Cancer Attributable to Infection?


Dr. Edward B. Breitschwerdt,

Bartonella spp. are stealth bacterial pathogens. A One Health approach to this emerging infection is defining disease manifestations, establishing the comparative disease pathogenesis for these bacterial pathogens, providing insights into effective treatment regimens, and elucidating strategies to prevent zoonotic disease transmission from animals to humans. 

Dogs and humans develop nearly identical types of pathology when infected with a Bartonella spp. As such, defining the role of these bacteria in dogs with hemangiosarcoma may provide important comparative oncology lessons for veterinary and human medicine. In this presentation Dr. Breitschwerdt will discuss Bartonella spp. and what we know about the relationship between infection with this bacteria and hemangiosarcoma in dogs. Discussion will include:

  • Bartonella lesions that occur in dogs and humans

  • The mechanisms by which bacteria might cause cancer

  • The potential sources of Bartonella spp. exposures and modes of organism transmission to dogs

  • The mechanisms by which Bartonella spp. may contribute to the development of hemangiosarcoma

  • The benefits and limitations of serological, molecular and enrichment culture tests for the diagnosis of bartonellosis in dogs with hemangiosarcoma

Original publication date June 8, 2022
Presented by Edward B. Breitschwerdt, DVM, DACVIM

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