Fecal PCR test for Campylobacter spp.
The PCR will amplify DNA that is directly extracted from fecal
For this test we will require up to 1 gram of fresh feces. The
sample should be taken from the abnormal loose stool and must be
free of cat litter.
For storage and shipping, please collect the sample and store in
the refrigerator for up to one week before shipping. Fresh samples
are ideal. Please ship samples cooled overnight with a gel ice
Turnaround: 1-2 business days after receipt of
General information about Campylobacter spp.
Campylobacter-associated enteritis is the most
common cause of bacterial diarrhea in humans. While there are many
different Campylobacter spp. that have been identified
in the intestinal tract of dogs and cats, only a limited number of
Campylobacter spp. have been associated with
intestinal disease in companion animals: C. jejuni, C.
coli. Our PCR protocol exclusively targets these
Campylobacter species and, in positive cases, we will
report the species identification of the organism present in the
Who should be tested?
Although Campylobacter spp. can be isolated from
feces of healthy animals, they can also induce gastrointestinal
disease under certain conditions. Risk factors for
Campylobacter-associated diarrhea include young
animals (especially those less than 6 months of age are at higher
risk), concurrent GI infections (e.g., Parvovirus,
Giardia spp.), immunosuppression, poor hygienic
conditions, and antibiotic therapy.
Humans are highly susceptible to Campylobacter spp.
infection and dogs and cats with diarrhea are a possible source of
infection for humans, especially infants and children. Therefore,
the diagnosis and treatment of
Campylobacter-associated diarrhea in dogs and cats is
of great zoonotic importance.
Clinical picture, diagnosis, and treatment of Campylobacter
spp. infections in the dog and cat
Clinical signs of Campylobacter infection include
watery diarrhea, in some cases containing mucus and/or blood,
tenesmus, anorexia, fever, and/or vomiting. Diarrhea is usually
acute, but might be chronic or recurrent in some cases.
Diagnosis of Campylobacter-associated diarrhea can
be made by fecal culture or molecular techniques. Some authors have
reported on the microscopic identification of
Campylobacter spp. but microscopic examination is
associated with a low specificity as it is not possible to
differentiate Campylobacter spp. from enteric
Helicobacter or Spirillum organisms, thus
potentially leading to a false positive diagnosis. Fecal culture
allows for identification of the various Campylobacter
spp., but depending on the phenotypic and biochemical tests used,
results can often be unreliable. In contrast, PCR-based methods
allow identification and accurate differentiation of
Campylobacter spp. that can be especially useful for
those species, which are difficult to cultivate.
Erythromycin (10-20 mg/kg q 8 h PO for 5 days) has been reported
to be the treatment of choice, but tylosin (25 mg/kg q 12 h PO for
7 days) is a good alternative for treatment of Campylobacter spp.
infections. It should be noted that some antibiotics (e.g.,
enrofloxacin and metronidazole) can induce drug resistance.
"This service is performed pursuant to an agreement with
Roche Molecular Systems, Inc."
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