[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hepatitis, proliferative typhlitis, and colitis were characterized in young adult and older SCID/NCr mice naturally infected with Helicobacter hepaticus. Liver lesions consisted of Kupffer, Ito, and oval cell hyperplasia along with multifocal to coalescing coagulative hepatocyte necrosis. Numerous Warthin-Starry-positive bacteria were observed in the parenchyma, and there were minimal to mild accumulations of monocytic cells and neutrophils. Proliferative typhlitis was characterized by moderate to marked mucosal epithelial cell hyperplasia with mild monocytic and neutrophilic infiltration. Minimal to mild colitis with mucosal epithelial cell hyperplasia of the colon was most marked in older mice. Comparable gastrointestinal lesions were not observed in uninfected control SCID/NCr mice. H. hepaticus was cultured from fetal viscera of 2 of 11 pups sampled late in gestation from infected SCID/NCr females, suggesting transplacental infection of H. hepaticus. As expected, most of the naturally infected SCID/NCr mice had no serum immunoglobulin G response against H. hepaticus. These findings contrast with those in infected immunocompetent A/JCr mice, which develop a significant immune response to H. hepaticus associated with prominent multifocal mononuclear cell infiltrates in the liver, with only rare bacteria observable at the periphery of inflammatory foci or in the biliary canaliculi. The results demonstrate that chronic inflammatory and proliferative lesions simultaneously affecting the liver, cecum, and colon are associated with natural infection of SCID/NCr mice with H. hepaticus and that lesions are progressive with age. Concurrent infection with H. hepaticus may confound studies that have been attributed to similar lesions due to other experimental manipulations of SCID/NCr mice.
Full-text · Article · Dec 1998 · Infection and Immunity
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Gastrointestinal motility disorders are of considerable clinical importance in humans and animals. Abnormalities of smooth muscle and the enteric nervous system have been described. We have identified and characterized a new mutant stock of rats that develops severe megacecum and colon with pseudo-obstruction, Familial Megacecum and Colon (FMC). The inheritance pattern of FMC was characterized by selective breeding. Gastrointestinal motility was evaluated radiographically. Complete pathologic evaluations, including ultrastructural examination and staining of colonic segments for acetylcholinesterase, peripherin, vasoactive intestinal peptide, substance P, nitric oxide synthase, and somatostatin, were performed. Spontaneous contractility and contractile force in isolated colonic muscle strips were examined. Familial megacecum and colon is inherited as an autosomal recessive trait. The markedly dilated cecum and proximal portion of the colon are followed by a short, funnel-shaped segment and distal portion of the colon with normal or slightly reduced lumen. Although clinical features and gross anatomic changes of the colon resemble those of Hirschsprung's disease in humans and animals, aganglionosis is not a feature of FMC. An increase in somatostatin staining was observed in dilated regions of bowel. The spontaneous contractile frequency and contractile force were diminished in the affected colon. Familial megacecum and colon is a new mutant, distinct from previously described hereditary and targeted mutant rodent models that develop megacecum and colon as a result of distal colonic dysfunction. The functional or morphologic defect(s) that result in colonic dysfunction in rats with FMC was not determined. The disease may result from an absence or overexpression of a single or group of neurotransmitters or their respective neurons, receptor abnormalities, or defects in the intestinal pacemaker system.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Helicobacter mustelae, like Helicobacter pylori, possesses two flagellin proteins, FlaA and FlaB. Isogenic mutant strains of H. mustelae have been constructed by disruption of the flaA or flaB gene with a kanamycin resistance cassette or by introduction of both a kanamycin and a chloramphenicol resistance gene to produce a double mutant. To determine whether one or both flagellin proteins are necessary for colonization and persistence of infection with H. mustelae, 19 ferrets, specific pathogen free for H. mustelae, were given either the HMF1 flaA::km (weakly motile), ATCC 43772 flaB::km (moderately motile), or HMF1 flaA::cat flaB::km (non-motile) mutant strain, the wild-type parent strains, or sterile broth. Gastric tissue samples were obtained during sequential gastric biopsies beginning at 3 weeks postinoculation and ending at necropsy at 3 months postinoculation. H. mustelae infection status was determined by culture, histology, and serology. The wild-type parent strains of H. mustelae infected all ferrets at all time points. The double-mutant strain was unable to colonize; the flaA and flaB single-mutant strains were able to initially colonize at a low level and establish persistent infection with increasing numbers of organisms over time. The severity of gastritis produced by infection with these strains of H. mustelae correlated with the number of organisms present in the gastric mucosa. Flagellar motility is an important virulence factor for colonization and pathogenesis in the H. mustelae ferret model.
Full-text · Article · Jun 1997 · Infection and Immunity
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study was motivated by the sporadic observation of epiphora in two male rabbits. The epiphora was unilateral and not associated with conjunctivitis or Pasteurella infection. To characterize the cause of epiphora, we studied 15 specific-pathogen-free New Zealand White rabbits. This study group was composed of the two affected males, four unaffected males, and nine unaffected females. Clinical evaluation consisted of bacterial culture of conjunctival specimens, examination of conjunctival scrapings for chlamydial inclusions, culture and cytologic examination of specimens from the nasolacrimal duct, plain and contrast radiography, latex casting, histologic examination, and the Schirmer tear test. Important differences found in the rabbits with epiphora included an opalescent, gritty, nasolacrimal duct flush fluid and marked unilateral dilatation of the duct proximal to a dorsal flexure at the caudal limit of the incisor tooth root. The flush solution from one affected rabbit cleared with ether, suggesting the presence of triglycerides or cholesterol. The organisms most commonly isolated from the conjunctiva were Moraxella sp., Oligella urethralis, Staphylococcus aureus, coagulase-negative Staphylococcus sp., and Streptococcus viridans. The organisms most commonly isolated from the nasolacrimal duct flush fluid were Moraxella sp., S. viridans, and Neisseria sp. Culture of the nasolacrimal duct flush fluid yielded microorganisms more consistently than did culture of the conjunctival specimens. All microorganisms isolated from affected rabbits also were isolated from unaffected rabbits. There was no apparent contribution of microorganisms to the development of epiphora, and Schirmer tear test results for affected animals were within the range seen in unaffected animals. Occlusion of the nasolacrimal duct was presumed to be attributable to fat droplets. This study augments the existing literature and represents the first report of anomalous nasolacrimal duct anatomic features in the rabbit.
No preview · Article · Jan 1997 · Laboratory animal science
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Serous biliary cystadenomas were observed in two male ferrets (Mustela putorius furo). Grossly, the neoplasms, one 8 × 7 × 7 cm and the other 8 × 5 × 4 cm, consisted of interconnecting spherical or oval cysts defined by irregular fibrous capsules, with effacement of the hepatic parenchyma. Most cysts contained thin, clear or straw-colored fluid, and some had opalescent thick contents in both ferrets. Histologically, the cysts were lined by a single row of cuboidal to columnar epithelial cells and contained clear to eosinophilic secretion, with thin fibrous stroma. In one ferret, small papillary growth and intraluminal infoldings of the epithelium were observed in a few cysts.
No preview · Article · Dec 1996 · Contemporary topics in laboratory animal science / American Association for Laboratory Animal Science
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A retrospective study revealed intestinal plasmacytosis in 53 of 102 rabbits used in various experimental studies and as controls. The breeds affected included New Zealand white (n = 46), Dutch-belted (n = 6), and Watanabe (n = 1) rabbits. Sex predisposition was not found in any breed. The mean (+/-SD) ages were 3.1 +/- 1.4 years for New Zealand white rabbits, 1.3 +/- 1.1 for Dutch-belted rabbits, and 2 years for the Watanabe rabbit. The severity increased with animal age. The incidence was higher (P < 0.05) in rabbits used in antibody production and cholesterol studies. The lesions were characterized by multifocal to diffuse infiltration of well-differentiated plasma cells in the intestinal mucosa. Electron microscopic examination revealed typical plasma cell morphology of the infiltrating cells. Small intestine and cecum were the major sites affected. In severe cases, colon, rectum, trachea, esophagus, mesenteric lymph node, and spleen were also involved.
Full-text · Article · Nov 1996 · Veterinary Pathology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Helicobacter hepaticus has been associated with naturally occurring hepatitis in certain inbred strains of mice, and in A/JCr mice it has been linked to the development of hepatic adenomas and adenocarcinomas. H. hepaticus was orally inoculated into 30 axenic, outbred female mice, and the mice were studied longitudinally to fulfill Koch's postulates and to ascertain the pathogenic potential of the organism under defined germfree conditions. Ten cage contact mice were also housed in the same germfree isolator to study transmission patterns, and 10 germfree mice were maintained in separate isolators as controls. Mice serially euthanized from 3 weeks through 24 months postinoculation (p.i.) were surveyed by culture and PCR for H. hepaticus in liver and intestinal tissues. Tissues were analyzed for histopathological changes, and sera were assayed for the presence of immunoglobulin G antibody to H. hepaticus and changes in the liver enzyme alanine aminotransferase. Inoculated mice and cage contact mice were persistently infected with H. hepaticus as identified by culture and PCR, in both the intestine and, less frequently, the liver, for the duration of the 2-year study. Animals developed persistent chronic hepatitis, and in some animals enterocolitis was noted. Hepatocellular carcinoma was diagnosed in one H. hepaticus-infected mouse. The level of H. hepaticus serum antibody was highest in experimentally infected mice at 12 to 18 months p.i.; this corresponded in general to the time interval when the highest levels of alanine aminotransferase were recorded. Although cage contact mice became persistently infected with H. hepaticus, lesions were less severe and the levels of serological biomarkers utilized in the study were lower. The H. hepaticus-infected mouse will provide an ideal model to study putative bacterial virulence determinants and how they interact with the host to induce chronic inflammation and tumorigenesis.
Full-text · Article · Oct 1996 · Infection and Immunity
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Three cases of juvenile mediastinal lymphoma developed in a laboratory colony of ferrets. Two ferrets became acutely moribund, and one was found dead with no preceding signs of illness. Splenomegaly, hepatomegaly, and a large thoracic mass were the primary features in each case. All three ferrets had multiorgan metastasis of the tumor. Two ferrets were tested for feline leukemia virus and Aleutian disease virus with negative results.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Helicobacter hepaticus causes hepatitis in selected strains of mice and in A/JCr mice is linked to liver cancer. To analyze whether H. hepaticus persists in specified ecological niches, to determine whether biomarkers of infection exist, and to analyze the influence of H. hepaticus on hepatocyte proliferation, a longitudinal study of H. hepaticus-infected A/JCr mice was undertaken. A/JCr mice were serially euthanatized from 3 through 18 months and surveyed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; bacterial culture of liver, colon, and cecum; histology; electron microscopy; hepatocyte proliferation indices determined by using 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine; and measurement of the liver enzyme alanine aminotransferase. In infected animals throughout the 18-month study, H. hepaticus was consistently isolated from the lower bowel but only sporadically from the liver. By electron microscopy, H. hepaticus was noted infrequently and only in bile canaliculi. Infected mice, particularly males, showed chronic inflammation; oval cell, Kupffer cell, and Ito cell hyperplasia; hepatocytomegaly; and bile duct proliferation. The inflammatory and necrotizing lesion was progressive and involved the hepatic parenchyma, portal triads, and intralobular venules. Hepatic adenomas were noted only in male mice, whereas 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine proliferation indices were markedly increased in both sexes, but especially in males, compared to control A/J mice. Infected mice also developed sustained anti-H. hepaticus serum immunoglobulin G antibody responses and elevated alanine aminotransferase levels. H. hepaticus, which persists in the lower bowels and livers of A/JCr mice, is associated with a chronic proliferative hepatitis, and hepatomas in selected male mice indicate that this novel bacterium may cause an increased risk of hepatic cancer induction in susceptible strains of mice. This murine model should prove useful in dissecting the molecular events operable in the development of neoplasms induced by bacteria belonging to this expanding genera of pathogenic Helicobacter species.
Full-text · Article · Jun 1996 · Infection and Immunity
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To examine clinical and pathologic findings in 60 ferrets with lymphoma.
Retrospective case series.
60 ferrets in which the diagnosis of lymphoma had been confirmed by means of histologic examination of biopsy or necropsy specimens.
Information including age, sex, coat color, history, clinical signs, clinicopathologic abnormalities, treatment, outcome, and results of histologic examination of biopsy and necropsy specimens were retrieved from medical records of ferrets with spontaneous lymphoma examined between 1982 and 1994 at the Massachusetts institute of Technology or private veterinary practices in 10 states. Classification of lymphoma was assigned according to the National Cancer Institute's working formulation for non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. Chi 2 Trend analysis was used to determine whether age was associated with history, clinical signs, hematologic abnormalities, stage, histologic grade, or outcome.
Acute onset, mediastinal mass, lymphocytosis, and multicentric distribution were linked with younger ferrets, and lymphopenia and survival longer than 2 months after diagnosis was associated with older ferrets. Twenty percent of ferrets in this study had cohabitated with another ferret with lymphoma. Chemotherapeutic efficacy was not evaluated.
Clinical and pathologic features linked with age should be considered when evaluating diagnostic and therapeutic options for ferrets with lymphoma.
No preview · Article · May 1996 · Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Single or multiple semispherical to bilobulated fluid-filled cystic structures of variable size were observed on the dorsal aspects of the urinary bladder of four male and two female ferrets (Mustela putorius furo). All ferrets had been neutered. On physical examination, the cysts were palpated as caudal abdominal masses. Three of the six ferrets presented with dysuria, and two ferrets had signs compatible with endocrine dysfunction. Adrenal cortical hyperplasia or neoplasia were observed in all of the five ferrets examined. Sex hormones assayed in one of the six ferrets revealed elevated levels of serum estrodiol. The posterior aspect of the cysts was located on and/or attached to the trigone or neck of the bladder, with variable intraluminal communication with the bladder and/or the urethra. The anterior aspect of the cysts projected dorsally or dorsocranially into the caudal abdomen. The cysts were thin walled and contained urinelike fluid (n = 5) or viscous yellow fluid (n = 1). Histologically, the cyst walls were composed of three layers, epithelium, muscle, and serosa, with fibrovascular stroma between layers. The epithelium consisted of simple to stratified transitional, columnar, or squamous epithelial cells. The muscular layer consisted of intermittent bundles and/or single to double layers of continuous to discontinuous smooth muscle. The serosal layer consisted of loose fibrous stroma covered by flattened mesothelial cells. The cystic anomalies in these ferrets were most likely derived from the urogenital glands/ducts or other remnants.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: SJL mice spontaneously develop B cell lymphomas (historically described as reticulum cell sarcomas) by 12 months of age and inflammatory muscle disease (myositis) by 6 months of age. Tumors originate in mesenteric lymph nodes and in Peyer's patches and resemble human germinal center lymphomas. The growth of reticulum cell sarcomas is completely dependent on cytokine production by normal T cells. The spontaneous myositis, which resembles human idiopathic myositis, is characterized by various abnormalities in skeletal muscle, including infiltration with inflammatory cells consisting primarily of macrophages. The participation of different cytokines in the pathogenesis of the lymphoma and the massive invasion of macrophages into muscle tissues led us to investigate the possible involvement of nitric oxide (NO.), which is known to be synthesized by activated macrophages under inflammatory conditions. Elevated NO. production, measured by urinary nitrate excretion, by SJL mice in comparison with BALB/c control mice was observed as early as 7 weeks of age. Both aging and degree of spontaneous myositis correlated with increased nitric oxide production. Oral administration of N-monomethyl-L-arginine, an inhibitor of nitric oxide synthase (NOS), reduced urinary nitrate excretion and also the severity of myositis. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed the presence of inducible NOS (iNOS) in cells in the spleen, lymph nodes, and skeletal muscle. The iNOS is primarily responsible for the enhanced nitric oxide production. Morphology of cells that stained positive for iNOS was similar to that of macrophages infiltrating into the affected tissues. Chronic production of elevated amounts of nitric oxide by the SJL mice, therefore, provides a useful in vivo model for future studies of cellular damage resulting from endogenously produced NO.in combination with oxygen radicals.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Helicobacter pylori has been cultured from the inflamed gastric mucosae of naturally infected cats; the lesions in H. pylori-infected cat stomachs mimic many of the features seen in H. pylori-infected human stomachs. To determine whether H. pylori-negative specific-pathogen-free cats with normal gastric mucosae were susceptible to colonization by this bacterium and whether gastritis developed after infections, four H. pylori-negative cats treated with cimetidine were orally dosed three times with 3 ml (1.5 x 10(8) CFU/ml) of H. pylori every 4 days. All four cats became persistently colonized as determined by gastric cultures and PCRs from serial gastric biopsy samples and necropsy samples at 7 months postinfection. H. pylori was not isolated from the two control cats, nor were their gastric tissues positive by PCR; one of the two cats had a few focal lymphocytic aggregates in the body submucosa, whereas the second cat had a normal gastric mucosa. All four H. pylori-infected cats had multifocal gastritis consisting of lymphoid aggregates plus multiple large lymphoid nodules, which were most noticeable in the antral mucosa. In addition, one H. pylori-infected cat had a moderate diffuse infiltration of polymorphonuclear leukocytes in the subglandular region of the antrum. H. pylori-like organisms were focally distributed in glandular crypts of the antrum. Two of the H. pylori-infected cats had significant (eightfold) increases over baseline in levels of immunoglobulin G H. pylori serum antibody. The H. pylori isolates from the four experimentally infected cats had restriction fragment length polymorphism patterns specific for the flaA gene that were identical to those of the inoculating strain. H. pylori readily colonizes the cat stomach and produces persistent gastritis.
Full-text · Article · Aug 1995 · Infection and Immunity