Chapter 5 : Pathogens of Guinea Pigs

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Biomedical uses of guinea pigs have included studies of gnotobiology, nutrition, toxicology, complement biology, pulmonary physiology, opportunistic AIDS infections, and auditory research. Guinea pigs are susceptible to a wide range of pathogens. Despite tremendous improvements in laboratory animal husbandry, a significant number of guinea pigs used in research continue to harbor natural pathogens capable of altering research findings. A more complete discussion of the biology of the cytomegaloviruses (CMVs) is presented. One report described clinical disease in two guinea pigs, one of which died, presumably of natural Guinea pig cytomegalovirus (GPCMV) infection, although other causes of death were not entirely ruled out. Clinical signs of lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) infection in guinea pigs are uncommon. most commonly presents as ocular or genital infections. When evident, clinical signs may therefore include mild chemosis (edema in the conjunctiva), conjunctivitis, and ocular discharge; vaginitis; urethritis; and cystitis. Natural infections of laboratory rats and mice with have been shown to alter a variety of physiologic functions. These findings should be extrapolated to the guinea pig with caution. Guinea pigs are host to , an opportunistic protozoon parasite in the phylum Apicomplexa. Clinical disease is more common in young guinea pigs and may be potentiated by infection. Clinical signs may include diarrhea, weight loss, emaciation, and death. is an Apicomplexan parasite capable of causing disease in guinea pigs. Prevention is through obtaining -free guinea pigs, and adherence to strict husbandry standards.

Citation: Baker D. 2003. Pathogens of Guinea Pigs, p 129-146. In Natural Pathogens of Laboratory Animals. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817824.ch5
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Body systems known or likely to be affected by pathogen indicated

Citation: Baker D. 2003. Pathogens of Guinea Pigs, p 129-146. In Natural Pathogens of Laboratory Animals. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817824.ch5

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