Case Report Veterinarni Medicina, 58, 2013: (11): 594–598

Pericardial mesothelioma in a German Shepherd dog:
a case report
S. Ceribasi1, M. Ozkaraca2, A.O. Ceribasi1, H. Ozer1
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Firat, Elazig, Turkey
Veterinary Control Institute, Elazig, Turkey

ABSTRACT: In this case report, a diagnosis of pericardial mesothelioma in a four year old male German shepherd
dog is described. The dog, which had anorexia, bloody diarrhoea, dehydration and depression and, died on day 10
of therapy, was systematically necropsied. At necropsy, approximately 1.5 litres of cloudy and bloody exudate were
detected in the thoracic cavity. The parietal lamina of the pericardium was covered with multilobular nodular
masses related with each other, 1 to 5 cm in diameter and grey-yellow in colour. There were proliferations charac-
terised with grey-yellow colour and approximately 1 to 5 mm in length on visceral pleura. The presence of abscess
foci with liquefied-centrum was observed when examining a section surface of the lung. The appearance of the
oesophageal serosa, thoracic aorta and the thoracic section of the diaphragm were similar to pleura. A thickening
was microscopically determined in the parietal lamina of the pleura and pericardium due to papillary proliferations
consisting of cells similar to cubic or cylindrical epithelium. Severe lymphocyte and plasma cell infiltrations were
observed in the pleural sections next to the lung. Neoplastic cells had nuclei with large eosinophilic granular cyto-
plasms and large vesicular and single nucleoli. Some neoplastic cells were determined to include intracytoplasmic
vacuoles. The neoplastic cells contained some mitotic figures. It was observed that some tumour cells contributed
to giant cell formation through integration. In periodic acid Schiff-haematoxylin (PAS-H) examinations it was
determined that the pleural basal membrane maintained its integrity. Immunohistochemically, the tumour gave a
weak positive reaction with anti-pancytokeratin staining while giving intense reaction with anti-vimentin staining.

Keywords: dog; mesothelioma; pericardium

Mesothelioma is a rare tumour which either typical are excess effusions in cavities caused by
covers surfaces including the pericardium, pleura exudation and infiltration on tumourous surfaces
and peritoneum, or originates from the mesothelial or lymphatic vessels under the pressure of tumour-
cells in the tunica vaginalis of the testes (Head et al. ous tissues (Harbison and Godleski 1983; Ogilvie
2002; Caswell and Wiliams 2007). The prevalence and Moore 2006). Classical mesotheliomas are dif-
of this tumour has been reported as one in every fuse nodular multifocal masses that cover the body
1000 dogs (Garrett 2007). Although the tumour is cavities (Head et al. 2002). The primary sites of
mostly observed in dogs aged four to thirteen years tumour development in dogs as well as in humans
old (Head et al. 2002), juvenile mesothelioma and have been reported to be the pleura, followed by the
epitheloid mesothelioma in a nine-month puppy pericardium and the peritoneum (Garrett 2007).
have previously been described (Kim et al. 2002; Histologically, three main types of mesothelioma
Vural et al. 2007). The tumour is observed in males have been defined: epitheloid, sarcomatoid and bi-
more frequently than females and no breed predis- phasic or mixed in domestic animals (Head et al.
position has been reported up to now (Ledecka et 2002; Caswell and Wiliams 2007).
al. 2010). The most prominent and reliable clini- In this report we describe a case of epitheloid-
cal finding in mesothelioma is respiratory distress type pericardial mesothelioma with macroscopic,
caused by pleural exudation or abdominal disten- microscopic and immunohistochemical findings in
tion due to peritoneal fluid accumulation. Also a German shepherd used as a security tracking dog.


embedded cal epithelium covering a connective tissue rich in in paraffin. In the lungs Macroscopically. The parietal pericardium was covered with grey. The presence of abscess foci with liquefied-centrum was observed when a section surface of the lung was DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS Pericardial mesothelioma accompanying pleural effusion results in cardiac insufficiency (Cobb and Brownlie 1992). 1980). Figure 1. tracheobronchial lymph nodes and diarrhoea. There were no changes on the visceral vitamin treatment because of anorexia. The pleura were also of similar histologi- Mouse anti-human vimentin and pancytokeratin cal appearance and there were marked lympho- kits (Dako Corp. tissue. The appearances of the oesophageal se- rosa. anti-vimentin staining (Figure 2G. mitted to the pathology department for diagnosis. The integrity of the pleural ba- sections were used as positive and negative controls sal membrane was preserved in the examination for vimentin and pan-cytokeratin. There were ex- avidin-biotin-peroxidase complex method for pan. tensive neutrophil infiltrations in the connective cytokeratin and vimentin antibodies (Bourne 1985). and cross sections were stained with capillary proliferations were observed in the peri- haematoxylin and eosin (HE) and periodic acid cardium (Figure 2A). approximately 1500 ml of cloudy and the bronchial lymph nodes. 2013 (11): 594–598 Case Report Case description examined. diaphragm were similar to pleural and pericardial which had died on the tenth day of antibiotic and surfaces. Immune complexes were stained with di. the present case was di- agnosed as pericardial mesothelioma spreading to the pleura and serosal surfaces by implantation.Veterinarni Medicina. tive reactions with anti-pancytokeratin staining tion and the pleura was covered by rough irregular (Figure 2E. The sections were tumour cells contributed to giant cell formation also immunohistochemically stained utilising the through integration (Figure 2B). thoracic aorta and the thoracic surface of the A four-year-old male German shepherd dog. collected tissue samples were of mesothelial cells similar to cubic or cylindri- fixed in 10% neutral buffered formalin. When the development of lesions was considered. F) while giving intense reactions with velvet-like proliferations. Some neoplastic cells were determined to aminobenzidine tetrahydrochloride. dehydration and depression. The alveoli in some regions of the lungs ish-yellow coloured multilobular nodular masses were atelectatic and some were emphysematous. the peritoneum along with internal organs. The Immunohistochemically. papillary proliferations composed Following necropsy. greyish-yellow in colour. CA) that were used cyte and plasmocyte infiltrations adjacent to the as primary antibodies were diluted to 1 : 100. bloody pericardium. Macroscopic appearance of the pericardial and Although clinical and pathological character- pleural surfaces istics have been defined in natural mesothelioma 595 . ranging from about 1 to 5 cm in diameter. was ad. it is recognised as a ma- lignant tumour as it invades the lymph vessels or rapidly spreads by implantation (Ikede et al. diaphragm and the esophageal serosa. and approximately 1 to 5 mm length (Figure 1). Neoplastic layer was the positive control for pancytokeratin. The epidermal performed with PAS-H (Figure 2D). extensive cytoplasmic hemosiderin pigment were ty. It was observed that some Schiff-haematoxylin (PAS-H). H). these gave weak posi- lungs were collapsed and atelectatic due to exuda. While the tumour shows its effect where it is first located. Histologically. cells had nuclei with large eosinophilic granular while the dermal layer was the positive control for cytoplasms and with large vesicular and single nu- vimentin. 58. and counter. as well as the pericardial surface. detected. Skin lungs (Figure 2C). cells contained a few mitotic figures. In the present case. Carpinteria. nodular or velvet-like prolifera- tive lesions were observed on the visceral pleura. include intracytoplasmic vacuoles. cleoli. The neoplastic stained with Mayer’s haematoxylin (MH). macrophages with and bloody exudate were found in the thoracic cavi.

Giant cell formations in the tumour cells (arrow heads). D. Head et al. Appearance of pleural basement membrane (arrow heads). Weak immu- nohistochemical reaction with anti-pancytokeratin antibody in the neoplastic cells. Higher magnification anti-pancytokeratin staining in the neoplastic mesothelial cells. Intense immuno- histochemical reaction with anti-vimentin antibody in the tumour cells. G. 1983). HE. bar = 200 µm. HE.Case Report Veterinarni Medicina. bar = 200 µm. al. Caswell and genetic factors and some viruses have also been Wiliams 2007). Histological appearance of the pericardium. bar = 50 µm. H. A. According to the reports of dog reported to lead to tumour development (Cacciotti owners. PAS-H. MH. bar = 50 µm. 2001). C. bar = 50 µm cases in dogs. 2013: (11): 594–598 Figure 2. E. bar = 50 µm. and Godleski 1983. B. high rates of asbestos were detected in the et al. MH. MH. Asbestos particles taken in through the 596 . However. F. and silicate (Harbison mesothelioma (Ogilvie and Moore 2006). bar = 200 µm. the etiological and epidemiological lungs of dogs belonging to people in contact with factors that cause these tumours are not yet un. MH. asbestos in their professional life (Glickmann et derstood. One of the etiological factors of meso. 2002. Mononuclear cell infiltrations in the border of the pleura (arrow heads). It has been stated that pesticides are im- thelioma is contact with chemical substances such portant etiological factors in the development of as asbestos (primarily). 58. bar = 200 µm. PAS-H. Higher magnification anti-vimentin staining in the neoplastic cells. iron.

Webb R. 2010). 58. Elsevier. 2012). Libener R. Harbison ML. In: has been reported to be rare (Kim et al. cells and papillary formations (Caswell and Wiliams Bourne JA (ed. may have developed as a result of lung exposure to asbestos and other chemical substances through the respiratory tract. Brownlie SE (1992): Intrapericardial neopla- nosis of mesotheliomas generally depends on its sia in 14 dogs. Iowa. Wiliams K (2007): Respiratory system. 224–231. thelial cells induces HGF/Met receptor activation: a Mesotheliomas show malignant characteristics at model for viral-related carcinogenesis of human ma- low rates. New York.): Small Animal Clinical Oncology. Betta P. Caswell and Wiliams 98. Kapakin et al. sarcoma and other spindle cell tumours. lioma (Ledecka et al. on the macroscopic appearance and distribution sor genes (Jaurand and Fleury-Feith 2005). 2013 (11): 594–598 Case Report respiratory tract in humans spread to the pleura for the epithelial marker pancytokeratin and the through the lymphatic system and cause chromo. invade the tissues at minimal degrees. Immunohistochemistry Labora- appearance to a fibrosarcoma has been described tory. Biphasic or mixed type denotes mesothe. Vail and other epithelium-originated tumours. In: Withrow SJ. 2002). Pro- 2012). less frequently (Head et al. In the differen. Cacciotti P.) (1985): Handbook of Immunoperoxidase 2007). In: Meuten DJ (ed. Veterinary ferentiate as mesothelial cells distinct from epithe. Dubielzig differentiation of mixed type. 5th ed. but Maxie M (ed. Dojcinov SD. Tognon M. Domanski LM. Godleski JJ (1983): Malignant mesothe- tiating mesothelioma.): Tumours in is generally used to differentiate it from cytokera. which is similar in Staining Methods. basic histological characteristics. DAKO Corporation. Pathology 17. tiation of epitheloid mesotheliomas. the differentiation of sarcomatoid mesothelioma. Saunders Elsevier. Cobb MA. Penengo L. Vimentin-positivity is used lioma in Urban dogs. tin-negative sarcomas (Kapakin et al. the animal was a tracking dog. 2002. 531– to differentiate mesothelioma from pulmonary 540. Journal of Small Animal Practise 33. other mixed tumours RR. 17–34. and in the Glickmann LT. USA. somal defects in mitotic mesothelial cells. Head KW. mesenchymal marker vimentin. Domestic Animals. 597 . Histopathology of the similarity of the tumour cells to epithelial 37. Porta C. Kennedy.Veterinarni Medicina. Respirology 10. 309–311. Strizzi L. 496–499. 2–8. Gaudino G (2001): SV40 replication in human meso- eloid and sarcomatoid types (Sevcikova et al. Zubaidy A. carcinoma by vimentin negativity. Envi- considered (Head et al. 2002. because oma and other spindle cell neoplasms. Magure TG. in this case. Churg A (1983): Mesothelioma in pet dogs associ- such as synovial-originating tumours should be ated with exposure of the owners to asbestos. 4 th ed. the tumour munohistochemical characteristics. 2007). Jaurand MC. and in DM (eds. liomas that carry both characteristics of the epith. In this of the tumour and the histopathological and im- case. the tumour cells were positive lignant pleural mesothelioma. pancytokera. Genetic In conclusion. Else RW. 12032–12037. copio A. 523– was detected in a dog with pericardial mesothe. Attanoos RL. 2007). Both 401–481. The Anti-mesothelial markers in sarcomatoid mesotheli- most common form is the epitheloid type.): Jubb. Veterinary Pathology 20. othelioma with cardiac tamponade in a dog. Mutti L. carcinomas Garrett LD (2007): Mesothelioma. sarcomatoid and biphasic or mixed. Martini F. 2002. lial and mesenchymal cells (Attanoos et al. Gibbs AR (2000): theloid. 4 th ed. The sarcomatoid type. Iowa State Press. The differential diag. Proceedings of the National and rarely metastasise to lymph nodes and remote Academy of Sciences of the United States of America tissues (Head et al. 2000). Caswell and Wiliams ronmental Research 32. 847 pp. 2000). 655. 305–313. Fleury-Feith J (2005): Pathogenesis of ma- In the present case. Immunohistochemistry is useful in differen. Dubielzig RR (2002): Tumours of tin-positivity in sarcomatoid type mesotheliomas the alimentary tract. The visceral metastasis of mesothelioma Caswell J. and Palmer’s Pathology metastasis to the accessory lobe of the right lung of Domestic Animals. a diagnosis of peri- mutations in mesothelial cells have been reported cardial epitheloid mesothelioma was made based to occur by inactivation or loss of tumour suppres. lignant mesotelioma. positive pancytokeratin and vimentin staining are Ikede BO. Gill CW (1980): Pericardial mes- constant features of mesotheliomas which may dif. REFERENCES Mainly three types of mesotheliomas have been histologically defined in domestic animals: epi.

269–271. Skurkova L. NJ. 23119 Elazig. Kolodzieyski Ozyildiz Z. Yucel G Ogilvie GK. Kim JH. thelioma in a nine month-old dog. Ledecka K. Indian Veterinary Journal 77. Veterinary Learning Systems Book. Irish Veterinary thelioma of the pericardium in a Bernese Mountain Journal 1. Ozsoy SY (2007): Pleural meso- Mesothelioma of the pericardium in a Bernese meso. 2013: (11): 594–598 Kapakin Terim 598 . Moore AS (2006): Managing the Canine Can- (2012): Mesothelioma in a dog. Firat University. Turkey E-mail: songulozer@firat. Ledecky V (2010): Vural SA. Hajurka J. Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. Lackova M. 151–153. Levkut M. Gursan N. Journal of Sevcik A (2000): Malignant and biphasic peritoneal Veterinary Medical Science 64. Veterinarski Arhiv 80. Hluchy M.Case Report Veterinarni Medicina. Mihaly M. 797–806. 733. Kim DY (2002): Sevcikova Z. Veterinary Journal of cer Patient: A Practical Guide to Compassionate Care. mesothelioma in dogs. Kweon OK. Ankara University 59. 30–33. Juvenile malignant mesotelioma in a dog. Choi YK. 58. Trenton. Haziroglu R. Sevcikova Z. Pavuk V. dog. 852–855. Department of Pathology. Yoon HY. Received: 2012–11–06 Accepted after revision: 2013–11–20 Corresponding Author: Songul Ceribasi. Ledecky V.