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Recent advances in canine leptospirosis: focus on vaccine development

Authors Klaasen HE, Adler B

Received 16 February 2015

Accepted for publication 2 April 2015

Published 19 June 2015 Volume 2015:6 Pages 245—260


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 5

Editor who approved publication: Professor Takashi Agui

Henricus LBM (Eric) Klaasen,1 Ben Adler2

1Global Companion Animals Research and Development, Merck Sharp and Dohme Animal Health, Boxmeer, the Netherlands; 2Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Clayton, VIC, Australia

Abstract: Leptospirosis is a global infection of humans and animals caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp. Leptospirosis is a major zoonosis, with infection acquired from wild and domestic animals. It is also a significant cause of morbidity, mortality, and economic loss in production and companion animals. Leptospirosis in dogs is prevalent worldwide and as well as a cause of canine disease, it presents a zoonotic risk to human contacts. Canine leptospirosis does not differ greatly from the syndromes seen in other animal species, with hepatic, renal, and pulmonary involvement being the main manifestations. While the pathogenesis of disease is well documented at the whole animal level, the cellular and molecular basis remains obscure. Killed, whole-cell bacterin vaccines are licensed worldwide and have not changed greatly over the past several decades. Vaccine-induced immunity is restricted to serologically related serovars and is generally short-lived, necessitating annual revaccination. The appearance of new serovars as causes of canine leptospirosis requires constant epidemiological surveillance and tailoring of vaccines to cover emerging serovars. At the present time, there is no realistic prospect of alternative, non-bacterin vaccines in the foreseeable future.

Keywords: canine leptospirosis, vaccines, diagnosis, epidemiology, pathogenesis

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