The capacity of slightly acidic hypochlorous acid water (SAHW), in both liquid and spray form, to inactivate bacteria was evaluated as a potential candidate for biosecurity enhancement in poultry production. SAHW (containing 50 or 100 ppm chlorine, pH 6) was able to inactivate Escherichia coli and Salmonella Infantis in liquid to below detectable levels (≤2.6 log10 CFU/ml) within 5 sec of exposure. In addition, SAHW antibacterial capacity was evaluated by spraying it using a nebulizer into a box containing these bacteria, which were present on the surfaces of glass plates and rayon sheets. SAHW was able to inactivate both bacterial species on the glass plates (dry condition) and rayon sheets within 5 min spraying and 5 min contact times, with the exception of 50 ppm SAHW on the rayon sheets. Furthermore, a corrosivity test determined that SAHW does not corrode metallic objects, even at the longest exposure times (83 days). Our findings demonstrate that SAHW is a good candidate for biosecurity enhancement in the poultry industry. Spraying it on the surfaces of objects, eggshells, egg incubators and transport cages could reduce the chances of contamination and disease transmission. These results augment previous findings demonstrating the competence of SAHW as an anti-viral disinfectant.
American foulbrood is the most destructive honeybee bacterial disease. The etiological agent, Paenibacillus larvae, has been classified into four genotypes by a repetitive-element PCR (ERIC I-IV) and 21 sequence types by multilocus sequence typing (ST1-21). In this study, we genotyped Japanese P. larvae isolates for the first time and revealed the presence of three genotypes (ERIC I-ST2, ERIC I-ST15 and ERIC II-ST10) in the western region of Aichi prefecture. ERIC I-ST15 and ERIC II-ST10 are globally distributed types, whereas the ERIC I-ST2 isolate was the first isolate of this genotype identified outside the native range of the European honeybee. The ERIC I and II isolates differed in phenotypes including cell morphology, and these may be useful for predicting ERIC types.
Pimobendan (PIMO) can cause adverse effects, such as mitral valve degeneration, in dogs; however, it is unclear whether these effects occur in cats. Therefore, we aimed to determine whether PIMO or benazepril produces adverse cardiac effects in healthy cats. This was a blinded, randomized, prospective parallel study. Twelve cats were randomly divided into two groups of six cats, namely, an angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitor group that received benazepril and a PIMO group. Cats were administered their respective treatments for 506 days, and we evaluated cardiac parameters, blood biochemistry and glomerular filtration rates during that time. At the end of the trial, the cats were euthanized, and histopathological examinations were performed by a pathologist who was blinded to the treatment groups. No significant changes were observed in any of the parameters measured in either of the groups. In particular, no significant cardiac lesions were observed in either of the groups. In healthy cats, neither PIMO nor benazepril appears to cause cardiac lesions, but future studies are needed to examine the effects of PIMO in cats with heart disease.
We investigated the basic characteristics of indirect arterial blood pressure (ABP) measurement using a device that combines oscillometry and photoplethysmography in cats. Dobutamine was infused intravenously in four anesthetized cats. Direct ABP was measured by a catheter. Indirect ABP was measured from the left forelimb. Dobutamine significantly elevated both systolic arterial pressure (SAP) and mean arterial pressure (MAP) in a dose-dependent manner. The indirect SAP, MAP and diastolic arterial pressure (DAP) values were closely correlated with the direct ABP values (r=0.88, 0.89 and 0.83, respectively). The mean bias for SAP, MAP and DAP was 3.4, 0.2 and −2.4 mmHg, respectively. The indirect ABP measured by this device may be used to reliably monitor ABP changes in anesthetized cats.
A 12-month-old microminipig, weighing 12.6 kg, showed 3 repeated episodes of transient ST-segment elevation in 24 hr Holter electrocardiogram after placing an ameroid constrictor around the left anterior descending coronary artery. Ventricular fibrillation was noticed just after the cessation of the 24 hr Holter-electrocardiogram recording. Direct current defibrillations and cardiopulmonary resuscitation were performed; however, they were unsuccessful, leading to the animal’s death. Its heart was excised for macroscopic analysis, which indicated that lumen of the ameroid constrictor was not narrowed and that there was no dissection, embolus or thrombus in the coronary arteries, indirectly suggesting that coronary artery vasospasm may have caused the ischemic attacks. Thus, microminipig may possess some potential to have coronary vasospasm.
The definitive hosts of Sarcocystis sinensis in water buffaloes have hitherto been unknown, but the close similarity of this species to the cat-transmitted Sarcocystis bovifelis in cattle suggested they were felids. In a previous study, two domestic cats were fed macroscopic sarcocysts of Sarcocystis fusiformis contained within or dissected from the esophageal muscles of water buffaloes, while no microscopic sarcocysts of S. sinensis were noticed. Both cats started shedding small numbers of sporocysts 8–10 days post infection (dpi) and were euthanized 15 dpi. Using a PCR-based molecular assay targeting the mitochondrial cox1 gene of S. fusiformis, both cats were shown to act as definitive hosts for this species. In the present study, DNA samples derived from oocysts/sporocysts in the intestinal mucosa of both cats were further examined by PCR for the presence of S. sinensis using 2 newly designed primers selectively targeting the cox1 gene of this species. All 6 DNA samples examined from each cat tested positive for S. sinensis. A 1,038-bp-long portion of cox1 was amplified and sequenced as 2 overlapping fragments from 5 of these DNA samples. The 5 sequences shared 99.3–100% identity with 7 previous cox1 sequences of S. sinensis obtained from sarcocysts in water buffaloes. Additionally, amplification of the ITS1 region with primers targeting various Sarcocystis spp., yielded amplicons of 2 different lengths, corresponding to those obtained from sarcocyst isolates of S. sinensis and S. fusiformis, respectively. This is the first study to show that cats act as definitive hosts for S. sinensis.
Canine transmissible venereal tumor (CTVT) is the only naturally contagious tumor that is transmitted during coitus or social behaviors. Based on the tumor’s location, the diagnosis of genital TVT (GTVT) is comparably easier than those in the extragenital area (ETVT) that are more easily incorrectly diagnosed. Fortunately, CTVT cells contain a specific long interspersed nuclear elements (LINE), inserted upstream of the myc gene, allowing a diagnostic polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based detection assay. The objectives of this study were aimed to improve the diagnostic accuracy by applying the diagnostic LINE1-c-myc PCR assay and fine needle aspiration (FNA) collection in direct comparison with standard cytological and histopathological analyses. Seventy-four dogs, comprised of 41 and 31 dogs with tumor masses at their external genitalia and extragenital areas (e.g. skin and nasal cavity), respectively, were included in this study. The signalment of these 65 dogs and clinical history of 20 client-owned dogs were collected. Samples were taken by biopsy for both histopathological examination and FNA for cytological examination and diagnostic PCR. The PCR products from 10 apparently CTVT samples were purified and sequenced. Sixty-one CTVT cases were diagnosed by cytological and histological analyses, but 65 were positive by the PCR assay. Overall, the PCR assay improved the accuracy of diagnostic CTVT results, especially for the more difficult ETVT tumors. Moreover, this PCR-based approach can facilitate the decision as to discontinue chemotherapy by discrimination between residual tumor cell masses and fibrotic tissue.
A 10-day-old, Japanese Black, female calf had shown astasia since just after birth. Focal symmetrical periventricular malacic lesions of the cerebrum and suppurative arthritis of the left hip joint were observed in macroscopic examination. Histologically, the cerebral lesions were confirmed as periventricular leukomalacia (PVL). The location and histological features of the lesions were similar to PVL in humans, caused by neonatal ischemia/hypovolemia. This is the first report of PVL in a neonatal calf.
H-type bovine spongiform encephalopathy (H-BSE) is an atypical form of BSE in aged cattle. H-BSE is characterized by the presence of two proteinase K-resistant forms of disease-associated prion protein (PrPSc), identified as PrPSc #1 and PrPSc #2, in the brain. To investigate the coexistence of different PrPSc forms in the extracerebral tissues of cattle experimentally infected with H-BSE, immunohistochemical and molecular analyses were performed by using N-terminal-, core-region- and C-terminal-specific anti-prion protein antibodies. Our results demonstrated that two distinct forms of PrPSc coexisted in the various extracerebral tissues.
ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels are well characterized in cardiac, pancreatic and many other muscle cells. In the present study, functional expression of the KATP channel was examined in non-pregnant murine longitudinal myometrium. Isometric contraction measurements and Western blot were used. KATP channel openers (KCOs), such as pinacidil, cromakalim, diazoxide and nicorandil, inhibited spontaneous myometrial contractions in a reversible and glibenclamide-sensitive manner. KCOs inhibited oxytocin (OXT)- and prostaglandin F2α (PGF2α)-induced phasic contractions in a glibenclamide-sensitive manner. SUR2B and Kir6.2 were detected by Western blot, whereas SUR1, SUR2A and Kir6.1 were not. These results show that pinacidl, cromakalim, diazoxide and nicorandil-sensitive KATP channels exist in murine myometrium, which are composed of SUR2B and Kir6.2. Based on the modulatory effects of the KATP channel on spontaneous contraction, OXT- and PGF2α-induced contractions, KATP channels seem to play an essential role in murine myometrial motility via activation of SUR2B and Kir6.2.
Analysis of the association between antibodies against bovine leukemia virus (BLV), BLV proviral load, and white blood cell (WBC) and lymphocyte counts was performed with 774 dairy cows. The average age, WBC counts and lymphoid cell counts tended to be higher in BLV antibody-positive cows than in antibody-negative cows. There was a similar trend in levels of proviral DNA. We analyzed age, WBC counts and lymphocyte counts by principal component analyses to create a distribution chart of the principle component scores. Using the chart, we categorized cows into four quadrants based on additional information, such as the presence of antibody and the levels of proviral DNA. Antibody-positive cows and cows with high BLV proviral load were found mostly in one quadrant of the chart, indicating that it is possible to predict the risk of infection without any knowledge on antibody status by using information, such as WBC counts as a biomarker. When only antibody-positive cows were included in the analysis, a characteristic distribution of different levels of proviral DNA was seen in the quadrants, suggesting that it is possible to estimate the extent of bovine leukosis infection by using this analysis. For this analysis and categorization of the cows into quadrants, we computed a mathematical formulation using discriminant analysis based on age and WBC and lymphocyte counts. This mathematical formulation for the hematological preliminary diagnosis of the disease is recommended as a screening tool to monitor bovine leukosis.
We surveyed prevalence and contamination levels of Listeria monocytogenes in ready-to-eat foods between 2000 and 2012 in Tokyo. L. monocytogenes was isolated from 52 (1.7%) out of 2,980 samples. Comparing the prevalence in the study period, 2.2% were positive in the former period (2000–2005) and 1.2% in the latter (2006–2012). Using the most probable number (MPN) technique, 32 samples were contaminated with fewer than 0.3 L. monocytogenes/g, 10 samples with 0.3–1.0/g and 4 samples with more than 1.0/g (the maximum was 2.3/g). The most common serovar was 1/2a, followed by 1/2b, 4b and 1/2c. We revealed that ready-to-eat foods in Tokyo were contaminated with L. monocytogenes, although the contamination levels were low.
Nasal lymphoma is the most common nasal tumor in cats and is generally a solitary and radiosensitive tumor. We retrospectively evaluated the response to radiation and survival time in relation to apoptosis and Ki-67 indices in feline nasal lymphomas treated with radiation therapy. The apoptotic and Ki-67 indices were evaluated with TUNEL and immunohistochemical staining in 30 biopsy tissues that were taken before any treatment. These two indices were compared, and differences between different treatment response groups were analyzed. The correlation between the median survival times (MST) and the indices was estimated using the Kaplan Meier method, and statistical differences between survival curves were analyzed using a log-rank method. With regard to apoptotic index, a statistical difference was observed between the samples taken from cats with complete response and stable disease (1.22% vs. 0.45%; P=0.045). The Ki-67 index in cats with both complete response and partial response was significantly higher than in cats with stable disease (44.4% and 39.6% vs. 16.3%; P<0.001 and P=0.008, respectively). The cats with a high level of apoptosis (>0.9%) nasal lymphoma were not significantly prolonged MSTs (P=0.202), however, high Ki-67-positive (>40%) cats experienced a statistically significant relationship with longer survival time (P=0.015). Our results indicate that spontaneous apoptotic and Ki-67 indices are strong predictors for response to radiation therapy in feline nasal lymphomas.
To investigate inhibitory effect for oral bacterial proliferation, we divided 12 dogs into 3 groups; scaling alone (C; control group), brushing (B) and application of toothpaste (P). Before scaling (Pre) and at 0 to 8 weeks after scaling (0–8 w), we collected oral bacteria from the dental surface every week and counted them using a bacterial counter. The results demonstrated a significant reduction in the number of oral bacteria for group B relative to Pre and group C, as well as for group P relative to group C at 5–7 w. Consequently, brushing may inhibit an increase in the number of oral bacteria, and toothpaste may be effective at a certain level, although not more than that of brushing.
The aim of this study was to assess the measurement of bone mineral density (BMD) by quantitative computed tomography (QCT), comparing the relationships of BMD between QCT and dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) and between QCT and radiographic absorptiometry (RA) in the metacarpal bone of Holstein dairy cows (n=27). A significant positive correlation was found between QCT and DXA measurements (r=0.70, P<0.01), and a significant correlation was found between QCT and RA measurements (r=0.50, P<0.01). We conclude that QCT provides quantitative evaluation of BMD in dairy cows, because BMD measured by QCT showed positive correlations with BMD measured by the two conventional methods: DXA and RA.
Canine embryos (8-cell to blastocyst stages) frozen-thawed using the slow-freezing method with glycerol (four recipients) or dimethyl sulfoxide (three recipients) as a cryoprotectant and vitrified-warmed using the Cryotop method (five recipients) were surgically transferred into the unilateral uterine horn of recipient bitches. As a result, the morphology of embryos frozen-thawed using the slow-freezing method was judged to be normal, but no conception occurred in any of the recipient bitches. Two of the five bitches that received transferred embryos (morula to early blastocyst stages) vitrified-warmed using the Cryotop method became pregnant and produced normal pups (1/9 embryos, 11.1% and 1/6 embryos, 17.0%). It was concluded that the Cryotop method was more appropriate for canine embryo cryopreservation than the slow-freezing method, which is used for the cryopreservation of embryos of other mammalian species.
Rabies is a zoonotic disease caused by the Lyssavirus rabies virus (RABV) that can infect most mammals, including humans, where it has a case-fatality rate of almost 100%. Although preventable by vaccination, rabies causes c. 59,000 human fatalities every year worldwide. Thus, there exists an urgent need to establish an effective therapy and/or improve dissemination of vaccines for humans and animals. These outcomes require greater understanding of the mechanisms of RABV pathogenesis to identify new molecular targets for the development of therapeutics and/or live vaccines with high levels of safety. Importantly, a number of studies in recent years have indicated that RABV specifically suppresses host immunity through diverse mechanisms and that this is a key process in pathogenicity. Here, we review current understanding of immune modulation by RABV, with an emphasis on its significance to pathogenicity and the potential exploitation of this knowledge to develop new vaccines and antivirals.
The bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) technology has been a mainstay approach for generating recombinant viruses, and several methods for excision of the mini-F sequences from the viral BAC vectors have been developed. However, these strategies either require complicated procedures or leave scars of inserted sequences. To overcome these problems, a new method to excise the mini-F sequences from viral BAC vectors based on the Removal of Inserted BAC after linearizatiON (RIBON) strategy was developed in this study for herpesvirus of turkeys (HVT). Enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) DNA and the mini-F sequences were inserted into the gene encoding HVT thymidine kinase (TK) by homologous recombination in chicken embryo fibroblasts (CEFs), and the constructed HVT-BAC vector was used to transform Escherichia coli (pHVT-BAC). To remove the inserted eGFP and mini-F sequences, pHVT-BAC was linearized using a homing endonuclease I-SceI and used to cotransfect CEFs together with a plasmid containing the TK gene of HVT. The obtained viruses (44%) did not express eGFP, and DNA sequencing of isolated clones revealed that they were completely free of the inserted BAC sequences. Moreover, growth kinetics and plaque morphology of reconstituted viruses were comparable with those of the parental HVT. The results of this study demonstrate that the novel RIBON approach to remove mini-F sequences from the viral genome is simple and effective.
Avian influenza A, a highly pathogenic avian influenza, is a lethal infection in certain species of wild birds, including some endangered species. Raptors are susceptible to avian influenza, and spatial risk assessment of such species may be valuable for conservation planning. We used the maximum entropy approach to generate potential distribution models of three raptor species from presence-only data for the mountain hawk-eagle Nisaetus nipalensis, northern goshawk Accipiter gentilis and peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus, surveyed during the winter from 1996 to 2001. These potential distribution maps for raptors were superimposed on avian influenza A risk maps of Japan, created from data on incidence of the virus in wild birds throughout Japan from October 2010 to March 2011. The avian influenza A risk map for the mountain hawk-eagle showed that most regions of Japan had a low risk for avian influenza A. In contrast, the maps for the northern goshawk and peregrine falcon showed that their high-risk areas were distributed on the plains along the Sea of Japan and Pacific coast. We recommend enhanced surveillance for each raptor species in high-risk areas and immediate establishment of inspection systems. At the same time, ecological risk assessments that determine factors, such as the composition of prey species, and differential sensitivity of avian influenza A virus between bird species should provide multifaceted insights into the total risk assessment of endangered species.
We developed an interferon-γ release assay (IGRA) specific for Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Whole blood collected from forty captive Asian elephants was stimulated with three different mitogens i.e., phytohemagglutinin (PHA), pokweed mitogen (PWM) and phorbol myristate aceteate/ionomycin (PMA/I). A sandwich ELISA that was able to recognize the recombinant elephant interferon-γ (rEIFN-γ) as well as native interferon-γ from the Asian elephants was performed using anti-elephant IFN-γ rabbit polyclonal antibodies as capture antibodies and biotinylated anti-elephant IFN-γ rabbit polyclonal antibodies as detection antibodies. PMA/I was the best mitogen to use as a positive control for an Asian elephant IGRA. The development of an Asian elephant-specific IGRA that detects native IFN-γ in elephant whole blood provides promising results for its application as a potential diagnostic tool for diseases, such as tuberculosis (TB) in Asian elephants.
A 22-year-old captive male South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) developed an undifferentiated carcinoma originating in the cardiac region of the stomach. Clinical symptoms included vomiting, anorexia and weight loss. Ultrasonography and endoscopy showed gastric wall thickness. At necropsy, the gastric wall had significant thickening around the cardiac region, and metastases were found in some organs. Histologically, samples from the stomach wall and metastases showed the same tumor tissue. Immunohistochemistry was positive for epithelium markers. Ductal growth, keratinocytes or signet ring cells were absent. The tumor was classified as an undifferentiated carcinoma using the World Health Organization’s (WHO) guide to international classification of tumors in domestic animals. This is the first report of a primary gastric carcinoma in a pinniped.