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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Grant, Russell
item Whitehead, Terence
item Orr, James

Submitted to: Journal of Clinical Microbiology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/28/1999
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Streptococcus bovis is a bacterium that is normally found in the rumen of ruminant animals such as cattle and sheep and has potential as an industrial organism for production of such products as lactate and ethanol. S. bovis is also rarely isolated from humans but has been reported to cause such diseases as endocarditis and meningitis. Recent reports also suggest a correlation between increased levels of S. bovis and human colonic cancer. Identification of human isolates of S. bovis has been a problem due to differences in biochemical characteristics between the human and ruminal strains of S. bovis. In order to overcome this problem, we have developed new tests to identify human and ruminal strains of S. bovis. These tests were used to help identify a strain of S. bovis that caused a rare meningitis in an infant. The results indicated that the S. bovis was of human origin and not ruminal origin.

Technical Abstract: Streptococcus bovis is a nonenterococcal, group D streptococcus which has been identified as a causative agent for serious human infections including endocarditis, bacteremia, and septic arthritis. Several cases of adult S. bovis meningitis have been reported, usually in association with underlying disease. In the neonatal period, it is an uncommon agent of meningitis. We report, to our knowledge, the third documented case of neonatal S. bovis meningitis in the English literature. As in those previous cases, this neonate showed no anatomical or congenital immunologic lesion which might be expected to predispose to meningitis. Sequencing of 16S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) gene and use of a new PCR test was performed to secure a more reliable identification of the strain.

Last Modified: 06/22/2017
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