, as it currently is in Japan. Among 283 clinically suspected cases of leptospirosis diagnosed from August 2007 to March 2011 in Japan, 83 cases were laboratory diagnosed as leptospirosis by blood culture, a rise in antibody titres in paired sera using a microscopic agglutination test (MAT) and/or DNA detection using flaB-nested PCR. The infected dogs comprised hunting dogs (31 dogs) and companion animals (50 dogs) and two unknown; 63.4 % of the infected dogs were males. The mortality rate was 53.2 %. A rise of at least fourfold in MAT titre was detected in 30 dogs whose paired serum samples were obtained, and the predominant reactive serogroup was Hebdomadis (53.3 %), followed by Australis (16.7 %) and Autumnalis (16.7 %). Leptospira interrogans was isolated from 45 dogs of the following serogroups: Australis (16), Autumnalis (six), Canicola (one), Hebdomadis (21) and Icterohaemorrhagiae (one). All of these serogroups caused lethal infections (57.1-100 %). Genetic heterogeneity was demonstrated in serogroups Australis, Autumnalis and Hebdomadis by multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and/or RFLP analysis based on PFGE. In serogroup Hebdomadis, each genotype determined by MLST had a unique mortality rate in the infected dogs. Although classic canine leptospirosis is associated with serovars Canicola and Icterohaemorrhagiae, serogroup Hebdomadis has become the predominant serogroup causing high mortality in Japan. This study suggests that the virulence of members of serogroup Hebdomadis in dogs may be associated with the genotypes in this serogroup.
Dhliwayo, Solomon; Matope, Gift; Marabini, Lisa; Dutlow, Keith; Pfukenyi, Davis M
A cross-sectional study was conducted to investigate seroprevalence of canine leptospirosis in urban Harare and five selected rural communities in Zimbabwe and to assess public awareness of the disease. Sera from randomly selected dogs were tested for antibodies to the serovars Canicola, Grippotyphosa, Icterohaemorrhagiae and Pomona of Leptospira interrogans using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Clinical chemistry was performed on all seropositive and selected seronegative sera to screen for hepatic and renal insufficiency. A questionnaire- based survey was conducted in Harare to assess dog owners' awareness of leptospirosis and other zoonoses. Overall, 15.6% of sera samples tested (39 out of 250; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 11.0% - 20.2%) were positive for leptospiral antibodies. A significantly higher (p < 0.05) seroprevalence was recorded in urban dogs than in rural dogs (25% vs. 11.2%). No significant difference in seroprevalence was observed amongst dogs from different rural communities or between sexes of dogs. There was a significant association between seropositivity and hepatic and/or renal insufficiency (p < 0.01), with dogs having hepatic and/or renal insufficiency being approximately twice as likely to be seropositive (relative risk = 1.96; 95% CI: 1.3-3.0). Of the dog owners, 78.8% (119/151) were aware of zoonoses. Except for rabies (92.4%), awareness of leptospirosis (5.0%) and other zoonoses amongst these owners was low. This study showed that leptospirosis was present and represented a risk to dogs from urban Harare and the selected rural communities in Zimbabwe. Availing training programmes for dog owners would be beneficial in improving disease control and reducing the public health risk of pet zoonoses.
Mason, Meghan R.; Encina, Carolina; Sreevatsan, Srinand; Muñoz-Zanzi, Claudia
Background Leptospirosis is a neglected zoonosis affecting animals and humans caused by infection with Leptospira. The bacteria can survive outside of hosts for long periods of time in soil and water. While identification of Leptospira species from human cases and animal reservoirs are increasingly reported, little is known about the diversity of pathogenic Leptospira species in the environment and how surveillance of the environment might be used for monitoring and controlling disease. Methods and Findings Water samples (n = 104) were collected from the peri-domestic environment of 422 households from farms, rural villages, and urban slums participating in a broader study on the eco-epidemiology of leptospirosis in the Los Rios Region, Chile, between October 2010 and April 2012. The secY region of samples, previously detected as pathogenic Leptospira by PCR, was amplified and sequenced. Sequences were aligned using ClustalW in MEGA, and a minimum spanning tree was created in PHYLOViZ using the goeBURST algorithm to assess sequence similarity. Sequences from four clinical isolates, 17 rodents, and 20 reference strains were also included in the analysis. Overall, water samples contained L. interrogans, L. kirschneri, and L. weilii, with descending frequency. All species were found in each community type. The distribution of the species differed by the season in which the water samples were obtained. There was no evidence that community-level prevalence of Leptospira in dogs, rodents, or livestock influenced pathogen diversity in the water samples. Conclusions This study reports the presence of pathogenic Leptospira in the peri-domestic environment of households in three community types and the differences in Leptospira diversity at the community level. Systematic environmental surveillance of Leptospira can be used for detecting changes in pathogen diversity and to identify and monitor contaminated areas where an increased risk of human infection exists. PMID
Chiriboga, Jorge; Miller, Erin; Olivas, Sonora; Birdsell, Dawn; Hepp, Crystal; Hornstra, Heidie; Schupp, James M.; Morales, Melba; Gonzalez, Manuel; Reyes, Soraya; de la Cruz, Carmen; Keim, Paul; Hartskeerl, Rudy; Trueba, Gabriel; Pearson, Talima
Background Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease responsible for high morbidity around the world, especially in tropical and low income countries. Rats are thought to be the main vector of human leptospirosis in urban settings. However, differences between urban and low-income rural communities provide additional insights into the epidemiology of the disease. Methodology/Principal findings Our study was conducted in two low-income rural communities near the coast of Ecuador. We detected and characterized infectious leptospira DNA in a wide variety of samples using new real time quantitative PCR assays and amplicon sequencing. We detected infectious leptospira in a high percentage of febrile patients (14.7%). In contrast to previous studies on leptospirosis risk factors, higher positivity was not found in rats (3.0%) but rather in cows (35.8%) and pigs (21.1%). Six leptospira species were identified (L. borgpetersenii, L kirschnerii, L santarosai, L. interrogans, L noguchii, and an intermediate species within the L. licerasiae and L. wolffii clade) and no significant differences in the species of leptospira present in each animal species was detected (χ2 = 9.89, adj.p-value = 0.27). Conclusions/Significance A large portion of the world’s human population lives in low-income, rural communities, however, there is limited information about leptospirosis transmission dynamics in these settings. In these areas, exposure to peridomestic livestock is particularly common and high prevalence of infectious leptospira in cows and pigs suggest that they may be the most important reservoir for human transmission. Genotyping clinical samples show that multiple species of leptospira are involved in human disease. As these genotypes were also detected in samples from a variety of animals, genotype data must be used in conjunction with epidemiological data to provide evidence of transmission and the importance of different potential leptospirosis reservoirs. PMID:27622673
Goldstein, Tracey; Gill, Verena A; Tuomi, Pam; Monson, Daniel; Burdin, Alexander; Conrad, Patricia A; Dunn, J Lawrence; Field, Cara; Johnson, Christine; Jessup, David A; Bodkin, James; Doroff, Angela M
Northern sea otter (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) abundance has decreased dramatically over portions of southwest Alaska, USA, since the mid-1980s, and this stock is currently listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. In contrast, adjacent populations in south central Alaska, USA, and Russia have been stable to increasing during the same period. Sea otters bordering the area classified in the recent decline were live-captured during 2004-2006 at Bering Island, Russia, and the Kodiak Archipelago, Alaska, USA, to evaluate differences in general health and current exposure status to marine and terrestrial pathogens. Although body condition was lower in animals captured at Bering Island, Russia, than it was at Kodiak, USA, clinical pathology values did not reveal differences in general health between the two regions. Low prevalences of antibodies (<5%) were found in Kodiak, USA, and on Bering Island, Russia, to Toxoplasma gondii, Sarcocystis neurona, and Leptospira interrogans. Exposure to phocine herpesvirus-1 was found in both Kodiak, USA (15.2%), and Bering Island, Russia (2.3%). Antibodies to Brucella spp. were found in 28% of the otters tested on Bering Island, Russia, compared with only 2.7% of the samples from Kodiak, USA. Prevalence of exposure to Phocine distemper virus (PDV) was 41% in Kodiak, USA, but 0% on Bering Island, Russia. Archived sera from southwest and south-central Alaska dating back to 1989 were negative for PDV, indicating exposure occurred in sea otters in Kodiak, USA, in recent years. Because PDV can be highly pathogenic in naïve and susceptible marine mammal populations, tissues should be examined to explore the contribution of this virus to otter deaths. Our results reveal an increase in exposure to pathogens in sea otters in Kodiak, Alaska, USA, since the 1990 s.
Zeng, LingBing; Wang, Dongliang; Hu, NiYa; Zhu, Qing; Chen, Kaishen; Dong, Ke; Zhang, Yan; Yao, YuFeng; Guo, XiaoKui; Chang, Yung-Fu; Zhu, YongZhang
Reverse vaccinology (RV) has been widely used for screening of surface-exposed proteins (PSEs) of important pathogens, including outer membrane proteins (OMPs), and extracellular proteins (ECPs) as potential vaccine candidates. In this study, we applied a novel RV negative strategy and a pan-genome analysis for screening of PSEs from 17 L. interrogans strains covering 11 predominately epidemic serovars and 17 multilocus typing (MLST) sequence types (STs) worldwide. Our results showed, for instance, out of a total of 633 predicted PSEs in strain 56601, 92.8% were OMPs or ECPs (588/633). Among the 17 strains, 190 core PSEs, 913 dispensable PSEs and 861 unique PSEs were identified. Of the 190 PSEs, 121 were further predicted to be highly antigenic and thus may serve as potential vaccine candidates against leptospirosis. With the exception of LipL45, OmpL1, and LigB, the majority of the 121 PSEs were newly identified antigens. For example, hypothetical proteins BatC, LipL71, and the OmpA family proteins sharing many common features, such as surface-exposed localization, universal conservation, and eliciting strong antibody responses in patients, are regarded as the most promising vaccine antigens. Additionally, a wide array of potential virulence factors among the predicted PSEs including TonB-dependent receptor, sphingomyelinase 2, leucine-rich repeat protein, and 4 neighboring hypothetical proteins were identified as potential antigenicity, and deserve further investigation. Our results can contribute to the prediction of suitable antigens as potential vaccine candidates against leptospirosis and also provide further insights into mechanisms of leptospiral pathogenicity. In addition, our novel negative-screening strategy combined with pan-genome analysis can be a routine RV method applied to numerous other pathogens. PMID:28352257
Osikowicz, Lynn; McKee, Clifton; Kuzmin, Ivan; Kandaurov, Andrei; Babuadze, Giorgi; Natradze, Ioseb; Imnadze, Paata; Kosoy, Michael
Bats are important reservoirs for many zoonotic pathogens. However, no surveys of bacterial pathogens in bats have been performed in the Caucasus region. To understand the occurrence and distribution of bacterial infections in these mammals, 218 bats belonging to eight species collected from four regions of Georgia were examined for Bartonella, Brucella, Leptospira, and Yersinia using molecular approaches. Bartonella DNA was detected in 77 (35%) bats from all eight species and was distributed in all four regions. The prevalence ranged 6–50% per bat species. The Bartonella DNA represented 25 unique genetic variants that clustered into 21 lineages. Brucella DNA was detected in two Miniopterus schreibersii bats and in two Myotis blythii bats, all of which were from Imereti (west-central region). Leptospira DNA was detected in 25 (13%) bats that included four M. schreibersii bats and 21 M. blythii bats collected from two regions. The Leptospira sequences represented five genetic variants with one of them being closely related to the zoonotic pathogen L. interrogans (98.6% genetic identity). No Yersinia DNA was detected in the bats. Mixed infections were observed in several cases. One M. blythii bat and one M. schreibersii bat were co-infected with Bartonella, Brucella, and Leptospira; one M. blythii bat and one M. schreibersii bat were co-infected with Bartonella and Brucella; 15 M. blythii bats and three M. schreibersii bats were co-infected with Bartonella and Leptospira. Our results suggest that bats in Georgia are exposed to multiple bacterial infections. Further studies are needed to evaluate pathogenicity of these agents to bats and their zoonotic potential. PMID:28129398
Ludwig, Christina; Claassen, Manfred; Schmidt, Alexander; Aebersold, Ruedi
For many research questions in modern molecular and systems biology, information about absolute protein quantities is imperative. This information includes, for example, kinetic modeling of processes, protein turnover determinations, stoichiometric investigations of protein complexes, or quantitative comparisons of different proteins within one sample or across samples. To date, the vast majority of proteomic studies are limited to providing relative quantitative comparisons of protein levels between limited numbers of samples. Here we describe and demonstrate the utility of a targeting MS technique for the estimation of absolute protein abundance in unlabeled and nonfractionated cell lysates. The method is based on selected reaction monitoring (SRM) mass spectrometry and the “best flyer” hypothesis, which assumes that the specific MS signal intensity of the most intense tryptic peptides per protein is approximately constant throughout a whole proteome. SRM-targeted best flyer peptides were selected for each protein from the peptide precursor ion signal intensities from directed MS data. The most intense transitions per peptide were selected from full MS/MS scans of crude synthetic analogs. We used Monte Carlo cross-validation to systematically investigate the accuracy of the technique as a function of the number of measured best flyer peptides and the number of SRM transitions per peptide. We found that a linear model based on the two most intense transitions of the three best flying peptides per proteins (TopPep3/TopTra2) generated optimal results with a cross-correlated mean fold error of 1.8 and a squared Pearson coefficient R2 of 0.88. Applying the optimized model to lysates of the microbe Leptospira interrogans, we detected significant protein abundance changes of 39 target proteins upon antibiotic treatment, which correlate well with literature values. The described method is generally applicable and exploits the inherent performance advantages of SRM
Goldstein, T.; Gill, V.A.; Tuomi, Pamela A.; Monson, D.; Burdin, A.; Conrad, P.A.; Dunn, J.L.; Field, C.; Johnson, Chad; Jessup, David A.; Bodkin, J.; Doroff, A.M.
Northern sea otter (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) abundance has decreased dramatically over portions of southwest Alaska, USA, since the mid-1980s, and this stock is currently listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. In contrast, adjacent populations in south central Alaska, USA, and Russia have been stable to increasing during the same period. Sea otters bordering the area classified in the recent decline were live-captured during 2004–2006 at Bering Island, Russia, and the Kodiak Archipelago, Alaska, USA, to evaluate differences in general health and current exposure status to marine and terrestrial pathogens. Although body condition was lower in animals captured at Bering Island, Russia, than it was at Kodiak, USA, clinical pathology values did not reveal differences in general health between the two regions. Low prevalences of antibodies (>5%) were found in Kodiak, USA, and on Bering Island, Russia, to Toxoplasma gondii, Sarcocystis neurona, and Leptospira interrogans. Exposure to phocine herpesvirus-1 was found in both Kodiak, USA (15.2%), and Bering Island, Russia (2.3%). Antibodies to Brucella spp. were found in 28% of the otters tested on Bering Island, Russia, compared with only 2.7% of the samples from Kodiak, USA. Prevalence of exposure to Phocine distemper virus (PDV) was 41% in Kodiak, USA, but 0% on Bering Island, Russia. Archived sera from southwest and south-central Alaska dating back to 1989 were negative for PDV, indicating exposure occurred in sea otters in Kodiak, USA, in recent years. Because PDV can be highly pathogenic in naïve and susceptible marine mammal populations, tissues should be examined to explore the contribution of this virus to otter deaths. Our results reveal an increase in exposure to pathogens in sea otters in Kodiak, Alaska, USA, since the 1990s.
Prescott, J F; Miller, R B; Nicholson, V M; Martin, S W; Lesnick, T
Sera were collected using a systematic random sampling from 348 cattle herds in Ontario, in proportion to the cattle population in different areas. One cow in five from 296 dairy herds and one in three from 52 beef herds were sampled. The sera were analyzed for prevalence of antibodies to Leptospira interrogans serovar grippotyphosa, hardjo, icterohaemorhagiae and pomona using the microscopic agglutination test. Herd seroprevalence (one or more animals with titer greater than or equal to 80) in beef and dairy herds combined was grippotyphosa 2%, hardjo 13.8%, icterohaemorrhagiae 10.1% and pomona 25.8%; 39% of all herds showed evidence of leptospiral infection with one or more serovars; 44.2% of 52 beef herds had serological evidence of infection with serovar hardjo compared to 8.4% of 296 dairy herds (P less than 0.0001). Seroprevalence of other serovars was not significantly different between beef and dairy herds. The proportion of beef animals seropositive for hardjo and for pomona increased with age, particularly for hardjo; 26.5% of beef animals aged nine years or over were seropositive for hardjo. Dairy animals showed a significant rise of hardjo but not pomona titers with age. The seroprevalence of pomona infection was significantly higher in dairy cattle in eastern Ontario than in other regions. Thirty-four (6.1%) of 553 aborted bovine fetuses had leptospires detected by immunofluorescence techniques. Sixty-five percent of these fetuses were from submissions made between November and January. Leptospires were identified as serovar hardjo by specific immunofluorescence. There appeared, however, to be a paradoxical serological response in that eight aborting cows had antibody titers to pomona rather than hardjo.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:3370556
Fang, Fang; Collins-Emerson, Julie M; Heuer, Cord; Hill, Fraser I; Tisdall, David J; Wilson, Peter R; Benschop, Jackie
A study was performed to investigate interlaboratory test agreement between a research and a commercial veterinary diagnostic laboratory on blood and urine samples, and to investigate test agreement between blood, urine, and kidney samples (research laboratory) for leptospirosis diagnosis. Samples were sourced from 399 sheep and 146 beef cattle from a local abattoir. Interlaboratory agreement for real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) results on urine samples was almost perfect (kappa = 0.90), despite the use of different amplification targets (DNA gyrase subunit B gene vs. 16s ribosomal RNA gene), chemistries (SYTO9 vs. TaqMan probe), and pre-PCR processing. Interlaboratory agreement for microscopic agglutination test (MAT) positivity was almost perfect (kappa = 0.93) for Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo subtype Hardjobovis (Hardjobovis) but moderate (kappa = 0.53) for Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona (Pomona). Among animals that had different titers recorded, higher Hardjobovis and lower Pomona titers were reported by the commercial laboratory than by the research laboratory (P < 0.005). These interlaboratory comparisons can assist researchers and diagnosticians in interpreting the sometimes discrepant test results. Within the research laboratory, the comparison of qPCR results on urine and kidney showed almost perfect agreement (kappa = 0.84), suggesting that the qPCR on these 2 specimens can be used interchangeably. The agreement between MAT positivity and urine and kidney qPCR results was fair (kappa = 0.32 and kappa = 0.33, respectively). However, the prevalence ratio of urine and kidney qPCR positivity in Hardjobovis-seropositive versus Hardjobovis-seronegative sheep indicated that Hardjobovis seropositivity found in sheep may be able to predict shedding or renal carriage.
Flores, Byron J; Pérez-Sánchez, Tania; Fuertes, Héctor; Sheleby-Elías, Jessica; Múzquiz, José Luis; Jirón, William; Duttmann, Christianne; Halaihel, Nabil
Leptospirosis is one of the most extended zoonosis worldwide and humans become infected most commonly through contact with the urine of carrier animals, either directly or via contaminated water or soil. The aim in this study was to analyse the epidemiological behaviour of Leptospira spp., from domestic animals around the sites of human leptospirosis cases in Nicaragua, from 2007 through 2013. We report the results of a cross-sectional epidemiological study with a non-probability sampling of blood (n=3050) and urine (n=299) from Domestic Animals (DA) around the sites of human leptospirosis cases in Nicaragua. We analysed data obtained through Microscopic Agglutination Test (MAT), in-vitro culture, real time PCR and sequencing of lfb1 locus. Frequencies of 30.31% (95% CI: 28.66-31.95) and 15.38% (95% CI: 11.12-19.64) were obtained from serological test and from in-vitro culture, respectively. Although similar frequencies from serology test (P≥0.05) were found in DA species, in-vitro culture frequencies were significantly higher from bovine, equine and sheep (P<0.05) in comparison with swine and canine species. Ten serogroups of pathogenic Leptospira spp. were encountered, with the highest presence of Icterohaemorrhagiae serogroup 34.65% (95% CI: 29.35-39.94). We identified 7 samples homologous to L. interrogans species Pyrogenes serovar and 3 samples as L. noguchii Louisiana or Panama serovars by analysis of lfb1 sequences. We were able to establish a temporal and spatial correlation from DA and cumulative incidence of human cases. Therefore an effective epidemiological surveillance should be implemented with a specific control program toward DA in order to reduce human leptospirosis incidence.
Bahaman, A R; Ibrahim, A L; Adam, H
A cross-sectional serological survey of domestic animals in West Malaysia revealed that 25.5% of the animals examined had agglutinating antibodies to one or more antigens belonging to Leptospira interrogans. Significant prevalence of infection was observed in cattle (40.5%), buffaloes (31%) and pigs (16%). The Sejroe serogroup was shown to be the principal one involved in cattle and buffaloes, and to a lesser extent the Tarassovi and Pomona serogroups. Evidence of infection in domestic animals by strains bearing the other seven antigens appeared insignificant and was indicative of sporadic infection. A majority of the large (semi-intensive) cattle and buffalo farms demonstrated a high prevalence of leptospiral infection. In both species of domestic animals mentioned above, the prevalence of infection was significantly higher (P = 0.01) in the semi-intensive farms than in the smallholdings. Amongst cattle, the droughtmasters had the highest prevalence whilst the Kedah-Kelantan (an indigenous breed) had the lowest prevalence of leptospiral infection. In general, the temperate breeds of cattle had a significantly (P = 0.01) higher prevalence of infection than local breeds. Leptospiral infection in goats and sheep was shown to be sporadic, and the Pomona serogroup was the principal leptospiral serogroup involved in these small ruminants. The prevalence of infection in pigs was observed to decline during the study period, and it is suspected that pigs in West Malaysia are the maintenance host for serovar pomona whilst cattle are the maintenance host for serovar hardjo. Overall, it appears that domestic animals in Malaysia will play a bigger role in the epidemiology of leptospiral infection with the advent of sophisticated farming.
Minakshi, Rinki; Padhan, Kartika; Rehman, Safikur; Hassan, Md Imtaiyaz; Ahmad, Faizan
The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) is a positive stranded RNA virus with ∼30kb genome. Among all open reading frames (orfs) of this virus, the orf3a is the largest, and encodes a protein of 274 amino acids, named as 3a protein. Sequence analysis suggests that the orf3a aligned to one calcium pump present in Plasmodium falciparum and the enzyme glutamine synthetase found in Leptospira interrogans. This sequence similarity was found to be limited only to amino acid residues 209-264 which form the cytoplasmic domain of the orf3a. Furthermore, this region was predicted to be involved in the calcium binding. Owing to this hypothesis, we were driven to establish its calcium binding property in vitro. Here, we expressed and purified the cytoplasmic domain of the 3a protein, called Cyto3a, as a recombinant His-tagged protein in the E. coli. The calcium binding nature was established by performing various staining methods such as ruthenium red and stains-all. (45)Ca overlay method was also done to further support the data. Since the 3a protein forms ion channels, we were interested to see any conformational changes occurring in the Cyot3a upon calcium binding, using fluorescence spectroscopy and circular dichroism. These studies clearly indicate a significant change in the conformation of the Cyto3a protein after binding with calcium. Our results strongly suggest that the cytoplasmic domain of the 3a protein of SARS-CoV binds calcium in vitro, causing a change in protein conformation.
Menezes, Angela; Woods, Kate; Chanthongthip, Anisone; Dittrich, Sabine; Opoku-Boateng, Agatha; Kimuli, Maimuna; Chalker, Victoria
Background Rapid typing of Leptospira is currently impaired by requiring time consuming culture of leptospires. The objective of this study was to develop an assay that provides multilocus sequence typing (MLST) data direct from patient specimens while minimising costs for subsequent sequencing. Methodology and Findings An existing PCR based MLST scheme was modified by designing nested primers including anchors for facilitated subsequent sequencing. The assay was applied to various specimen types from patients diagnosed with leptospirosis between 2014 and 2015 in the United Kingdom (UK) and the Lao Peoples Democratic Republic (Lao PDR). Of 44 clinical samples (23 serum, 6 whole blood, 3 buffy coat, 12 urine) PCR positive for pathogenic Leptospira spp. at least one allele was amplified in 22 samples (50%) and used for phylogenetic inference. Full allelic profiles were obtained from ten specimens, representing all sample types (23%). No nonspecific amplicons were observed in any of the samples. Of twelve PCR positive urine specimens three gave full allelic profiles (25%) and two a partial profile. Phylogenetic analysis allowed for species assignment. The predominant species detected was L. interrogans (10/14 and 7/8 from UK and Lao PDR, respectively). All other species were detected in samples from only one country (Lao PDR: L. borgpetersenii [1/8]; UK: L. kirschneri [1/14], L. santarosai [1/14], L. weilii [2/14]). Conclusion Typing information of pathogenic Leptospira spp. was obtained directly from a variety of clinical samples using a modified MLST assay. This assay negates the need for time-consuming culture of Leptospira prior to typing and will be of use both in surveillance, as single alleles enable species determination, and outbreaks for the rapid identification of clusters. PMID:27654037
Winslow, W E; Merry, D J; Pirc, M L; Devine, P L
The PanBio Leptospira immunoglobulin M (IgM) enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) is a commercially available screening test for the diagnosis of acute leptospiral infection. The ability of the test to diagnose early or recent Leptospira interrogans infection was assessed by testing sera with known microagglutination test (MAT) titers to serovars pomona, hardjo, copenhageni, and australis. The IgM ELISA detected all 41 cases of early or recent leptospiral infection (sensitivity, 100%), with a positive ELISA result seen in many cases before MAT antibody titers reached 1:50. Thirty-eight of 41 patients showed seroconversion (fourfold or greater increase in titer by MAT, 2 of 41 patients had a single sample with elevated titer, and 1 patient from whom leptospires were isolated from a blood sample failed to show MAT titers, despite a seroconversion (negative to positive result) in the ELISA. Follow-up sera obtained from 8 of 12 patients (67%) for 3 to 48 months after the acute stage of illness showed persisting IgM antibody. However, the range of levels detected in these samples (maximum ELISA ratio, 2.0) was lower than the range seen when infection was recent. Reactivity in the IgM ELISA was observed for only 1 of 59 serum samples from asymptomatic donors (specificity, 98%) and 16 of 233 serum samples from patients with Ross River virus, brucella, Epstein-Barr virus, cytomegalovirus, mycoplasma, Q-fever, toxoplasma, hepatitis A virus, Treponema pallidum, or Borrelia burgdorferi infection (specificity, 93%), with the majority of these patients showing lower levels of IgM in comparison to those in patients with leptospiral infection. We conclude that this ELISA is sufficiently sensitive for use as an initial screen for leptospiral infections, with subsequent confirmation of positive test results by MAT. PMID:9230359
, L. interrogans and L. kirschneri revealed distinctive, reproducible differentiating peaks for seven leptospiral strains which represent seven serovars. Results obtained by MALDI-TOF MS were confirmed by MLST and 16S rRNA gene sequencing. PMID:22925589
Allan, Kathryn J.; Biggs, Holly M.; Halliday, Jo E. B.; Kazwala, Rudovick R.; Maro, Venance P.; Cleaveland, Sarah; Crump, John A.
Background Leptospirosis is an important but neglected bacterial zoonosis that has been largely overlooked in Africa. In this systematic review, we aimed to summarise and compare current knowledge of: (1) the geographic distribution, prevalence, incidence and diversity of acute human leptospirosis in Africa; and (2) the geographic distribution, host range, prevalence and diversity of Leptospira spp. infection in animal hosts in Africa. Methods Following Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines, we searched for studies that described (1) acute human leptospirosis and (2) pathogenic Leptospira spp. infection in animals. We performed a literature search using eight international and regional databases for English and non-English articles published between January 1930 to October 2014 that met out pre-defined inclusion criteria and strict case definitions. Results and Discussion We identified 97 studies that described acute human leptospirosis (n = 46) or animal Leptospira infection (n = 51) in 26 African countries. The prevalence of acute human leptospirosis ranged from 2 3% to 19 8% (n = 11) in hospital patients with febrile illness. Incidence estimates were largely restricted to the Indian Ocean islands (3 to 101 cases per 100,000 per year (n = 6)). Data from Tanzania indicate that human disease incidence is also high in mainland Africa (75 to 102 cases per 100,000 per year). Three major species (Leptospira borgpetersenii, L. interrogans and L. kirschneri) are predominant in reports from Africa and isolates from a diverse range of serogroups have been reported in human and animal infections. Cattle appear to be important hosts of a large number of Leptospira serogroups in Africa, but few data are available to allow comparison of Leptospira infection in linked human and animal populations. We advocate a ‘One Health’ approach to promote multidisciplinary research efforts to improve understanding of the animal to human
Matsunaga, James; Barocchi, Michele A.; Croda, Julio; Young, Tracy A.; Sanchez, Yolanda; Siqueira, Isadora; Bolin, Carole A.; Reis, Mitermayer G.; Riley, Lee W.; Haake, David A.; Ko, Albert I.
Summary Proteins with bacterial immunoglobulin-like (Big) domains, such as the Yersinia pseudotuberculosis invasin and Escherichia coli intimin, are surface-expressed proteins that mediate host mammalian cell invasion or attachment. Here, we report the identification and characterization of a new family of Big domain proteins, referred to as Lig (leptospiral Ig-like) proteins, in pathogenic Leptospira. Screening of L. interrogans and L. kirschneri expression libraries with sera from leptospirosis patients identified 13 lambda phage clones that encode tandem repeats of the 90 amino acid Big domain. Two lig genes, designated ligA and ligB, and one pseudo-gene, ligC, were identified. The ligA and ligB genes encode amino-terminal lipoprotein signal peptides followed by 10 or 11 Big domain repeats and, in the case of ligB, a unique carboxy-terminal non-repeat domain. The organization of ligC is similar to that of ligB but contains mutations that disrupt the reading frame. The lig sequences are present in pathogenic but not saprophytic Leptospira species. LigA and LigB are expressed by a variety of virulent leptospiral strains. Loss of Lig protein and RNA transcript expression is correlated with the observed loss of virulence during culture attenuation of pathogenic strains. High-pressure freeze substitution followed by immunocytochemical electron microscopy confirmed that the Lig proteins were localized to the bacterial surface. Immunoblot studies with patient sera found that the Lig proteins are a major antigen recognized during the acute host infection. These observations demonstrate that the Lig proteins are a newly identified surface protein of pathogenic Leptospira, which by analogy to other bacterial immunoglobulin superfamily virulence factors, may play a role in host cell attachment and invasion during leptospiral pathogenesis. PMID:12890019
PREVALENCE AND CHARACTERISTICS OF ESCHERICHIA COLI AND SALMONELLA SPP. IN THE FECES OF WILD URBAN NORWAY AND BLACK RATS (RATTUS NORVEGICUS AND RATTUS RATTUS) FROM AN INNER-CITY NEIGHBORHOOD OF VANCOUVER, CANADA.
Himsworth, Chelsea G; Zabek, Erin; Desruisseau, Andrea; Parmley, E Jane; Reid-Smith, Richard; Jardine, Claire M; Tang, Patrick; Patrick, David M
Although rat feces are widely suspected to be a source of pathogenic bacteria, few investigators have studied fecal pathogens in rats. We investigated the prevalence and characteristics of Escherichia coli and Salmonella spp. in Norway and black rats (Rattus norvegicus and Rattus rattus, respectively) from an urban neighborhood of Vancouver, Canada, collected September 2011-August 2012. Colon content was cultured for E. coli and Salmonella spp. and screened for the seven most-common enteropathogenic Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) serotypes by PCR. Isolates were tested for antimicrobial resistance and Salmonella isolates were serotyped. We detected E. coli in 397/633 (62.7%) urban rats. Forty-one of 397 (6.5%) E. coli isolates were resistant to ≥ 1 antimicrobial while 17 (4.3%) were multidrug resistant (including two isolates demonstrating extended-spectrum β-lactamase resistance). Ten of 633 (1.6%) urban rats were carrying STEC serotypes including O145, O103, O26, and O45. Norway rats were more likely to be carrying E. coli compared to black rats, and there was geographic clustering of specific resistance patterns and STEC serotypes. Salmonella spp. were detected in 3/633 (0.5%) rats including serotypes Derby, Indiana, and Enteritidis. In contrast to zoonotic pathogens for which rats are the natural reservoir (e.g., Leptospira interrogans, Rickettsia typhi, Seoul virus), rats likely acquired E. coli and Salmonella spp. from their environment. The ability of rats to be a 'sponge' for environmental pathogens has received little consideration, and the ecology and public health significance of these organisms in rats requires further investigation.
Rago, Virginia; Uhart, Marcela
Leptospirosis is the most widespread zoonotic disease in the world. It is caused by pathogenic spirochetes of the genus Leptospira spp. and is maintained in nature through chronic renal infection of carrier animals. Rodents and other small mammals are the main reservoirs. Information on leptospirosis in marine mammals is scarce; however, cases of leptospirosis have been documented in pinniped populations from the Pacific coast of North America from southern California to British Columbia. We report the isolation of a Leptospira spp. strain, here named Manara, from a kidney sample obtained from a Southern Right Whale (Eubalaena australis) calf, which stranded dead in Playa Manara, Península Valdés, Argentina. This strain showed motility and morphology typical of the genus Leptospira spp. under dark-field microscopy; and grew in Ellinghausen-McCullough-Johnson-Harris (EMJH) medium and Fletcher medium after 90 days of incubation at 28°C. Considering the source of this bacterium, we tested its ability to grow in Fletcher medium diluted with seawater at different percentages (1%, 3%, 5%, 7% and 10% v/v). Bacterial growth was detected 48 h after inoculation of Fletcher medium supplemented with 5% sea water, demonstrating the halophilic nature of the strain Manara. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences placed this novel strain within the radiation of the pathogenic species of the genus Leptospira spp., with sequence similarities within the range 97–100%, and closely related to L. interrogans. Two different PCR protocols targeting genus-specific pathogenic genes (G1-G2, B64I-B64II and LigB) gave positive results, which indicates that the strain Manara is likely pathogenic. Further studies are needed to confirm this possibility as well as determine its serogroup. These results could modify our understanding of the epidemiology of this zoonosis. Until now, the resistance and ability to grow in seawater for long periods of time had been proven for the strain
Dunbar, M R; Velarde, R; Gregg, M A; Bray, M
During 1996 and 1997, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service conducted a study to determine the cause(s) of population decline and low survival of pronghorn antelope (Antilocapra americana) fawns on Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge (HMNAR) located in southeastern Oregon (USA). As part of that study, blood, fecal, and tissue samples from 104 neonatal fawns, 40 adult does, and nine adult male pronghorns were collected to conduct a health evaluation of the population. Physiological parameters related to nutrition and/or disease were studied. No abnormalities were found in the complete blood cell counts of adults (n = 40) or fawns (n = 44 to 67). Serum total protein and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) levels were lower compared to other pronghorn populations. Does had mean BUN values significantly lower (P < 0.001) in December 1996 than March 1997. Serum copper (Cu) levels in does (range 0.39 to 0.74 ppm) were considered marginal when compared to domestic animals and other wild ungulates. Fawns had low (0.28 ppm) Cu levels at birth and reached the does' marginal values in about 3 days. Whole blood, serum and liver selenium (Se) levels were considered marginal to low in most segments of the pronghorn population. However, serum levels of vitamin E (range 1.98 to 3.27 microg/ml), as determined from the does captured in March, were apparently sufficient to offset any signs of Se deficiency. No clinical signs of Cu or Se deficiency were observed. Fifty-five of 87 dead fawns were necropsied. Trauma, due to predation by coyotes (Canis latrans), accounted for 62% of the mortality during mid-May to mid-July of each year. Other causes included predation by golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos) (4%), dystocia (2%), septicemic pasteurellosis (4%), starvation (5%), and unknown (23%). Adult females were tested for serum neutralizing antibodies to Brucella spp. (n = 20, negative), Leptospira interrogans (n = 20, negative), bluetongue virus (n = 20, 35% positive), epizootic hemorrhagic
Pinne, Marija; Choy, Henry A.; Haake, David A.
Pathogenic Leptospira spp. shed in the urine of reservoir hosts into freshwater can be transmitted to a susceptible host through skin abrasions or mucous membranes causing leptospirosis. The infection process involves the ability of leptospires to adhere to cell surface and extracellular matrix components, a crucial step for dissemination and colonization of host tissues. Therefore, the elucidation of novel mediators of host-pathogen interaction is important in the discovery of virulence factors involved in the pathogenesis of leptospirosis. In this study, we assess the functional roles of transmembrane outer membrane proteins OmpL36 (LIC13166), OmpL37 (LIC12263), and OmpL47 (LIC13050), which we recently identified on the leptospiral surface. We determine the capacity of these proteins to bind to host tissue components by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. OmpL37 binds elastin preferentially, exhibiting dose-dependent, saturating binding to human skin (Kd, 104±19 nM) and aortic elastin (Kd, 152±27 nM). It also binds fibrinogen (Kd, 244±15 nM), fibrinogen fragment D (Kd, 132±30 nM), plasma fibronectin (Kd, 359±68 nM), and murine laminin (Kd, 410±81 nM). The binding to human skin elastin by both recombinant OmpL37 and live Leptospira interrogans is specifically enhanced by rabbit antiserum for OmpL37, suggesting the involvement of OmpL37 in leptospiral binding to elastin and also the possibility that host-generated antibodies may promote rather than inhibit the adherence of leptospires to elastin-rich tissues. Further, we demonstrate that OmpL37 is recognized by acute and convalescent leptospirosis patient sera and also by Leptospira-infected hamster sera. Finally, OmpL37 protein is detected in pathogenic Leptospira serovars and not in saprophytic Leptospira. Thus, OmpL37 is a novel elastin-binding protein of pathogenic Leptospira that may be promoting attachment of Leptospira to host tissues. PMID:20844573
Grune Loffler, Sylvia; Rago, Virginia; Martínez, Mara; Uhart, Marcela; Florin-Christensen, Monica; Romero, Graciela; Brihuega, Bibiana
Leptospirosis is the most widespread zoonotic disease in the world. It is caused by pathogenic spirochetes of the genus Leptospira spp. and is maintained in nature through chronic renal infection of carrier animals. Rodents and other small mammals are the main reservoirs. Information on leptospirosis in marine mammals is scarce; however, cases of leptospirosis have been documented in pinniped populations from the Pacific coast of North America from southern California to British Columbia. We report the isolation of a Leptospira spp. strain, here named Manara, from a kidney sample obtained from a Southern Right Whale (Eubalaena australis) calf, which stranded dead in Playa Manara, Península Valdés, Argentina. This strain showed motility and morphology typical of the genus Leptospira spp. under dark-field microscopy; and grew in Ellinghausen-McCullough-Johnson-Harris (EMJH) medium and Fletcher medium after 90 days of incubation at 28°C. Considering the source of this bacterium, we tested its ability to grow in Fletcher medium diluted with seawater at different percentages (1%, 3%, 5%, 7% and 10% v/v). Bacterial growth was detected 48 h after inoculation of Fletcher medium supplemented with 5% sea water, demonstrating the halophilic nature of the strain Manara. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences placed this novel strain within the radiation of the pathogenic species of the genus Leptospira spp., with sequence similarities within the range 97-100%, and closely related to L. interrogans. Two different PCR protocols targeting genus-specific pathogenic genes (G1-G2, B64I-B64II and LigB) gave positive results, which indicates that the strain Manara is likely pathogenic. Further studies are needed to confirm this possibility as well as determine its serogroup. These results could modify our understanding of the epidemiology of this zoonosis. Until now, the resistance and ability to grow in seawater for long periods of time had been proven for the strain
Sanhueza, J M; Heuer, C; West, D
The profitability of beef breeding farms in New Zealand depends principally on optimal reproductive performance. The aim of this study was to estimate the impact of four major pathogens, bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV), Neospora caninum (N. caninum), Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo (Hardjo), and Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona (Pomona), on rates of fetal loss in commercial beef breeding herds. Farms reporting fetal loss were recruited, and a blood sample from aborting cows (cases) was collected. Controls were normally calving cows from the same farm. At least four controls were selected from each farm contributing cases. Samples were tested using ELISA for detection of antibodies against BVDV and N. caninum, and microscopic agglutination test (MAT) for detection of antibody against Hardjo and Pomona. A selection of titer cut-offs was conducted to evaluate the relationship between fetal loss and seropositivity to each pathogen using conditional logistic regression. The cut-off titer with the strongest association with fetal loss was included in the multivariate model. A significant increased risk of fetal loss was found for animals seropositive to N. caninum (odds ratio (OR)=3.36; 95% confidence interval (95% CI)=1.27-8.89), Hardjo (OR=1.84; 95% CI=1.01-3.33), and Pomona in non-vaccinated cows (OR=14.91, 95% CI=1.73-128.84) at the ELISA titer ≥ 30, and MAT titers of ≥ 1:384 and ≥ 1:768 for a positive sample, respectively. A marginally non-significant increased risk of fetal loss was found for animals exposed to BVDV (OR=2.01; 95% CI=0.99-4.11) at the ELISA titer of ≤ 1. Vaccination did not affect ORs for Hardjo or BVDV and no herd vaccinated against N. caninum. Approximately 14.0% of all fetal loss in the beef breeding cattle population in New Zealand may be attributable to BVDV (3.5%), N. caninum (3.0%), Hardjo (4.7%), and Pomona (3.6%).
Dunbar, M.R.; Velarde, R.; Gregg, M.A.; Bray, M.
During 1996 and 1997, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service conducted a study to determine the cause(s) of population decline and low survival of pronghorn antelope (Antilocapra americana) fawns on Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge (HMNAR) located in southeastern Oregon (USA). As part of that study, blood, fecal, and tissue samples from 104 neonatal fawns, 40 adult does, and nine adult male pronghorns were collected to conduct a health evaluation of the population. Physiological parameters related to nutrition and/or disease were studied. No abnormalities were found in the complete blood cell counts of adults (n = 40) or fawns (n = 44 to 67). Serum total protein and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) levels were lower compared to other pronghorn populations. Does had mean BUN values significantly lower (P < 0.001) in December 1996 than March 1997. Serum copper (Cu) levels in does (range 0.39 to 0.74 ppm) were considered marginal when compared to domestic animals and other wild ungulates. Fawns had low (0.28 ppm) Cu levels at birth and reached the does' marginal values in about 3 days Whole blood, serum and liver selenium (Se) levels were considered marginal to low in most segments of the pronghorn population. However, serum levels of vitamin E (range 1.98 to 3.27 ??g/ml), as determined from the does captured in March, were apparently sufficient to offset any signs of Se deficiency. No clinical signs of Cu or Se deficiency were observed. Fifty-five of 87 dead fawns were necropsied. Trauma, due to predation by coyotes (Canis latrans), accounted for 62% of the mortality during mid-May to mid-July of each year. Other causes included predation by golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos) (4%), dystocia (2%), septicemic pasteurellosis (4%), starvation (5%), and unknown (23%). Adult females were tested for serum neutralizing antibodies to Brucella spp. (n = 20, negative), Leptospira interrogans (n = 20, negative), bluetongue virus (n = 20, 35% positive), epizootic hemorrhagic disease
Wilson-Welder, Jennifer H.; Frank, Ami T.; Hornsby, Richard L.; Olsen, Steven C.; Alt, David P.
Cattle are the reservoir hosts of Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjo, and can also be reservoir hosts of other Leptospira species such as L. kirschneri, and Leptospira interrogans. As a reservoir host, cattle shed Leptospira, infecting other animals, including humans. Previous studies with human and murine neutrophils have shown activation of neutrophil extracellular trap or NET formation, and upregulation of inflammatory mediators by neutrophils in the presence of Leptospira. Humans, companion animals and most widely studied models of Leptospirosis are of acute infection, hallmarked by systemic inflammatory response, neutrophilia, and septicemia. In contrast, cattle exhibit chronic infection with few outward clinical signs aside from reproductive failure. Taking into consideration that there is host species variation in innate immunity, especially in pathogen recognition and response, the interaction of bovine peripheral blood polymorphonuclear cells (PMNs) and several Leptospira strains was evaluated. Studies including bovine-adapted strains, human pathogen strains, a saprophyte and inactivated organisms. Incubation of PMNs with Leptospira did induce slight activation of neutrophil NETs, greater than unstimulated cells but less than the quantity from E. coli P4 stimulated PMNs. Very low but significant from non-stimulated, levels of reactive oxygen peroxides were produced in the presence of all Leptospira strains and E. coli P4. Similarly, significant levels of reactive nitrogen intermediaries (NO2) was produced from PMNs when incubated with the Leptospira strains and greater quantities in the presence of E. coli P4. PMNs incubated with Leptospira induced RNA transcripts of IL-1β, MIP-1α, and TNF-α, with greater amounts induced by live organisms when compared to heat-inactivated leptospires. Transcript for inflammatory cytokine IL-8 was also induced, at similar levels regardless of Leptospira strain or viability. However, incubation of Leptospira strains
Fang, F; Collins-Emerson, J M; Cullum, A; Heuer, C; Wilson, P R; Benschop, J
A cross-sectional study was carried out on sheep and cattle slaughtered at a New Zealand abattoir from September to November 2010 to investigate the supplier-specific shedding rate, renal carriage rate and seroprevalence of leptospires. In the 2008/2009 season, this abattoir experienced three human leptospirosis cases from 20 staff, of which two were hospitalized. Urine, kidney and blood samples were collected from carcasses of 399 sheep (six suppliers, 17 slaughter lines) and 146 cattle (three suppliers, 22 slaughter lines). The urine and kidney samples were tested by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR), while serum samples (from coagulated blood samples) were tested by microscopic agglutination test (MAT). In total, 27% (73/274; 95% CI: 18-37) of urine samples tested positive by qPCR. Species-specific shedding rates (prevalence of positive urine qPCR) were 31% (95% CI: 17-48) for sheep and 21% (95% CI: 14-30) for cattle. For 545 kidney samples tested, 145 were qPCR positive (27%; 95% CI: 17-39). The average prevalence of kidney qPCR positivity was 29% (95% CI: 17-45) for sheep and 21% (95% CI: 15-28) for cattle. Three hundred and thirty of 542 sampled sheep and cattle had antibodies against Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar Hardjobovis (Hardjobovis) and/or Leptospira interrogans serovar Pomona (Pomona), based on reciprocal MAT titre ≥1 : 48 (overall seroprevalence of 61%; 95% CI: 48-73). Seroprevalence was 57% (95% CI: 40-72) for sheep and 73% (95% CI: 59-83) for cattle. Among the seropositive animals, 41% (70/170; 95% CI: 30-54) were shedding (tested positive by urine qPCR) and 42% (137/330; 95% CI: 30-54) had renal carriage (tested positive by kidney qPCR). Some risk management options for abattoirs or farms to prevent human leptospirosis infections include vaccination of maintenance hosts, the use of personal protective equipment, and the application of urine qPCR to detect shedding status of stock as surveillance and as an alert.
Tubiana, Sarah; Mikulski, Marc; Becam, Jérôme; Lacassin, Flore; Lefèvre, Patrick; Gourinat, Ann-Claire; Goarant, Cyrille; D'Ortenzio, Eric
Background Leptospirosis is a major public health concern in New Caledonia (NC) and in other tropical countries. Severe manifestations of the disease are estimated to occur in 5–15% of all human infections worldwide and factors associated with these forms are poorly understood. Our objectives were to identify risk factors and predictors of severe forms of leptospirosis in adults. Methods and Findings We conducted a retrospective case-control study of inpatients with laboratory-confirmed leptospirosis who were admitted to two public hospitals in NC in 2008–2011. Cases were patients with fatal or severe leptospirosis, as determined by clinical criteria. This approach was meant to be pragmatic and to reflect the routine medical management of patients. Controls were defined as patients hospitalized for milder leptospirosis. Risk and prognostic factors were identified by multivariate logistic regression. Among the 176 patients enrolled in the study, 71 had criteria of severity including 10 deaths (Case Fatality Rate = 14.1%). Three risk factors were independently associated with severe leptospirosis: current cigarette smoking (OR = 2.94 [CI 1.45–5.96]); delays >2 days between the onset of symptoms and the initiation of antibiotherapy (OR = 2.78 [CI 1.31–5.91]); and Leptospira interrogans serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae as the infecting strain (OR = 2.79 [CI 1.26–6.18]). The following post-admission laboratory results correlated with poor prognoses: platelet count ≤50,000/µL (OR = 6.36 [CI 1.79–22.62]), serum creatinine >200 mM (OR = 5.86 [CI 1.61–21.27]), serum lactate >2.5 mM (OR = 5.14 [CI 1.57–16.87]), serum amylase >250 UI/L (OR = 4.66 [CI 1.39–15.69]) and leptospiremia >1000 leptospires/mL (OR = 4.31 [CI 1.17–15.92]). Conclusions To assess the risk of developing severe leptospirosis, our study illustrates the benefit for clinicians to have: i) the identification of the infective strain, ii) a critical
Rahelinirina, Soanandrasana; Léon, Albertine; Harstskeerl, Rudy A.; Sertour, Natacha; Ahmed, Ahmed; Raharimanana, Claudine; Ferquel, Elisabeth; Garnier, Martine; Chartier, Loïc; Duplantier, Jean-Marc; Rahalison, Lila; Cornet, Muriel
Background Leptospirosis has long been a major public health concern in the southwestern Indian Ocean. However, in Madagascar, only a few, old studies have provided indirect serological evidence of the disease in humans or animals. Methodology/Principal Findings We conducted a large animal study focusing on small-mammal populations. Five field trapping surveys were carried out at five sites, from April 2008 to August 2009. Captures consisted of Rattus norvegicus (35.8%), R. rattus (35.1%), Mus musculus (20.5%) and Suncus murinus (8.6%). We used microbiological culture, serodiagnosis tests (MAT) and real-time PCR to assess Leptospira infection. Leptospira carriage was detected by PCR in 91 (33.9%) of the 268 small mammals, by MAT in 17 of the 151 (11.3%) animals for which serum samples were available and by culture in 9 of the 268 animals (3.3%). Rates of infection based on positive PCR results were significantly higher in Moramanga (54%), Toliara (48%) and Mahajanga (47.4%) than in Antsiranana (8.5%) and Toamasina (14%) (p = 0.001). The prevalence of Leptospira carriage was significantly higher in R. norvegicus (48.9%), S. murinus (43.5%) and R. rattus (30.8%) than in M. musculus (9.1%) (p<0.001). The MAT detected antibodies against the serogroups Canicola and Icterohaemorrhagiae. Isolates were characterized by serology, secY sequence-based phylogeny, partial sequencing of rrs, multi-locus VNTR analysis and pulsed field gel electrophoresis. The 10 isolates obtained from nine rats were all identified as species L. interrogans serogroup Canicola serovar Kuwait and all had identical partial rrs and secY sequences. Conclusions/Significance We present here the first direct evidence of widespread leptospiral carriage in small mammals in Madagascar. Our results strongly suggest a high level of environmental contamination, consistent with probable transmission of the infection to humans. This first isolation of pathogenic Leptospira strains in this country may
êcher le portage pharyngé devrait être déterminé. Pour résoudre ce problème, le consortium MenAfriCar (Consortium Africain du Portage Méningococcique) a été établi en 2009 pour étudier le mode de portage du méningocoque dans les pays de la ceinture africaine de la méningite avant et après l’ introduction de PsA-TT. Cet article décrit comment le consortium a été établi, ses objectifs et les méthodes de laboratoire et de terrain standardisées qui ont été utilisées pour atteindre ces objectifs. L’ expérience du consortium MenAfriCar aidera à planifier les futures études sur l’ épidémiologie du portage du méningocoque dans les pays de la ceinture africaine de la méningite et d’ ailleurs. Se está utilizando una vacuna meningocócica conjugada (MenAfriVac™) de polisacárido del serogrupo A / tétano toxoide (PsA-TT) en países del cinturón Africano de meningitis. Las experiencias obtenidas con otras vacunas conjugadas polisacárido/proteína han demostrado que una parte importante de su éxito se debe a su habilidad para prevenir la colonización faríngea de los portadores, acabando por lo tanto con la transmisión, y a la de inducir la protección de rebaño. Si PsA-TT ha de cumplir el objetivo de prevenir epidemias, debe ser capaz de prevenir el estado de portador faríngeo, al igual que la enfermedad invasiva por meningococo, y para ello es necesario determinar si la PsA-TT puede prevenir la colonización faríngea. Con el fin de abordar esta cuestión se estableció un consorcio africano en el 2009 - el MenAfriCar (African Meningococcal Carriage Consortium) – para investigar los patrones del estado de portador de meningococo en países del cinturón Africano de la meningitis, antes y después de la introducción de PsA-TT. Este artículo describe como se estableció el consorcio, sus objetivos y los métodos estandarizados de campo y de laboratorio que se utilizaron para alcanzarlos. La experiencia del consorcio MenAfriCar ayudar
McKinnie, Shaun M K; Rodriguez-Lopez, Eva M; Vederas, John C; Crowther, Jennifer M; Suzuki, Hironori; Dobson, Renwick C J; Leustek, Thomas; Triassi, Alexander J; Wheatley, Matthew S; Hudson, André O
L,L-Diaminopimelate aminotransferase (DapL) is an enzyme required for the biosynthesis of meso-diaminopimelate (m-DAP) and L-lysine (Lys) in some bacteria and photosynthetic organisms. m-DAP and Lys are both involved in the synthesis of peptidoglycan (PG) and protein synthesis. DapL is found in specific eubacterial and archaeal lineages, in particular in several groups of pathogenic bacteria such as Leptospira interrogans (LiDapL), the soil/water bacterium Verrucomicrobium spinosum (VsDapL) and the alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii (CrDapL). Here we present the first comprehensive inhibition study comparing the kinetic activity of DapL orthologs using previously active small molecule inhibitors formerly identified in a screen with the DapL of Arabidopsis thaliana (AtDapL), a flowering plant. Each inhibitor is derived from one of four classes with different central structural moieties: a hydrazide, a rhodanine, a barbiturate, or a thiobarbituate functionality. The results show that all five compounds tested were effective at inhibiting the DapL orthologs. LiDapL and AtDapL showed similar patterns of inhibition across the inhibitor series, whereas the VsDapL and CrDapL inhibition patterns were different from that of LiDapL and AtDapL. CrDapL was found to be insensitive to the hydrazide (IC₅₀ >200 μM). VsDapL was found to be the most sensitive to the barbiturate and thiobarbiturate containing inhibitors (IC₅₀ ∼5 μM). Taken together, the data shows that the homologs have differing sensitivities to the inhibitors with IC₅₀ values ranging from 4.7 to 250 μM. In an attempt to understand the basis for these differences the four enzymes were modeled based on the known structure of AtDapL. Overall, it was found that the enzyme active sites were conserved, although the second shell of residues close to the active site were not. We conclude from this that the altered binding patterns seen in the inhibition studies may be a consequence of the inhibitors forming