Also known as dysgonic fermenter type 2 (DF-2) and DF-2-like organisms. Part of the normal flora of many animal species' mouths, particularly dogs and cats these pleomorphic Gram-negative bacteria are commonly transmitted through bites and scratches but usually cause no or little disease in man. However, in immunosuppressed and splenectomised individuals, they can cause severe disease including septicaemia, septic endocarditis, arthritis, meningoencephalitis and death. It can take up to 10 days to detect Capnocytophaga spp in culture, so treatment is usually begun as soon as infection is suspected. Although most isolates are susceptible to penicillin, some are not, leading to further delays in onset of effective treatment.
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