Isolation of Helicobacter canis from a Colony of Bengal cats with endemic diarrhea

Janet E Foley, Stanley L Marks, Linda Munson, Ann Melli, Floyd E. Dewhirst, Shilu Yu, Zeli Shen, James G. Fox

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


On the basis of biochemical, phenotypic, and 16S rRNA analyses, Helicobacter canis was isolated from Bengal cats with and without chronic diarrhea. Because the cats were coinfected with other potential pathogens, including Campylobacter helveticus, and because H. canis was isolated from nondiarrheic cats, the causal role of H. canis in producing the diarrhea could not be proven. Histologically, the colons of the four affected cats were characterized by mild to moderate neutrophilic, plasmacytic, and histocytic infiltrates in the lamina propria. Rare crypt abscesses were also noted for three cats but were a more prominent feature of the colonic lesions noted for the fourth cat. This is the first observation of H. canis in cats and raises the possibility that H. canis, like H. hepaticus and H. bills in mice, can cause inflammation of the colon, particularly in hosts with immune dysregulation. Further studies are needed to determine the importance of H. canis as a primary enteric pathogen in cats and the role of cats in the possible zoonotic spread of H. canis to humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3271-3275
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Microbiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Microbiology


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