Bartonella henselae

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Bartonella henselae
Blood culture negative endocarditis.jpg
Scientific classification
B. henselae
Binomial name
Bartonella henselae
(Regnery et al. 1992)

Bartonella henselae, formerly Rochalimæa, is a proteobacterium that is the causative agent of cat-scratch disease [1] (bartonellosis).

Proteobacteria phylum of Gram-negative bacteria

Proteobacteria is a major phylum of gram-negative bacteria. They include a wide variety of pathogens, such as Escherichia, Salmonella, Vibrio, Helicobacter, Yersinia, Legionellales and many other notable genera. Others are free-living (non-parasitic) and include many of the bacteria responsible for nitrogen fixation.

Cat-scratch disease Human disease

Cat-scratch disease (CSD) is an infectious disease that results from a scratch or bite of a cat. Symptoms typically include a non-painful bump or blister at the site of injury and painful and swollen lymph nodes. People may feel tired, have a headache, or a fever. Symptoms typically begin within 3-14 days following infection.

Bartonellosis is an infectious disease produced by bacteria of the genus Bartonella. Bartonella species cause diseases such as Carrión´s disease, trench fever, cat-scratch disease, bacillary angiomatosis, peliosis hepatis, chronic bacteremia, endocarditis, chronic lymphadenopathy, and neurological disorders.


B. henselae is a member of the genus Bartonella , one of the most common types of bacteria in the world. It infects the host cell by sticking to it using trimeric autotransporter adhesins.

<i>Bartonella</i> genus of bacteria

Bartonella is a genus of Gram-negative bacteria. It is the only genus in the family Bartonellaceae. Facultative intracellular parasites, Bartonella species can infect healthy people, but are considered especially important as opportunistic pathogens. Bartonella species are transmitted by vectors such as ticks, fleas, sand flies, and mosquitoes. At least eight Bartonella species or subspecies are known to infect humans.

Trimeric autotransporter adhesin

In molecular biology, trimeric autotransporter adhesins (TAAs), are proteins found on the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria. Bacteria use TAAs in order to infect their host cells via a process called cell adhesion. TAAs also go by another name, oligomeric coiled-coil adhesins, which is shortened to OCAs. In essence, they are virulence factors, factors that make the bacteria harmful and infective to the host organism.


B. henselae is a Gram-negative rod. [2] It can be cultured in a lysis-centrifugation blood culture. [3] The presence of bacteria can be detected by Warthin-Starry stain, or by a similar silver stain technique performed on infected tissue.

<i>Bacillus</i> genus of bacteria

Bacillus is a genus of Gram-positive, rod-shaped bacteria, a member of the phylum Firmicutes, with 266 named species. The term is also used to describe the shape (rod) of certain bacteria; and the plural Bacilli is the name of the class of bacteria to which this genus belongs. Bacillus species can be either obligate aerobes: oxygen dependent; or facultative anaerobes: having the ability to be anaerobic in the absence of oxygen. Cultured Bacillus species test positive for the enzyme catalase if oxygen has been used or is present.

The specific name henselae honors Diane Marie Hensel (b. 1953), a clinical microbiology technologist at University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, who collected numerous strains and samples of the infective agent during an outbreak in Oklahoma in 1985. [4]

Oklahoma State of the United States of America

Oklahoma is a state in the South Central region of the United States, bordered by Kansas on the north, Missouri on the northeast, Arkansas on the east, Texas on the south, New Mexico on the west, and Colorado on the northwest. It is the 20th-most extensive and the 28th-most populous of the fifty United States. The state's name is derived from the Choctaw words okla and humma, meaning "red people". It is also known informally by its nickname, "The Sooner State", in reference to the non-Native settlers who staked their claims on land before the official opening date of lands in the western Oklahoma Territory or before the Indian Appropriations Act of 1889, which dramatically increased European-American settlement in the eastern Indian Territory. Oklahoma Territory and Indian Territory were merged into the State of Oklahoma when it became the 46th state to enter the union on November 16, 1907. Its residents are known as Oklahomans, and its capital and largest city is Oklahoma City.

Case report

Between october 2015 and january 2017, a 14 years-old boy have developed symptoms of schizophrenia. After psychiatric hospitalization and antipsychotic treatment without any benefit, physicians have concluded that the boy suffers from an infection due to Bartonella henselae. Actually, the bacteria were transmitted to the boy after being scratched by his cat. After antimicrobial therapy, the mental-health of the boy has been completely recovered. [5]

Schizophrenia Mental disorder characterized by abnormal behavior and misinterpretation of reality

Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by abnormal behavior, strange speech, and a decreased ability to understand reality. Other symptoms include false beliefs, unclear or confused thinking, hearing voices that do not exist, reduced social engagement and emotional expression, and lack of motivation. People with schizophrenia often have additional mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, or substance-use disorders. Symptoms typically come on gradually, begin in young adulthood, and, in many cases, never resolve.

Related Research Articles

Zoonosis infectious disease that is transmitted between species (sometimes by a vector) from animals other than humans to humans or from humans to other animals

Zoonoses are infectious diseases that can be naturally transmitted between animals and humans.

Infection invasion of a host by disease-causing organisms

Infection is the invasion of an organism's body tissues by disease-causing agents, their multiplication, and the reaction of host tissues to the infectious agents and the toxins they produce. Infectious disease, also known as transmissible disease or communicable disease, is illness resulting from an infection.

<i>Chlamydia trachomatis</i> species of bacterium

Chlamydia trachomatis, commonly known as chlamydia, is a bacterium that can replicate only in human cells. It causes chlamydia, which can manifest in various ways, including: trachoma, lymphogranuloma venereum, nongonococcal urethritis, cervicitis, salpingitis, pelvic inflammatory disease. C. trachomatis is the most common infectious cause of blindness and the most common sexually transmitted bacterium.

Melioidosis Human disease

Melioidosis is an infectious disease caused by a Gram-negative bacterium, Burkholderia pseudomallei, found in soil and water. It is of public health importance in endemic areas, particularly in northeast Thailand, Vietnam, and northern Australia. It exists in acute and chronic forms. Signs and symptoms may include pain in chest, bones, or joints; cough; skin infections, lung nodules, and pneumonia.

Leptospirosis human disease

Leptospirosis is an infection caused by corkscrew-shaped bacteria called Leptospira. Signs and symptoms can range from none to mild such as headaches, muscle pains, and fevers to severe with bleeding from the lungs or meningitis. If the infection causes the person to turn yellow, have kidney failure and bleeding, it is then known as Weil's disease. If it also causes bleeding into the lungs then it is known as severe pulmonary hemorrhage syndrome.

Bacillary angiomatosis human disease

Bacillary angiomatosis (BA) is a form of angiomatosis associated with bacteria of the genus Bartonella.

Medical microbiology medical specialty

Medical microbiology , the large subset of microbiology that is applied to medicine, is a branch of medical science concerned with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases. In addition, this field of science studies various clinical applications of microbes for the improvement of health. There are four kinds of microorganisms that cause infectious disease: bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses, and one type of infectious protein called prion.

Bartonella rochalimae is a recently discovered strain of Gram-negative bacteria in the genus Bartonella, isolated by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), Massachusetts General Hospital, and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The bacterium is a close relative of Bartonella quintana, the microbe which caused trench fever in thousands of soldiers during World War I. Named after Brazilian scientist Henrique da Rocha Lima, B. rochalimae is also closely related to Bartonella henselae, a bacterium identified in the mid-1990s during the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco as the cause of cat scratch fever, which still infects more than 24,000 people in the United States each year.

Bartonella quintana, originally known as Rochalimaea quintana, and "Rickettsia quintana", is a micro-organism transmitted by the human body louse. This microorganism is the causative agent of the well known trench fever. This bacterium caused outbreaks of trench fever affecting 1 million soldiers in Europe during World War I.

Warthin–Starry stain

The Warthin–Starry stain (WS) is a silver nitrate-based staining method used in histology. It was first introduced in 1920 by American pathologists Aldred Scott Warthin (1866-1931) and Allen Chronister Starry (1890-1973), for the detection of spirochetes. It has been considered a standard stain for the detection of spirochetes, and is also used to stain Helicobacter pylori, Lawsonia intracellularis, Microsporidia, and particulates. It is also important for confirmation of Bartonella henselae, a causative organism in cat-scratch disease.

Pasteurella canis is a Gram-negative, nonmotile, penicillin-sensitive coccobacillus belonging to the Pasteurellaceae family. Bacteria from this family cause zoonotic infections in humans, which manifest themselves as skin or soft-tissue infections after an animal bite. It has been known to cause serious disease in immunocompromised patients.

Bartonella elizabethae, formerly known as Rochalimaea elizabethae, is a proteobacterium. Together with other Bartonella-species, it can cause disease in animals.

Afipia felis is the type species of the Afipia bacterial genus. It was formerly thought to cause cat-scratch disease. It is a Gram-negative, oxidase-positive, nonfermentative rod in the alpha-2 subgroup of the class Proteobacteria. It is motile by means of a single flagellum. It is noted for having the longest authority citation of any accepted species.

Afipia clevelandensis is a species of the Afipia bacterial genus. It is a gram-negative, oxidase-positive, non-fermentative rod in the alpha-2 subgroup of the class Proteobacteria. It is motile by means of a single flagellum.

Afipia broomeae is a species of the Afipia bacterial genus. It is a gram-negative, oxidase-positive, non-fermentative rod in the alpha-2 subgroup of the class Proteobacteria. It is motile by means of a single flagellum.

Bartonella koehlerae is a proteobacterium first isolated from cats. Its genome consists of 1.7-1.8 Mb.

Bartonella clarridgeiae is a Gram-negative bacteria from the genus of Bartonella which was first isolated in the United States. Bartonella clarridgeiae is a zoonotic pathogen which can cause cat scratch disease.


  1. Jerris RC, Regnery RL (1996). "Will the real agent of cat-scratch disease please stand up?". Annu. Rev. Microbiol. 50: 707–25. doi:10.1146/annurev.micro.50.1.707. PMID   8905096.
  2. Kavita Diddi; Rama Chaudhry; Nidhi Sharma; Benu Dhawan (28 March 2011). "Strategy for identification & characterization of Bartonella henselae with conventional & molecular methods". Indian Journal of Medical Research. 137 (2): 380–387. PMC   3657863 . PMID   23563383.
  3. Bernard La Scola; Didier Raoult (17 March 1999). "Culture of Bartonella quintana and Bartonella henselae from Human Samples: a 5-Year Experience (1993 to 1998)". Journal of Clinical Microbiology. 37 (6): 1899–1905. PMC   84980 . PMID   10325344.
  4. Parte, A.C. "Bartonella".
  5. Breitschwerdt, Edward B; Greenberg, Rosalie; Maggi, Ricardo G; Mozayeni, B Robert; Lewis, Allen; Bradley, Julie M (January 2019). "Bartonella henselae Bloodstream Infection in a Boy With Pediatric Acute-Onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome". Journal of Central Nervous System Disease. 11: 117957351983201. doi:10.1177/1179573519832014. ISSN   1179-5735.