Felis ISSN 2398-2950

Clostridium perfringens

Synonym(s): C. perfringens

Contributor(s): Melissa Kennedy

Introduction

Classification

Taxonomy

  • Family: Bacillaceae.
  • Genus: Clostridium.
  • Species: Perfringens.

Etymology

  • Latin: Perfringens - breaking through.

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Clinical Effects

Epidemiology

Habitat

  • C. perfringens type A occurs in the intestinal tract of animals and human beings and in most soils.
  • Type B-E are found mostly in the intestines of animals.

Lifecycle

  • Germinate in the intestine and soil in anaerobic conditions.
  • Relatively aerotolerant, therefore spores are rarely seen.

Transmission

  • Ingestion.
  • Wound infection.

Pathological effects

  • Gas gangrene: type A, histotoxins produced are not as potent as the neurotoxins but the organisms are invasive. Disease caused varies from cellulitis to fatal gas gangrene.
  • Enterotoxemias: caused by the major enterotoxins of types B, C and D, occasionally type A. Type A associated with diarrhea in dogs and cats.

Control

Control via chemotherapies

  • Penicillin G Benzylpenicillin active against most strains of C. perfringens, as are metronidazole, and macrolides.

Vaccination

  • Toxoids vaccines are available for cattle and sheep.

Diagnosis

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from VetMed Resource and PubMed.
  • Daube G, Simon P, Limbourg B et al (1996) Hybridization of 2,659 Clostridium perfringens isolates with gene probes for seven toxins (alpha, beta, epsilon, iota, theta, mu and enterotoxin) and sialidase. Am J Vet Res 57(4), 496-501.
  • el-Sanousi S M et al (1992) An outbreak of enterotoxemia in cats. Zentralbl Veterinarmed 39(6), 403-409.
  • el-Sanousi S M et al(1991) Enterotoxemia in cats. Vet Rec 129(15), 344.
  • Dow S W et al (1986) Anaerobic bacterial infections and response to treatment in dogs and cats - 36 cases (1983-1985). JAVMA 189(8), 930-934.

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