Identification and prevalence of an enterotoxin-related gene, se-int, in Staphylococcus intermedius isolates from dogs and pigeons


Keiko Futagawa-Saito, Department of Animal Health 2, School of Veterinary Medicine, Azabu University, 1-17-71 Fuchinobe, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 229-8501, Japan (e-mail:


Aims:  To determine the prevalence of enterotoxin-producing Staphylococcus intermedius in dogs and pigeons.

Methods and Results:  A total of 106 S. intermedius isolates from 44 dogs and 62 pigeons were tested for the production of enterotoxins A, B, C and D by reverse passive latex agglutination (RPLA) and for sec-canine by PCR. Only one isolate from dog was positive for SEC and sec-canine. Screening of sec-canine-negative strains by nested PCR led to the identification of a novel enterotoxin-related gene, se-int. SE-int showed a significant homology (59–61% identity) with SEC and (56·6% identity) SEB. All 44 isolates from dogs and five isolates (8·1%) from pigeons were se-int positive.

Conclusions:  While S. intermedius was isolated more frequently from pigeons than from dogs, se-int was more prevalent among the S. intermedius isolates from dogs, compared with the pigeon isolates.

Significance and Impact of the Study:  Further characterization of the se-int-positive S. intermedius strains should clarify their pathogenic potential including enterotoxigenicity and zoonotic transmissibility to human beings.