Identification of Bartonella henselae In Vivo Induced Antigens for Development of a Reliable Serodiagnostic Assay for Canine Bartonelloses

Bartonella, a genus of gram-negative bacteria, are associated with a wide spectrum of life- threatening diseases in animals and humans. More than 40 Bartonella species have been reported to infect mammalian reservoir hosts, and infection often leads to chronic bacteremia. At least ten Bartonella species have been implicated in association with serious diseases in dogs, including endocarditis, hemangiosarcoma, myocarditis, peliosis hepatis, polyarthritis and vasculitis. Despite biomedical advances and ongoing research in the field of canine bartonelloses, currently available PCR, culture, and serological based assays lack sensitivity for diagnosis of bartonelloses. Dogs throughout the United States and much of the world are exposed to Bartonella species.

From a public health perspective there is an increased risk of direct and vector-borne transmission of Bartonella species from animals to humans. These factors justify the need for the ongoing development of a reliable serodiagnostic modality and ultimately an effective vaccine for prevention of bartonelloses in dogs.

We will employ In-Vivo Induced Antigen Technology (IVIAT) to identify Bartonella in-vivo induced antigens, which will allow us to evaluate their potential as diagnostic markers for canine bartonelloses. This proposed study will result in development of a novel and sensitive ELISA assay for diagnosing Bartonella infection in dogs and will provide insights into the development of effective vaccine candidates for preventing Bartonella infection.

Co-sponsored with the AKC Canine Health Foundation, Grant Number: 2819


Edward Breitschwerdt, DVM ; North Carolina State University
Amount: $10,000