Ureaplasma diversum

From Cow
Ureaplasma under light microscopy

Ureaplasma spp are a urease-positive mycoplasma which causes abortion in cattle worldwide.

Species which are pathogenic to cattle include:

  • Ureaplasma diversum

Ureaplasma diversum has been associated with various reproductive problems in cattle.

In cows, vaginitis is a common symptom, with endometritis, salpingitis, early embryonic death, weak calves and decreased conception rates also reported during and after pregnancy[1].

In bulls, balanoprosthitis, impaired spermatozoids and seminal vesiculitis has been observed[2]. In bulls, they colonizes the prepuce and distal portion of the urethra and may infect sperm cells[3].

Abortions from Ureaplasma are usually single, but severe outbreaks occur on occasion[4]. Most fetuses are aborted in the third trimester and some show signs of polyarthropathy[5][6]. A nonsuppurative placentitis and pneumonia are common observed as well.

Diagnosis is by isolation of Ureaplasma from the placenta, lungs or abomasal contents. PCR assays are available to detect this protozoan in suspect cattle.


  1. Petit T et al (2008) Prevalence of Chlamydiaceae and Mollicutes on the genital mucosa and serological findings in dairy cattle. Vet Microbiol 127(3-4):325-333
  2. Smith A et al (2012) Polymerase chain reaction for detection of Ureaplasma diversum from urogenital swabs in cattle in Australia. Aust Vet J 90(7):275-276
  3. Buzinhani M et al (2011) Invasion of Ureaplasma diversum in bovine spermatozoids. BMC Res Notes 4:455
  4. Gambarini ML et al (2009) Granular Vulvovaginitis Syndrome in Nelore pubertal and post pubertal replacement heifers under tropical conditions: role of Mycoplasma spp., Ureaplasma diversum and BHV-1. Trop Anim Health Prod 41(7):1421-1426
  5. Himsworth CG et al (2009) Destructive polyarthropathy in aborted bovine fetuses: a possible association with Ureaplasma diversum infection? Vet Pathol 46(2):269-272
  6. Merck Vet Manual