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Reptiles and Amphibians

Immunohistochemical Demonstration of Ranavirus Antigen in the Tissues of

Infected Frogs (Rana temporaria) with Systemic Haemorrhagic or Cutaneous
Ulcerative Disease: Affected frogs can have skin ulceration (ulcerative syndrome) or
Systemic haemorrhage (haemorrhagic syndrome) or may be both. Unlike with
hemorrhagic syndrome, there was no labelling for viral antigen in the splenic
lymphocytes, pancreas or gastrointestinal epithelium with ulcerative syndrome. I/C virus
inclusions were seen in the liver, kidney, pancreas and stomach of frogs with systemic
haemorrhagic disease, but not in frogs with the ulcerative syndrome.

Detection of Cryptosporidium spp., Entamoeba spp. and Monocercomonas spp. in

the Gastrointestinal Tract of Snakes by In-situ Hybridization: Cryptosporidium
serpentis, causes gastric mucosal hyperplasia, dilatation of gastric glands, fibrosis edema
and patchy inflammation of the mucosa. Entamoeba invadens, present but rarely causes
disease in Turtles. When transmitted to carnivorous snakes, causes severe diphtheroid
colitis. Monocercomonas colubrorum is flagellate belonging to the order
Trichomonadida, frequently found in snakes, but clinical signs are rare, may cause
mucopurulent gastritis and enteritis

Localization of Fibropapilloma-associated Turtle Herpesvirus in Green Turtles

(Chelonia mydas) by In-Situ Hybridization. (J. Comp. Path. 2008, Vol. 139,
218e225). It was found that viral mRNA was demonstrated only in fibropapillomas, but
viral DNA was found in both fibropapillomas and fibromas. In fibropapillomas the virus
was found replicating in the neoplastic cells which could be identified as intranuclear

Infestation of Wild-caught American Bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana) by

Multiple Species of Metazoan Parasites Heavy parasitism of wild-caught
bullfrogs may confound research protocols and markedly impair animal


Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 39(4): 600–607, 2008-
Cryptosporidium varanii (saurophilis). C. parvum and muris are not
thought to cause disease in reptiles. C. serpentis is found in snakes.
Small intestine infection is most common in Geckos, leading to
lymphoplasmacytic enteritis and hyperplasia. Infection is occasionally
associated with atrophic gastritis.

Newly Identified Mycobacterium Species in a Xenopus laevis

Colony. Vol 57, No 1
February 2007. Granulomatous inflammatory lesions with acid-fast
bacilli were generally present in the liver, lung, or spleen.
Mycobacterium (provisionally named M. liflandii) recently reported by 2
other groups.

Antemortem diagnosis and characterization of nasal

intranuclear coccidiosis in Sulawesi tortoises (Indotestudo
forsteni ). J Vet Diagn Invest 19:660–667 (2007). Rhinosinusitis is a
common clinical syndrome in tortoises, often caused by Mycoplasma
agassizii or herpesvirus. This study documents the presence of
intranuclear coccidia and Mycoplasma spp. moderate-to-marked
hyperplasia of the respiratory epithelium. A lymphoplasmacytic
inflammatory response with smaller numbers of granulocytes and
macrophages was evident in the submucosa with occasional migration
into the overlying epithelial layers. Focal necrosis was noted in the
mucosal epithelial layers. Intranuclear coccidian gametes and meronts
were detected in the apical respiratory epithelial cells; rarely, oocysts
were noted in the surface mucus. Infected nuclei were often enlarged
and contained one or more organisms. Trophozoites were 2–5 mm in
diameter. Meronts were up to 7 mm in diameter and contained
numerous merozoites (Fig. 4). Merozoites were banana shaped,
measured 4.0 3 1.5 mm, and budded from a residuum. The merozoites
had apicomplexan features characterized by a distinct apical conoid
apparatus, numerous rhoptries, and a single central to slightly
eccentric nucleus (Fig. 5). Macrogametes and microgametes measured
up to 6 mm in diameter.

Severe Granulomatous Lesions in Several Organs from Eustrongylides Larvae in a

Free-ranging Dice Snake, Natrix tessellate. Vet Pathol 44:103–105 (2007).
Nematode larvae surrounded by a capsule, forming a parasitic granuloma with 3 layers:
macrophage layer, lymphocyte layer, and fibrous capsule. Differences between newly
formed and mature granulomas consisted mainly in the eosinophilic infiltration.
subcutaneous connective tissues, on the serosae of the intestines and liver.

Chlamydiae in Free-Ranging and Captive Frogs in Switzerland. Vet Pathol 44:144–

150 (2007). Of the frogs collected for the prevalence study, 6 of 238 (2.5%) tested
positive. no connection to a mass mortality.

Experimental Transmission and Induction of Ranaviral Disease in Western Ornate

Box Turtles (Terrapene ornata ornata) and Red-Eared Sliders (Trachemys scripta
elegans). Vet Pathol 44:285–297 (2007). Consistent histologic lesions were observed
only in IM-inoculated turtles and included fibrinoid vasculitis centered on splenic
ellipsoids, multifocal hepatic necrosis, and multicentric fibrin thrombi in a variety of
locations, including hepatic sinusoids, glomerular capillary loops, and pulmonary
capillaries. Virions compatible with Ranavirus (Iridoviridae) were observed within
necrotic cells of the spleen of 1 IM-inoculated turtle using transmission electron
microscopy. This study fulfills Koch’s postulates, confirming a causal relationship
between BSTRV and the clinical and histologic changes in chelonians infected with this

Spinal Arthropathy Associated with Ochrobactrum anthropi in Free-ranging Cane Toads (Chaunus
[Bufo] marinus) in Australia Vet Path 2008 Jan: Lesions consisted primarily of ventral proliferation of
bone and cartilage that resulted in ankylosis and histologically there was pyogranulomatous inflammation.
Ochrobactrum anthropi was isolated in 7 out of 9 toads. Cane toadswere introduced into coastal
Queensland, Australia, from Hawaii in 1936 in a strategy to control the sugar cane beetle.

Characterization of a Biphasic Neoplasm in a Madagascar Tree Boa Vet Path 2008 Mar:
Disseminated biphasic neoplasm in a young Madagascar tree boa present composed of discrete neoplastic
cells (pulmonary capillaries and hepatic sinusoids) represented the leukemic phase and spindloid cells
represented the sarcomatous phase (hepatic and fat body nodules). A zone of transition of the neoplastic
cells, from discrete to spindloid, was noted along the periphery of the hepatic and fat body nodules.
Ultrastructural examination elucidated similar nuclear features in the discrete and spindloid neoplastic cells
and revealed collagen fibers within the spindloid neoplastic cells.

Oviduct Adenocarcinoma in Some Species of Captive Snakes. Vet Pathol 45:693–697 (2008).
Microscopically, neoplasms were papillary, and often extended transmurally. The neoplastic cells were
polygonal and organized in acini or cords, with often abundant fibrovascular stroma. Hemorrhages and
necrosis were present in all cases. Inflammation, myxomatous material, desmoplasia, and bacteria were
often observed. Histologic evidence of metastasis was present in all cases.

Metastatic fibrosarcoma in a captive Saharan horned viper (Cerastes cerastes) with

high hepatic levels of cadmium. Veterinary Record (2009) 164, 690-692. Cadmium
is carcinogenic, no viruses were found in the tumors.

Systemic Adenovirus Infection in Bearded Dragons (Pogona vitticeps): Histological,

Ultrastructural and Molecular Findings J. Comp. Path. 2009, Vol. 141, 78-83 : non-
suppurative hepatitis and interstitial nephritis.

Systemic adenovirus infection in Sulawesi tortoises (Indotestudo forsteni ) caused by

a novel siadenovirus. J Vet Diagn Invest 21:415–426 (2009). A novel siadenovirus
was identified in the Sulawesi tortoise. mucosal ulcerations and palatine erosions of the
oral cavity, nasal and ocular discharge. Histopathologic examination revealed systemic
inflammation and necrosis associated with intranuclear inclusions consistent with a
systemic viral infection. This finding extends the known reptilian adenoviruses to the
chelonians and extends the known genera of reptilian Adenoviridae beyond Atadenovirus
to include the genus Siadenovirus. Intranuclear inclusions were found in most of the
organs examined, including the bone marrow. The adenoviral inclusions were
endotheliotropic and epitheliotropic, as well as myelotropic.

Intranuclear coccidiosis in tortoises: 9 cases. pp311-20. May 2006 JTP

- systemic infection, involving GIT, urogenital, respiratory, lymphoid, endocrine, & skin
- intranuclear trophozoites, meronts, merozoites, macrogametocytes, microgametocytes,
nonsporulated oocysts seen w/histo or EM
- histo: also see intracytoplasmic & extracellular stages
- variable degrees of inflammation in all cases
- most common coccidia of chelonians: Eimeria spp.
- some species of Eimeria, Isospora, & Cyclospora are caryotropic (have
intranuclear stages)
- Intranuclear coccidiosis associated with inflammation in all cases, was considered the
cause of death in six tortoises, and was a substantial contributing factor to the cause of
death in two tortoises

Rhabditid nematode–associated ophthalmitis and meningoencephalomyelitis in

captive Asian horned frogs (Megophrys montana). J Vet Diagn Invest 21:568–573
(2009). Gross and histologic findings included varying degrees of ulcerative
keratitis, histiocytic uveitis and retinitis, meningoencephalomyelitis, and epidermal
chromatophore (iridophore) hyperplasia with intralesional nematodes. Caenorhabditis

Primary Osteoma cutis in a European Pond Turtle: JAVMA 2009: Pedunculated

symmetric mass from the epidermis. Contained highly sclerotic lamellar bone with
hematopoeietic elements.

Renal Myxozoanosis in Crowned River Turtles Hardella thurjii: Description of the Putative Agent
Myxidium hardella n. sp. by Histopathology, Electron Microscopy, and DNA Sequencing:
Histologically, renal intratubular myxozoan spores were associated with renal tubular necrosis, tubular
mineralization, and chronic interstitial nephritis, with membranoproliferative and mesangioproliferative
glomerulopathy. Both turtles also had disseminated metastatic mineralization. Myxozoa have recently been
reclassified from protozoan to metazoan organisms. Almost all representatives of this phylum are parasites
of fish.

Gastric Neuroendocrine Carcinomas in Bearded Dragons (Pogona vitticeps). Vet

Pathol 46:1109–1116 (2009). gastric neuroendocrine carcinomas, which readily
metastasize. immunolabeling for somatostatin was consistently observed in all
neoplasms, a diagnosis of somatostatinoma was made. In humans, pancreatic
somatostatinomas are associated with a syndrome of hypersomatostatinemia, which
includes hyperglycemia, weight loss, and anemia, as observed in some of these bearded
dragons. Somatostatinomas in humans are commonly associated with neurofibromatosis
type 1 (Von Recklinghausen’s disease), caused by a mutation in the tumor suppressor
gene NF1.