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1 December 2014 SURVEY OF MYCOBACTERIUM AVIUM SUBSPECIES PARATUBERCULOSIS IN ROAD-KILLED WILD CARNIVORES IN PORTUGAL
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Abstract

A survey to determine the occurrence of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP) in wild carnivores in Portugal was conducted by testing samples from road-killed animals between 2009 and 2012. Postmortem examinations were performed and tissues were collected from wild carnivores representing four families and six different species, with a total of 74 animals analyzed. Cultures were performed by using Löwenstein-Jensen and Middlebrook 7H11 solid media and acid-fast isolates were identified by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and mycobactin dependency characteristics. Tissues were also screened for MAP by directly extracting DNA and testing for the MAP-specific sequences. The occurrence of infected animals (an animal had at least one tissue that was positive for culture or direct PCR) was 27.0% (n = 20). MAP was isolated from culture of 25 tissue samples (3.8%) and was detected by direct PCR in 40 (6.0%) samples. Infection was recorded in 5/6 studied species: 7/49 (14.3%) red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), 3/3 (100%) beech martens (Martes foina), 2/4 (50.0%) Eurasian otters (Lutra lutra), 7/15 (46.7%) Egyptian mongooses (Herpestes ichneumon), and 1/1 (100%) European badger (Meles meles). These species represent three different taxonomic families: Canidae (14.3% were positive), Mustelidae (75.0% were positive), and Herpestidae (46.7% were positive). The results of this study confirm the presence of MAP infection in wild carnivores in Portugal.

Copyright 2014 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Ana Cristina Matos, Luis Figueira, Maria Helena Martins, Filipa Loureiro, Maria Lurdes Pinto, Manuela Matos, and Ana Cláudia Coelho "SURVEY OF MYCOBACTERIUM AVIUM SUBSPECIES PARATUBERCULOSIS IN ROAD-KILLED WILD CARNIVORES IN PORTUGAL," Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 45(4), 775-781, (1 December 2014). https://doi.org/10.1638/2014-0010.1
Received: 20 January 2014; Published: 1 December 2014
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