Mycobacterium bovis causes disease in numerous mammalian species including humans, thus making research, surveillance, and control important in the eradication of tuberculosis. Domestic cats are susceptible to multiple mycobacterial species including Mycobacterium bovis; however, their role in the epidemiology of bovine tuberculosis is not fully documented. The current study was an evaluation of the immune response in specific pathogen-free (SPF) cats stimulated with sensitinogen, a heat-killed M. bovis product, using the rapid test, multiple antigen print immunoassay (MAPIA), and bovine-purified protein derivative (bPPD) single skin test. Six cats were inoculated with sensitinogen subcutaneously on days 0 and 24; 2 noninoculated cats and 49 non-SPF cats were controls. Serial serum samples were collected during 135 days and assayed for M. bovis antibodies by rapid test and MAPIA. On day 123, bPPD skin test was performed and read at 48 and 72 hr. The bPPD test at 72 hr had a mean skin thickness of 0.3 mm for stimulated cats and 0.1 mm for controls. Rapid test identified 4 of 6 stimulated cats after bPPD injection. The MAPIA detected antibody against MPB83, 16/83, 16 kDa, and M. bovis culture filtrate (MBCF) antigens. All assays differentiated between stimulated and control cats; however, 7 of 49 non-SPF control cats had a reaction for either antigen MBCF or 16/83. These preliminary studies show potential for antemortem detection of M. bovis among domestic cats. Additional studies to better characterize virulent M. bovis infection in cats would be of value.
- Mycobacterium bovis
ASJC Scopus subject areas