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Characterization of pathogenic leptospires isolated from dogs with acute leptospirosis treated at the veterinary outpatient service of Universidade Santo Amaro, São Paulo

Grant number: 23/15879-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2024
Effective date (End): December 31, 2024
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Veterinary Medicine - Preventive Veterinary Medicine
Principal Investigator:Bruno Alonso Miotto
Grantee:Gabriele Yumi Ramalho
Host Institution: Universidade de Santo Amaro (UNISA). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Leptospirosis is a bacterial zoonosis with worldwide distribution, potentially lethal and capable of causing epidemic outbreaks in human and domestic animal populations. Infected dogs can act as an important source of infection for human populations, as they are capable of eliminating the pathogen in the environment via urine and body fluids. Therefore, the identification of infected animals, which is made possible mainly by the association of multiple diagnostic techniques, is essential to assist in the implementation of preventive measures with a strong impact on Public Health. Even when the diagnosis is confirmed, only the isolation of the agent allows the identification of circulating strains, thus enabling the commercialization of vaccines that contain serovars that guarantee the effective immunization of susceptible populations. The objective of this study is to use a multiple approach for the definitive diagnosis of canine leptospirosis, with the main objective being the isolation of the pathogen and characterization of the infecting strain. Urine and blood samples will be collected from dogs with clinical suspicion of leptospirosis treated at the Veterinary Hospital of the University of Santo Amaro and intended for the cultivation of leptospires and molecular detection of the pathogen through PCR. Serum samples will be used to investigate anti-leptospira antibodies using the microscopic seroagglutination technique. If it is possible to isolate the agent, the isolates will be characterized using the serogrouping technique with polyclonal antibodies.

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