The authors observed in the past five years In a Suffolk-breed stock of an average number of 210 a disease of slow course, leading to death within 3-8 weeks and causing a death rate of 6.5-10.8% among the 2-13 year-old ewes and stud rams. The disease was characterised by pruritus of the head, trunk and limbs, loss of fleece in patches, severe emaciation, incoordinated shaking movement (weakness of the hind part of the body) and progressive weakening (Figure 1 and 2). The affected sheep were either serologically positive or negative to maedi/visna virus. The treatment of the diseased animals for some days with potentiated sulphonamide (sulphametoxasole and trimetoprim) injection in a dose of 3 ml/10 body weight kg or with toltrazuril in a dose of 15 mg/body weight kg was ineffective. In the 6 carcasses examined in the laboratory severe sarcocystis infection of the skeletal muscle and the myocardium was diagnosed (Figure 3). The schizonts (meronts) of the sarcocysts were observed in the bundles of His, the Purkinje fibres conducting the impulse in the heart (Figure 4). In the different parts of the cerebrum mild focal non-purulent inflammation - lympho-histiocytic Infiltrations of the vessel walls and focal glia cell proliferation and in the meninx circumscribed mononuclear infiltration -, and in the cerebellum oedema and secondary destruction of the neural cells was found (Figure 5 and 6). Besides, in the spleen lymphoid hyperplasia, in the liver and kidneys proliferative focal lympho-histiocytic infiltration, in the skin focal mononuclear and eosinophil granulocytic infiltrations and ulcerative-necrotic areas were observed. The mature cysts found in the skeletal muscle contained bradyzoits in a great number (Figure 7). The ultrastructure of the merozoites showed the picture characteristic to sarcocysts (Figure 8). The structure of the mature cysts with thin wall reminded of Sarcocystis arieticanis. Previously there was no data on the occurrence of this sarcocystis species in Hungary. The authors wish to clear up with further examinations the possible intercurrent infection by S. tenella of the sheep stock. By reason of the clinical signs and the slow course the above-mentioned sarcocystiosis is remarkable because of differentiating from scraple and visna.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Magyar Allatorvosok Lapja|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1 2000|
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