2008 Volume 70 Issue 4 Pages 389-392
Five rabbits suffering from diarrhea were diagnosed with proliferative enteropathy (PE). Histopathology revealed a thickened mucosa consisting of hyperplastic intestinal epithelium and infiltration of inflammatory cells mainly consisted of macrophages. In the affected epithelial cytoplasm, numerous curved bacillus-like organisms were observed in the Warthin-Starry silver stain and electron microscopy observation. In polymerase chain reactions, Lawsonia intracellularis-specific DNA fragment were amplified from affected ileal tissue extracted DNA in each case and present 5 cases were confirmed to be L. intracellularis infection. Serum collected from the affected rabbit was immunohistochemically reactive with L. intracellularis in tissue sections from pigs with porcine proliferative enteropathy, as well as with tissue sections from the five affected rabbits. Thus, serum obtained from the affected rabbit may be applicable to immunohistochemical detection for L. intracellularis infection in other species.