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Open Access Evaluation of Sensitivity and Specificity of a Mycoplasma haemomuris-Specific Polymerase Chain Reaction Test

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Background and Purpose: Mycoplasma haemomuris, a small pleomorphic bacterium parasitic of red blood cells, often causes chronic and subclinical infection of rodents. Mycoplasma haemomuris is uncultivable, and a serologic testing method is not readily available. The purpose of the study reported here was to develop a sensitive and specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for detection of M. haemomuris in blood samples.

Methods: On the basis of the regions of the M. haemomuris 16S rRNA gene most divergent from corresponding regions of related bacteria, M. haemomuris-specific primers were designed so that these primers could selectively amplify M. haemomuris DNA. A PCR test was performed, using blood samples from BALB/c mice infected with M. haemomuris strains TR 8564, TR 8563, and TR 8556.

Results: Use of the PCR test enabled detection of M. haemomuris DNA in a minimum of 0.0001 l of infected mouse blood. The test also was specific for M. haemomuris and did not amplify closely related species, such as M. haemofelis, M. haemosuis, M. orale, or Anaplasma marginale.

Conclusion: This method is sensitive and specific for detection of M. haemomuris.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Veterinary Biosciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, The Ohio State University, 1925 Coffey Road, Columbus, Ohio 43210

Publication date: August 1, 2002

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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