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PHIL 3621.tif
Gram-stained photomicrograph depicting numerous Pasteurella multocida bacteria

Pasteurellosis is an infection with a species of the bacterial genus Pasteurella,[1] which is found in humans and other animals.

Pasteurella multocida (subspecies P. m. septica and P. m. multocida) is carried in the mouth and respiratory tract of various animals, including pigs.[2] It is a small, Gram-negative bacillus with bipolar staining by Wayson stain. In animals, it can originate in fulminant septicaemia (chicken cholera), but is also a common commensal.

Until taxonomic revision in 1999,[3] Mannheimia spp. were classified as Pasteurella spp., and infections by organisms now called Mannheimia spp., as well as by organisms now called Pasteurella spp., were designated as pasteurellosis. The term "pasteurellosis" is often still applied to mannheimiosis, although such usage has declined.


The several forms of the infection are:

Other locations are possible, such as septic arthritis, meningitis, and acute endocarditis, but are very rare.

Signs and symptoms

a) Inflammatory oedema both upper and lower lids with purulent encystment b) contrast medium shows absence of intra-orbital extension arrow c) evidence of gram-negative bacilli. d) smooth, grey, non hemolytic colonies cultured on blood agar e) positive oxydase test f) API-20E array results g) lessening of inflammatory oedema after amoxicillin administration

The clinical presentation is a local wound infection which can become a serious soft tissue infection[5]


Among the possible complications are the following:[5]


The transmition occurs via animal bites or scratches, furthermore the animal can transmit the bacteria without being ill [5]


Diagnosis is made with isolation of Pasteurella multocida in a normally sterile site (blood, pus, or cerebrospinal fluid).[citation needed]


As the infection is usually transmitted into humans through animal bites, antibiotics usually treat the infection, but medical attention should be sought if the wound is severely swelling. Pasteurellosis is usually treated with high-dose penicillin if severe. Either tetracycline or chloramphenicol provides an alternative in beta-lactam-intolerant patients. However, it is most important to treat the wound.[citation needed]


P. multocida causes numerous pathological conditions in domestic animals. It often acts with other infectious agents, such as Chlamydia and Mycoplasma species and viruses. Environmental conditions (transportation, housing deficiency, and bad weather) also play a role.

These diseases are considered caused by P. multocida, alone or associated with other pathogens:

  • Shipping fever in cattle and sheep ("shipping fever" may also be caused by Mannheimia haemolytica, in the absence of P. multocida,[6][7] and M. haemolytica serovar A1 is known as the most common cause of the disease.[6] The pathologic condition commonly arises where the causative organism becomes established by secondary infection, following a primary bacterial or viral infection, which may occur after stress, e.g. from handling or transport.[7])
  • Enzootic pneumonia of sheep (and goats, with frequent intervention of M. haemolytica)
  • Fowl cholera (chicken and other domestic poultry and cage birds)
  • Enzootic pneumonia and atrophic rhinitis of pigs
  • Pasteurellosis of chinchillas
  • Pasteurellosis of rabbits
  • Pasteurellosis is suspected to be the cause of recurrent mass mortality of Saiga antelopes.[8]

See also


  1. Kuhnert P; Christensen H, eds. (2008). Pasteurellaceae: Biology, Genomics and Molecular Aspects. Caister Academic Press. ISBN 978-1-904455-34-9. Archived from the original on 2016-08-13. Retrieved 2021-06-02.
  2. Hunt Gerardo, S.; Citron, D. M.; Claros, M. C.; Fernandez, H. T.; Goldstein, E. J. C. (2001). "Pasteurella multocida subsp. multocida and P. multocida subsp. septica Differentiation by PCR Fingerprinting and -Glucosidase Activity". Journal of Clinical Microbiology. 39 (7): 2558–2564. doi:10.1128/JCM.39.7.2558-2564.2001. ISSN 0095-1137. PMC 88184. PMID 11427568.
  3. Angen Ø, Mutters R, Caugant DA, Olsen JE, Bisgaard M (1999). "Taxonomic relationships of the [Pasteurella] haemolytica complex as evaluated by DNA-DNA hybridizations and 16S rRNA sequencing with proposal of Mannheimia haemolytica gen. nov., comb. nov., Mannheimia granulomatis comb. nov., Mannheimia glucosida sp. nov., Mannheimia ruminalis sp. nov. and Mannheimia varigena sp. nov". Int. J. Syst. Bacteriol. 49 (Pt 1): 67–86. doi:10.1099/00207713-49-1-67. PMID 10028248.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  4. Lloret, Albert; Egberink, Herman; Addie, Diane; Belák, Sándor; Boucraut-Baralon, Corine; Frymus, Tadeusz; Gruffydd-Jones, Tim; Hartmann, Katrin; Hosie, Margaret J; Lutz, Hans; Marsilio, Fulvio; Möstl, Karin; Pennisi, Maria Grazia; Radford, Alan D; Thiry, Etienne; Truyen, Uwe; Horzinek, Marian C (2013). "Pasteurella Multocida Infection in Cats" (PDF). Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery. 15 (7): 570–572. doi:10.1177/1098612X13489215. ISSN 1098-612X. PMID 23813817. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2017-09-22. Retrieved 2021-06-02.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 "Pasteurellosis: characteristics, diagnosis and management". GOV.UK. Archived from the original on 26 October 2021. Retrieved 31 January 2022.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Zecchinon L, Fett T, Desmecht D (2005). "How Mannheimia haemolytica defeats host defence through a kiss of death mechanism". Vet. Res. 36 (2): 133–56. doi:10.1051/vetres:2004065. PMID 15720968.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Brogden KA, Lehmkuhl HD, Cutlip RC (1998). "Pasteurella haemolytica complicated respiratory infections in sheep and goats". Vet. Res. 29 (3–4): 233–54. PMID 9689740.
  8. Saigas on the brink: Multidisciplinary analysis of the factors influencing mass mortality events. Richard A. Kock,, Mukhit Orynbayev, Sarah Robinson, Steffen Zuther, Navinder J. Singh, Wendy Beauvais, Eric R. Morgan, Aslan Kerimbayev, Sergei Khomenko, Henny M. Martineau, Rashida Rystaeva, Zamira Omarova, Sara Wolfs, Florent Hawotte, Julien Radoux and Eleanor J. Milner-Gulland. Science Advances 17 Jan 2018: Vol. 4, no. 1, eaao2314 DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aao2314

External links