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Chapter 12 : Microsporidia in Higher Vertebrates

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Abstract:

was first reported in rabbits and laboratory rodents in the early 1920s, and this species remains the most frequently observed organism in nonhuman vertebrates. Serological surveys reported prevalence rates as high as 80% in hamsters, 30% in rats, and 85% in guinea pigs. This chapter describes microsporidial infections in a variety of domestic mammalian hosts such as mice, rats, guinea pigs and hamsters, and wild mammalian hosts such as rodents and rabbits. It discusses a few cases of naturally occurring microsporidiosis that have been reported in nonhuman primates. The chapter also talks about microsporidial infections in dometic animal hosts and wild carnivores. Until recently, the species of microsporidia in avian tissues had not been determined, and no parasite species had been categorized as an avian pathogen. Only a few cases of naturally occurring microsporidiosis, including several different parasite genera, are reported in amphibian or reptile hosts.

Citation: Snowden K, Shadduck J. 1999. Microsporidia in Higher Vertebrates, p 393-417. In Wittner M, Weiss L (ed), The Microsporidia and Microsporidiosis. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818227.ch12

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FIGURE 1

Histologic lesions in immunodeficient mouse tissues. (A) Adrenal medulla of an athymic mouse experimentally infected with . There is massive necrosis of the adrenal medullary cells with collapse of the normal architecture and infiltration of macrophages with a few lymphocytes. Many macrophages and adrenal medullary cells are infected with organisms (arrows). Gram stain was used. (B) Lung of an athymic mouse experimentally infected with . Moderate interstitial pneumonitis and a granuloma composed of macrophages and lymphocytes characterize this lesion. Hematoxylin and eosin stain was used. (C) Pancreas of an athymic mouse experimentally infected with There is massive necrosis and collapse of the exocrine pancreas with masses of neutrophils. Pancreatic exocrine cells and macrophages are filled with parasites. Gram stain was used.

Citation: Snowden K, Shadduck J. 1999. Microsporidia in Higher Vertebrates, p 393-417. In Wittner M, Weiss L (ed), The Microsporidia and Microsporidiosis. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818227.ch12
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Image of FIGURE 2
FIGURE 2

Histologic lesions in domestic rabbit tissues. (A) Cerebral cortex from a rabbit spontaneously infected with . Focal necrosis, lymphocytic infiltration, activated microglia, and masses of organisms (arrows) characterize the lesion. Hematoxylin and eosin stain was used. (B) Kidney of a rabbit spontaneously infected with Masses of parasites are present either free in the lumen or in parasitophorous vacuoles of renal tubular epithelial cells. There is very little interstitial inflammation. Gram stain was used.

Citation: Snowden K, Shadduck J. 1999. Microsporidia in Higher Vertebrates, p 393-417. In Wittner M, Weiss L (ed), The Microsporidia and Microsporidiosis. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818227.ch12
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Image of FIGURE 3
FIGURE 3

Histologic lesions in dog tissues. (A) Brain of a dog spontaneously infected with There is severe lymphocytic perivascular infiltration with diffuse lymphocytic encephalitis. Hematoxylin and eosin stain was used. (B) Kidney from a dog spontaneously infected with There is a moderate lymphocytic interstitial infiltrate accompanying severe disruption of tubular architecture. Note the large number of organisms both free in the tubular lumens and contained in parasitophorous vacuoles in the renal tubular epithelial cells (arrows). Gram stain was used. (C) Kidney of a dog spontaneously infected with There is severe lymphocytic interstitial nephritis with collapse and loss of renal tubules. Tubular epithelial cells are disrupted and heavily infected with organisms (arrow). Hematoxylin and eosin stain was used.

Citation: Snowden K, Shadduck J. 1999. Microsporidia in Higher Vertebrates, p 393-417. In Wittner M, Weiss L (ed), The Microsporidia and Microsporidiosis. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818227.ch12
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Tables

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TABLE 1

Spontaneous microsporidioses in rodents

Parasite genus and species assigned by morphological criteria only. The possibility that some of these infections were caused by or cannot be excluded.

Citation: Snowden K, Shadduck J. 1999. Microsporidia in Higher Vertebrates, p 393-417. In Wittner M, Weiss L (ed), The Microsporidia and Microsporidiosis. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818227.ch12
Generic image for table
TABLE 2

Spontaneous microsporidioses in amphibians and reptiles

Citation: Snowden K, Shadduck J. 1999. Microsporidia in Higher Vertebrates, p 393-417. In Wittner M, Weiss L (ed), The Microsporidia and Microsporidiosis. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818227.ch12

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