Diseases / List of Miscellaneous / Metabolic / Multifactorial Diseases / Disease description:

Amyloidosis in Waterfowl with notes on Lagomorphs

INFORMATION AVAILABLE

GENERAL INFORMATION

CLINICAL CHARACTERISTICS & PATHOLOGY

INVESTIGATION & DIAGNOSIS

TREATMENT & CONTROL

SUSCEPTIBILITY & TRANSMISSION

ENVIRONMENT & GEOGRAPHY

 

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General and References

Disease Summary

Deposits of amyloid in body tissues. Commonly associated with a chronic suppurative or inflammatory condition.

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Alternative Names (Synonyms)

  • Amyloid degeneration
  • Reactive amyloidosis
  • Secondary amyloidosis

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Disease Type

 Miscellaneous / Metabolic / Multifactorial

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Infectious/Non-Infectious Agent associated with the Disease

  • Deposits of amyloid (amorphous, eosinophilic substance) in tissues, mostly extracellularly, associated with chronic infection and other chronic diseases.
  • Amyloid may be formed from any of at least 17 amyloid precursor proteins, soluble proteins present in blood. In waterfowl, the main form of amyloid is Amyloid A (AA), derived from the acute-phase reactant protein apoSAA, produced by the liver in response to persistent stimuli such as infection, inflammation and neoplasia.
  • Amyloidosis has been noted as being associated with a variety of conditions such as chronic foot lesions / Bumblefoot, enteritis, Colibacillosis, Avian Tuberculosis, Aspergillosis, Staphylococcosis, Gout, septicaemia and arthritis, as well as experimentally with repeated exposure to Salmonella typhimurium, Escherichia coli and their endotoxins (J6.9.w3, J6.21.w4, J6.23.w3, J26.5.w2, J14.29.w1, J27.43.w1).
  • Forms such as familial amyloidosis have nor been reported in waterfowl.

(B20.17.w14, B39.w1, J26.8.w1)

In lagomorphs
  • Associated with chronic illnesses. (B600.14.w14)
  • Renal amyloidosis has been seen associated with chronic pyelonephritis, renal calculi and pyometra. (B601.9.w9, J4.189.w14, J83.15.w1)
  • Amyloidosis is also seen in rabbits used experimentally for example for feeding of tsetse flies, and in rabbits injected with antigens together with Freund's adjuvant. (J83.15.w1)

Infective "Taxa"

Non-infective agents

 Amyloid A (AA), derived from the acute-phase reactant protein apoSAA.

Physical agents

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References

Disease Author

Debra Bourne
Click image for main Reference Section

Referees

Aidan Raftery MVB CertZooMed CBiol MIBiol MRCVS (V.w122)

Major References / Reviews

Code and Title List

B13.46.w1, B20.17.w14, B35.10.w4, B39.w1.
J6.9.w3, J6.21.w4
J7.S1.w4
J26.5.w1, J26.5.w2, J26.8.w1, J26.28.w1
J27.43.w1
J45.39.w1

Other References

Code and Title List

J6.23.w3
J7.30.w2, J7.33.w2, J7.34.w1, J7.S1.w4
J14.15.w1, J14.29.w1
J27.43.w1
J36.44.w1

In lagomorphs

B600.14.w14, B601.9.w9, B284.10.w10
J4.189.w14, J26.8.w1, J26.25.w3, J83.15.w1

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Clinical Characteristics and Pathology

Detailed Clinical and Pathological Characteristics

General

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WATERFOWL Frequently recognized only at post mortem examination. Clinical signs depend on the sites of amyloid deposition and resultant tissue dysfunction/destruction. Usually progressive and frequently fatal. (B20.17.w14).
LAGOMORPHS --

Clinical Characteristics

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WATERFOWL
  • Variable clinical signs, non-specific, depend on the sites of amyloid deposition and resultant tissue dysfunction/destruction. May be found dead without previous clinical signs.
  • Weight loss and muscle atrophy related to associated chronic disease conditions such as avian tuberculosis and aspergillosis may be seen.
  • Ascites may be seen with severe liver involvement, and gout with renal amyloidosis.
  • Swollen abdomen, swollen feet, general or leg weakness and dyspnoea have been reported in ducks with amyloidosis (J6.9.w3, J45.39.w1).

(B35.10.w4, B39.w1)

LAGOMORPHS

Incubation

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WATERFOWL Chronic (J26.5.w2, J27.43.w1).
LAGOMORPHS Probably chronic - associated with chronic inflammatory conditions. (B600.14.w14, B601.9.w9, J83.15.w1, J4.189.w14)

Mortality / Morbidity

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WATERFOWL Rare in wild waterfowl, but relatively commonly reported in captive and domestic waterfowl. Incidence may reach 30-40% or more in domestic Pekin ducks Anas platyrhynchos domesticus. May be a common disease in aged breeder ducks and may cause severe economic losses (J6.21.w4, B20.17.w14, B35.10.w4).
LAGOMORPHS
  • Not common. See more in rabbits used experimentally for example for feeding of tsetse flies, and in rabbits injected with antigens together with Freund's adjuvant. (J83.15.w1)
  • Uncommonly reported in Lepus europaeus - Brown hare, but quite frequent in rabbits [probably laboratory rabbits]. (J26.8.w1)
  • Common secondary to chronic infections in hares. (B284.10.w10)

Pathology

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WATERFOWL Liver, spleen and kidney (particularly renal glomeruli) are most commonly affected; intestines, thyroid, adrenals, heart, pancreas, and lungs are less commonly involved. Affected organs may be enlarged firm and rubbery, with a waxy surface which appears smooth, glossy and relatively bloodless on a cut surface.

Gross Pathology

  • May be no gross lesions if only minimal amyloid deposition has occurred.
  • General - often in 'fair-to-poor' condition, with minimal fat stores and some muscle wasting. May also be urate deposits (chalky white material) on serosal surfaces (visceral Gout), particularly associated with extensive kidney amyloidosis.
  • Liver - may be pale pink/grey, or reddish-yellow to light brown and firm, the cut surface smooth, glossy and relatively bloodless; translucent or greyish foci may be found.
  • Ascites - may be noted with severe liver involvement.
  • Spleen - may be reddish brown and have grossly visible grey-white translucent foci.Occasionally splenic rupture and haemorrhage into peritoneal cavity.
  • Kidney - may be enlarged, pale, slightly firm (J6.23.w3)
  • Gastro-intestinal - intestinal walls thickened, firm, yellow-orange to orange-red deposits.
  • N.B. may be other pathology related to associated disease conditions such as Avian Tuberculosis or Aspergillosis.

Histology

  • Specific Staining of tissues
  • H&E stain: Eosinophilic fibrils superimposed on homogenous, cell-free pale pink background. Frequently amyloid deposits may be noted in association with blood vessels or near the basement membranes of cell layers, in connective or fat tissue. Usually little or no inflammatory response.
  • Congo red stain: red fibrillar pattern; bi-refringent apple-green areas seen by polarizing microscopy.
  • Masson’s trichrome: red fibrils on pale blue homogenous background.
  • Van Gieson’s stain: fairly homogenous, yellow.
  • Thioflavin-S or thioflavin-T, fluoresces with ultraviolet light).
  • Liver - infiltration of sinusoids and blood vessels in portal triads. May be hepatocellular atrophy in advanced amyloidosis.
  • Spleen - may be seen associated with walls of small blood vessels and walls of sinusoids.
  • Kidney - may be amyloid in the glomeruli, convoluted tubules, walls of arterioles.
  • Gastro-intestinal - In lamina propria of the intestines.

(J6.21.w4, J26.28.w1, J27.43.w1, J45.39.w1, B13.46.w1, B20.17.w14,  B35.10.w4, B39.w1 ).

LAGOMORPHS
Gross
  • In two wild adult male Lepus europaeus - Brown hare: (J26.25.w3)
    • Renal: white foci in the kidneys in one animal. (J26.25.w3)
    • Hepatic: Hepatomegaly of one hare. (J26.25.w3)
    • Splenic: splenomegaly of one hare. (J26.25.w3)
    • GIT: uraemic gastroenteritis in both hares. (J26.25.w3)
    • Other: in one hare, a chronic inflammatory reaction around a foreign body in the tongue. In the other hare, various parasitic infections (in the GIT, strongylid eggs, trichurids and coccidia). (J26.25.w3)
Histopathology
  • Renal:
    • Deposits of amyloid in medullary interstitial tissue and in glomeruli. (J83.15.w1)
    • In a doe with Pasteurella multocida pyometra: in the glomeruli and to a less extent the renal interstitium, multifocal eosinophilic amorphous deposits, identified as amyloid by staining with Congo red and by apple-green birefringence under UV light. (J4.189.w14)
  • Adrenals: amyloidosis has been reported in Lepus europaeus - Brown hare. (J26.8.w1)
  • In two wild adult male Lepus europaeus - Brown hare: (J26.25.w3)
    • Renal: Amyloid in the glomeruli and renal interstitium. (J26.25.w3)
    • Other organs: 
      • Amyloid was also found in the spleen, liver, adrenals of both hares, in the tongue submucosa, large bronchi and in cardiac and skeletal muscle blood vessel walls in one hare, and in blood vessel walls of the other hare.
      • Capillaria eggs in the liver parenchyma in one hare. (J26.25.w3)

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Human Health Considerations

Amyloidosis also develops in humans (B20.17.w14).

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Susceptibility / Transmission

General information on Susceptibility / Transmission

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WATERFOWL
  • Amyloidosis has been reported in domestic and captive waterfowl more frequently than in most other bird groups, but is rarely reported in wild waterfowl.
  • The risk of development of amyloidosis has been reported as increasing with the occurrence of infectious and other diseases, particularly chronic diseases, and frequently appears to be related to chronic antigenic stimulation, such as that provide by exposure to bacteria and their endotoxins (J6.9.w3, J6.21.w4, J6.23.w3, J26.28.w1, J27.43.w1).
  • Social stress, environmental stress, and increasing age all appear to increase the risk of developing amyloidosis. Increased incidence with age may just reflect the increased cumulative risk of exposure to subclinical or overt diseases associated with the development of amyloidosis.
  • Species which are normally not gregarious, and species with specialized environmental requirements may be more stressed (social and environmental) in a 'typical' captive situation and therefore more prone to developing amyloidosis.
  • Both species and strain differences in susceptibility have been noted.

J26.5.w1, J26.5.w2, J45.39.w1, B13.46.w1, B20.17.w14, B35.10.w4, B39.w1

LAGOMORPHS

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Disease has been reported in either the wild or in captivity in:

[N.B. Miscellaneous / Traumatic Diseases tend to be under-reported and the majority are likely to affect all waterfowl species, given exposure to the related disease agents/factors.]
Waterfowl
  • White Pekin ducks Anas platyrhynchos domesticus (J6.9.w3).
  • Domestic ducks (J6.21.w4).
  • Found on post mortem examination of 4% of 'seaducks' in a collection in the UK (J7.30.w2).
  • Found on post mortem examination of 1.8% of adult and 3% of juvenile whistling ducks Dendrocygna spp. in a collection in the UK (J7.33.w2).
  • Rarely found on post mortem examination of geese (Anser spp. and Branta spp.) in a collection in the UK (J7.34.w1).
  • Trumpeter swan Cygnus buccinator in Minnesota, USA (J7.S1.w4).
  • Mute swan Cygnus olor, Canada (with chronic granulomatous proventriculitis, chronic pyelonephritis and visceral gout) (J14.15.w1).
  • Found on post mortem examination in 25.2% of adults waterfowl at the Kortright Waterfowl Park, Ontario, Canada (J14.29.w1).
  • Mute swan Cygnus olor, black swan Cygnus atratus, black-necked swan Cygnus melanocoryphus, tundra swan Cygnus columbianus, mandarin duck Aix sponsa and in the dendrocygnini, anserini, anatini, tadornini, cairini and aythyni in Japan (J27.43.w1).
  •  In individuals of the genera Chloephaga, Somateria, Bucephala, Cygnus, Branta, Netta, Anser, Coscoroba, Aix, Anas, Aythya, Dendrocygna and Tadorna, including wood duck Aix sponsa and mandarin Aix galericulata at Philadelphia Zoological Garden, USA (J26.5.w2).
  • Domestic ducks Anas platyrhynchos domesticus (J26.28.w1).
  • Wild swan (mute swan Cygnus olor or whooper swan Cygnus cygnus) in Scotland, UK (J36.44.w1.)
  • Various anseriformes, including an American merganser Mergus merganser (also birds in other genera) at the National Zoological Park, Washington D.C., USA (B39.w1).
Lagomorphs

 Host Species List

Birds

Mammals

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Disease has been specifically reported in Free-ranging populations of:

  • "Wild swan" (may be mute swan Cygnus olor or whooper swan Cygnus cygnus) in Scotland, UK (J36.44.w1).
  • Reported as a finding in 0.6% of free-flying Anatidae in British Columbia, Canada (J14.19.w1).
Lagomorphs

Host Species List

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Environment/Geography

General Information on Environmental Factors/Events and Seasonality

In waterfowl
  • Environmental stress is recognized as a factor in the development of amyloidosis.
  • Standard environmental conditions found in waterfowl collections may be stressful (environmental and social stress) for species with specialized environmental requirements, therefore making these species more prone to developing amyloidosis.

(J26.28.w1, J26.28.w2, B39.w1)

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Regions / Countries where the Infectious Agent or Disease has been recorded

In waterfowl

Japan (J27.43.w1), UK (J7.30.w2, J7.33.w2, J36.44.w1), Canada (J14.19.w1, J14.29.w1), USA (J26.5.w2, B39.w1).

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Regions / Countries where the Infectious Agent or Disease has been recorded in Free-ranging populations

In waterfowl

UK (J36.44.w1), Canada (J14.19.w1).

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General Investigation / Diagnosis

General Information on Investigation / Diagnosis

WATERFOWL
  • Suspected in old individuals with diseases with which amyloidosis may be associated (e.g. chronic infection, neoplasia) and in individuals under chronic stress.
  • Enlarged liver may be palpable, ascites may be noted on clinical examination. Enlarged liver and/or spleen may be noted on radiography or at post mortem examination.
  • Histological appearance of tissues at PME or on biopsy is suggestive.
  • Specific techniques for visualization of amyloid: Congo red stains amyloid fibrils orange-red, and bi-refringent apple-green colour is seen on polarizing microscopy. Thioflavin-S and thioflavin-T enable deposits to be visualized with ultraviolet (UV) light.

(B13.46.w1, B20.17.w14, B35.10.w4, B39.w1)

LAGOMORPHS
  • Necropsy. (J26.25.w3)
Related Techniques
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Similar Diseases (Differential Diagnosis)

WATERFOWL
  • Hyalinized connective tissue and fibrinoid may appear similar on histological sections (B35.10.w4).
  • Seen in association with a variety of conditions such as chronic foot lesions / Bumblefoot, enteritis, Colibacillosis, Avian Tuberculosis, Aspergillosis, Staphylococcosis, Gout, septicaemia and arthritis, as well as experimentally with repeated exposure to Salmonella typhimurium, Escherichia coli and their endotoxins (J6.9.w3, J6.21.w4, J6.23.w3, J26.5.w2, J14.29.w1, J27.43.w1).

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Treatment and Control

Specific Medical Treatment

WATERFOWL
  • Frequently not relevant as often diagnosed post mortem.
  • No specific treatments have been recognized for waterfowl.
  • Colchicine can prevent the development of some forms of human familial amyloidosis. This antimitotic and anti-inflammatory agent blocks the synthesis and secretion of SAA in the liver in mice.
  • Oral/local instillation of DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide) has occasionally resulted in some resorption of amyloid deposits in mice and humans.

(B20.17.w14).

Related Techniques
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General Nursing and Surgical Techniques

WATERFOWL
  • Abdominal paracentesis has been used to reduce ascites associated with hepatic amyloidosis (B39.w1).
  • Remove any underlying disease conditions if possible e.g. treat bacterial infections with antibiotics (B20.17.w14).
Related Techniques
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Preventative Measures

Vaccination WATERFOWL --
Prophylactic Treatment

WATERFOWL

--
Related Techniques

--

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Environmental and Population Control Measures

General Environment Changes, Cleaning and Disinfection

WATERFOWL

  • Improve hygiene to decrease exposure to pathogens such as Salmonella typhimurium and Escherichia coli.
  • Decrease environmental stressors.

(B13.46.w1)

Population Control Measures WATERFOWL
  • Reduce social stressors, particularly overcrowding (B13.46.w1).
Isolation, Quarantine and Screening WATERFOWL --
Related Techniques
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