Co-infection with Capillaria hepatica and Bartonella elizabethae in a brown rat (Rattus norvegicus) from Nigeria

Joshua Kamani*, B. O. Akanbi, G. Baneth, D. Morrick, S. Harrus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


During a survey for Bartonella species in rodents in Vom, Plateau State, Nigeria, a brown rat (Rattus norvegicus) with multiple subcutaneous nodules was captured. Gross pathology examination revealed multifocal pale areas in the spleen and liver. Histopathologic examination of the liver revealed numerous multifocal well demarcated and walled-of granulomas compressing and destroying the hepatic cord and parenchyma. Granulomas contained Capillaria hepatica nematodes in different developmental stages with numerous typical ova. Tere was degeneration and necrosis of hepatocytes, bridging fibrosis and biliary hyperplasia and reduplication, surrounded by inflammatory foci composed of lymphocytes, plasma cells and macrophages. Tiny smooth bacterial colonies with metallic sheen were isolated from blood of the rat cultured on blood chocolate agar. DNA extracted from the blood and spleen of the rat was found positive for Bartonella spp. citrate synthase gene (gltA) by PCR. Sequence analysis shows 99% similarity to B. elizabethae. Te identification of two zoonotic agents in a rat highlights the importance of rats in the transmission cycle of zoonotic diseases in Nigeria.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)230-233
Number of pages4
JournalIsrael Journal of Veterinary Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2013


  • Bartonella elizabethae
  • Capillaria hepatica
  • Nigeria
  • Rattus norvegicus


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