New perspectives about Hemotrophic mycoplasma (formerly, Haemobartonella and Eperythrozoon species) infections in dogs and cats

      Hemotrophic mycoplasmas (Haemobartonella and Eperythrozoon species) are pleomorphic bacteria that parasitize red blood cells in a wide range of vertebrate animals. The bacteria may be rod, spherical, or ring shaped and are found either singularly or in chains across the cell's surface [
      • Moulder J.W.
      • Order I.
      Rickettsiales.
      ]. In the United States, Flint and Moss [
      • Flint J.C.
      • Moss L.D.
      Infectious anemia in cats.
      ] first described this parasite on red blood cells of anemic cats in 1953, dubbing the disease feline infectious anemia. They suggested that the organism be named Haemobartonella felis, although a similar parasite in South Africa was previously referred to as Eperythrozoon felis [
      • Clark R.
      Eperythrozoon felis (sp. Nov) in a cat.
      ]. Benjamin and Lumb [
      • Benjamin M.M.
      • Lumb W.V.
      Haemobartonella canis infection in a dog.
      ] described a comparable disease in a splenectomized dog and were successful in transmitting the disease to other splenectomized dogs. However, sporadic cases of hemobartonellosis in dogs were recognized in the United States as early as 1935 [
      • Benjamin M.M.
      • Lumb W.V.
      Haemobartonella canis infection in a dog.
      ].
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