High diversity of hemotropic mycoplasmas in Iberian wild carnivores

Javier Millán, Roser Velarde, Verónica Delicado, Nieves Negre, Alexis Ribas, Álvaro Oleaga, Luis Llaneza, Fernando Esperón

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch

9 Citations (Scopus)


© 2018 Elsevier Ltd Two-hundred and thirty-one wild carnivores belonging to 10 species of in Spain were analyzed for the presence of DNA of hemotropic mycoplasmas (hemoplasmas) by means of a universal real-time PCR targeting a 16S rRNA gene fragment. Positive reactions were found for wolf (Canis lupus: 6/37), fox (Vulpes vulpes: 1/41), Eurasian badger (Meles meles: 49/85), pine marten (Martes martes: 11/23), stone marten (Martes foina: 6/9), least weasel (Mustela nivalis: 4/4), European wildcat (Felis s. silvestris: 1/2) and common genet (Genetta genetta: 7/27). Sixty-four readable sequences were obtained, resulting in 14 nucleotide sequence types (ntST). The highest diversity was detected in badger (6 ntST) and pine marten (5 ntST). The sequencing of a fragment of the RNase P gene showed that all positive reactions in wolves corresponded to Mycoplasma haemocanis. Three ntST showed an identity between 98–100% with Candidatus M. haemominutum, C. M. turicensis and C. M. haematoparvum, respectively. Four ntST were closely related to C. M. haemomeles and/or diverse genotypes reported from raccoons (Procyon lotor) in the USA. One ntST from a badger showed only 88% similarity to the closest published sequence and was phylogenetically unrelated to any other hemoplasma sequence reported. Three ntST were 99–100% similar to two different sequences reported in Spanish bats. This study confirms the widespread nature and the high genetic diversity of hemoplasma infection in carnivores. Wild carnivores might be natural hosts of some hemoplasmas infecting dogs and cats.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-16
JournalComparative Immunology, Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018


  • Carnivora
  • Haemobartonella
  • Mycoplasma
  • Reservoir
  • Shared diseases


Dive into the research topics of 'High diversity of hemotropic mycoplasmas in Iberian wild carnivores'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this