First report of venereal and vertical transmission of canine leishmaniosis from naturally infected dogs in Germany


Canine leishmaniosis (CanL) caused by Leishmania (Leishmania) infantum (or its New World synonym Leishmania (L.) chagasi) is a zoonotic disease of major public health and veterinary importance with a wide geographical distribution. It is endemic in Mediterranean countries and in regions of Africa, Asia, South and Central America [1]. But CanL is also an important concern in non-endemic regions. In Germany, increasing numbers of dogs are becoming infected by L. infantum as a result of travelling to Mediterranean countries, or being imported from these regions. It is estimated that there are 20,000 infected dogs in Germany [2]. Canine infection is associated with variable clinical manifestations, ranging from unapparent subclinical infections to fatal visceralizing disease.