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Lesions of Experimental Equine Morbillivirus Pneumonia in Horses

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Hooper, P.T., Ketterer, P.J., Hyatt, A.D. and Russell, G.M. (1997) Lesions of Experimental Equine Morbillivirus Pneumonia in Horses. Veterinary Pathology, 34 (4). pp. 312-322. ISSN 0300-9858


Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1177/030098589703400407


Laboratory examinations of equine morbillivirus included experimental reproductions of the disease caused by the virus by transmission of mixed lung and spleen taken from two field equine cases into two horses and by inoculating tissue culture virus into a further two horses. The most distinctive gross lesions of the diseases that developed in three of the horses was that of pulmonary edema characterized by gelatinous distension of subpleural lymphatics. Histologically, the lesions in the lungs were those of serofibrinous alveolar edema, alveolar macrophages, hemorrhage, thrombosis of capillaries, and syncytial cells. Clearly defined vascular lesions in three horses that became clinically affected within 8 days of inoculation of virus included intramural hemorrhage, edema, and necrosis and syncytial cells in the endothelium of pulmonary vessels (∼40-70 μm in diameter). Vascular lesions accompanied by parenchymal degeneration were also seen in the heart, kidney, brain, spleen, lymph node, and stomach. A fourth horse, which survived for 12 days, had detectable lesions only in the lungs, which were more chronic than those in the other three horses, a greater degree of cellular infiltration, and fewer well-defined vascular lesions. Sections stained by an indirect immunocytochemical method showed equine morbillivirus antigen was present in the vascular lesions and along alveolar walls. When endothelial cells were examined by electron microscope, cytoplasmic virus inclusion bodies containing filamentous structures were seen that reacted to an immunogold test to equine morbillivirus antigen. The presence of the syncytia in the small blood vessels in the lungs and other organs was interpreted as an important characteristic of the disease and consistent with a reaction to a morbillivirus.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Veterinary medicine > Veterinary pathology
Veterinary medicine > Diseases of special classes of animals > Horses
Live Archive:16 Feb 2024 02:00
Last Modified:16 Feb 2024 02:00

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