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Vet. Sci., Volume 7, Issue 3 (September 2020) – 63 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Large amounts of manure are produced due to intensive and large-scale livestock production. Livestock manure is commonly used worldwide as an organic fertilizer in agricultural fields, and consists, mostly, of animal feces. As a result, it carries several antibiotic residues, antibiotic resistance genes and antibiotic-resistant bacteria that can be transferred into manure-amended soils. The richness in nutrients, the high abundance and diversity of bacteria populations and antibiotic residues render manure a hotspot for antimicrobial gene dissemination by horizontal transfer events, with frequent conjugation events occurring in the manure environment. As reduction methodologies are not able to reduce the concentrations of all antimicrobials and microorganisms, it is crucial to reduce the amounts of antimicrobials that end up in soil. . View this paper.
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Case Report
Overt Infection with Chronic Bee Paralysis Virus (CBPV) in Two Honey Bee Colonies
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 142; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030142 - 22 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2125
Abstract
Chronic Bee Paralysis Virus (CBPV), a widespread honey bee RNA virus, causes massive worker bee losses, mostly in strong colonies. Two different syndromes, with paralysis, ataxia and flight incapacity on one hand and black hairless individuals with shortened abdomens on the other, can [...] Read more.
Chronic Bee Paralysis Virus (CBPV), a widespread honey bee RNA virus, causes massive worker bee losses, mostly in strong colonies. Two different syndromes, with paralysis, ataxia and flight incapacity on one hand and black hairless individuals with shortened abdomens on the other, can affect a colony simultaneously. This case report presents two Apis mellifera carnica colonies with symptoms of paralysis and hairless black syndrome in 2019. Via RT-PCR, a highly positive result for CBPV was detected in both samples. Further problems, such as a Nosema infection and Varroa infestation, were present in these colonies. Therapy methods were applied to colony 1 comprising queen replacement, shook swarm method and Varroa control, whereas colony 2 was asphyxiated after queen loss and colony weakening. After therapy, colony 1 was wintered without symptoms. Beekeeping and sanitary measures can save a CBPV-infected colony, while further complications result in total colony loss. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Communication
Neutrophil-to-Lymphocyte Ratio (NLR) in Canine Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 141; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030141 - 22 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1851
Abstract
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a multifactorial chronic inflammatory disorder leading to structural changes in the intestinal wall. In humans, the neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) has been proposed as a promising marker of IBD. This study evaluated the possible clinical and prognostic significance of [...] Read more.
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a multifactorial chronic inflammatory disorder leading to structural changes in the intestinal wall. In humans, the neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) has been proposed as a promising marker of IBD. This study evaluated the possible clinical and prognostic significance of the NLR in dogs with IBD. This retrospective study enrolled 41 dogs diagnosed with IBD presented to University of Pisa from January 2017 to January 2018. For each dog, age, sex, canine chronic enteropathy clinical activity index (CCECAI), endoscopic and histopathological grading were recorded. Complete blood count, serum total protein, albumin, cholesterol, and C-reactive protein at the time of endoscopy were recorded. A control group (CG) of healthy dogs from a blood donor database was built. NLR was calculated for both IBD and CG as the ratio between absolute neutrophils and lymphocytes. Presence of crypt distension, lacteal dilation (LD), mucosal fibrosis, intraepithelial lymphocytes was recorded. Follow-up information was obtained from electronic medical records and dogs were classified as responders and non-responders based on CCECAI variation between admission and the first recheck. IRE dogs showed higher NLR compared to healthy dogs. NLR correlated negatively with total protein, albumin, and cholesterol and correlated positively with CCECAI. Dogs with LD showed higher NLR than dogs without LD. Non-responders showed higher NLR compared to responders. In conclusion, as in IBD human patients, the NLR acts as an inflammatory marker providing further information on severity of the disease and could be useful in predicting treatment response. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Clinical Veterinary Medicine)
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Review
Identifying Sources of Potential Bias When Using Online Survey Data to Explore Horse Training, Management, and Behaviour: A Systematic Literature Review
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 140; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030140 - 22 Sep 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2533
Abstract
Owner-reported behavioural observations form an essential part of the veterinarians’ diagnosis and treatment plan. The way we train and manage horses affects their behaviour and, in turn, their health and welfare. Current horse training and management practices are largely driven by traditional techniques [...] Read more.
Owner-reported behavioural observations form an essential part of the veterinarians’ diagnosis and treatment plan. The way we train and manage horses affects their behaviour and, in turn, their health and welfare. Current horse training and management practices are largely driven by traditional techniques and longstanding methodologies. These approaches generally lack an evidence base for evaluation purposes. The absence of evidence and evaluation contributes to the persistent use of risky practices and this, in turn, increases risk of potential harms for both horse and rider, and fuels questioning of the equine industry’s current social license to operate. Objective evidence is required to make training and management decisions based on demonstrable best practice. Large-scale experimental or intervention studies using horses are generally not practical because of the associated costs and logistics of gaining ethical approval. Small studies generally lack statistical power and are subject to the effects of many forms of bias that demand caution in the interpretation of any observed effects. An alternative to collecting large amounts of empirical data is the use of owner-reported observations via online survey. Horse owners are ideally placed to report on the domestic equine triad of training, management, and behaviour. The current article highlights three sources of potential bias in a systematic review of literature on large-scale online studies of horse owners’ observational reports that met the following selection criteria: English-language, published, peer-reviewed articles reporting on studies with over 1000 respondents and open access to the survey instrument. The online surveys were evaluated for three common forms of bias: recall, confirmation, and sampling bias. This review reveals that online surveys are useful for gathering data on the triad of horse training, management, and behaviour. However, current use of online surveys to collect data on equitation science (including horse training, management, and behaviour) could be improved by using a standardised and validated tool. Such a tool would facilitate comparisons among equine and equitation science studies, thus advancing our understanding of the impacts of training and management on horse behaviour. The authors of the current review suggest the use of a standardised behavioural and management assessment tool for horses. Such a tool would help define what constitutes normal behaviour within geographically disparate populations of horses, leading to improvements in rider safety and horse welfare. Full article
Article
Modeling the Influence of Mites on Honey Bee Populations
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 139; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030139 - 21 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1644
Abstract
The Varroa destructor mite has been associated with the recent decline in honey bee populations. While experimental data are crucial in understanding declines, insights can be gained from models of honey bee populations. We add the influence of the V. destructor mite to [...] Read more.
The Varroa destructor mite has been associated with the recent decline in honey bee populations. While experimental data are crucial in understanding declines, insights can be gained from models of honey bee populations. We add the influence of the V. destructor mite to our existing honey bee model in order to better understand the impact of mites on honey bee colonies. Our model is based on differential equations which track the number of bees in each day in the life of the bee and accounts for differences in the survival rates of different bee castes. The model shows that colony survival is sensitive to the hive grooming rate and reproductive rate of mites, which is enhanced in drone capped cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Article
Cattle Manure Trade Network Analysis and the Relevant Spatial Pathways in an Endemic Area of Foot and Mouth Disease in Northern Thailand
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 138; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030138 - 19 Sep 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1329
Abstract
Animal movement is one of the most important risk factors for outbreaks of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in cattle. Likewise, FMD can spread to cattle farms via vehicles contaminated with the FMD virus. In Northern Thailand, the movement of manure transport vehicles [...] Read more.
Animal movement is one of the most important risk factors for outbreaks of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in cattle. Likewise, FMD can spread to cattle farms via vehicles contaminated with the FMD virus. In Northern Thailand, the movement of manure transport vehicles and the circulation of manure bags among cattle farms are considered as potential risk factors for FMD outbreaks among cattle farms. This study aimed to determine the characteristics and movement patterns of manure tradesman using social network analysis. A structured questionnaire was used to identify sequences of farms routinely visited by each tradesman. A total of 611 participants were interviewed, including 154 beef farmers, 407 dairy farmers, 36 tradesmen, and 14 final purchasers. A static weighted directed one-mode network was constructed, and the network metrics were measured. For the manure tradesman–cattle farmer network, the tradesman possessed the highest value of in- and out-degree centralities (71 and 4), betweenness centralities (114.5), and k-core values (2). These results indicated that the tradesman had a high frequency of farm visits and had a remarkable influence on other persons (nodes) in the network. The movement of vehicles ranged from within local districts, among districts, or even across provinces. Unclean manure plastic bags were circulated among cattle farms. Therefore, both vehicles and the bags may act as a disease fomite. Interestingly, no recording system was implemented for the movement of manure transport vehicles. This study suggested that the relevant authority and stakeholders should be aware of the risk of FMD spreading within this manure trading network. The findings from this study can be used as supporting data that can be used for enhancing FMD control measures, especially for FMD endemic areas. Full article
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Case Report
Mammary Diseases in a Captive Reared Agouti (Dasyprocta leporina) in Trinidad
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 137; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030137 - 19 Sep 2020
Viewed by 1213
Abstract
The agouti (Dasyprocta leporina) is a neotropical rodent that is utilized for its meat by hunters as well as wildlife farmers. There is a dearth of information on infectious diseases that affect these animals. At present, there has been no recording [...] Read more.
The agouti (Dasyprocta leporina) is a neotropical rodent that is utilized for its meat by hunters as well as wildlife farmers. There is a dearth of information on infectious diseases that affect these animals. At present, there has been no recording in the literature on diseases of mammary tissue in these animals. This case reported on the abnormal mammary enlargement of a four year old female agouti post-partum. Blood, milk and tissue samples were taken for diagnostics to determine the cause of disease. Histological samples confirmed the swelling of the mammary gland as a diffuse mammary hyperplasia. Hematological values obtained were within the reference range of agoutis reared in captivity. The milk samples that were taken cultured Staphylococcus spp. in one mammary gland (left inguinal). The cultured bacteria in the milk samples confirmed this animal had mastitis. The bacterial cultured (Staphylococcus aureus) was sensitive to tetracyclines, ampicillin, trivetrin and ceftiofur. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first record in the literature on mastitis in the agouti. Thus, this information will add to the knowledge of diseases in captive reared agoutis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Anatomy, Histology and Pathology)
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Article
How the Infestation Level of Varroa destructor Affects the Distribution Pattern of Multi-Infested Cells in Worker Brood of Apis mellifera
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 136; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030136 - 17 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1177 | Correction
Abstract
The mite Varroa destructor, the main ectoparasite of honey bees, is a threat to apiculture worldwide. Understanding the ecological interactions between Varroa and honeybees is fundamental for reducing mite impact in apiaries. This work assesses bee colonies with various Varroa infestation levels [...] Read more.
The mite Varroa destructor, the main ectoparasite of honey bees, is a threat to apiculture worldwide. Understanding the ecological interactions between Varroa and honeybees is fundamental for reducing mite impact in apiaries. This work assesses bee colonies with various Varroa infestation levels in apiaries to determine: (1) the relationship between multi-infested brood cells and brood infestation level, (2) the damage caused by Varroa to parasitized honey bee pupae, and (3) mite reproduction rate at various infestation levels. Data were collected from 19 worker brood combs, each from a different colony, ranging from 160 to 1725 (mean = 706) sealed cells per comb. Mite distribution was aggregated, ranging from about 2% to 74% infested cells per comb. The percentage of cells invaded by one, two, three, four, or more than four foundress mites, as a function of infestation level, was estimated by five highly significant (p < 0.0001) second-degree polynomial regression equations. The correction factors found could increase the precision of prediction models. Varroa fertility and adult bee longevity decreased as multi-infestation levels increased, and the implications of this relationship are discussed. Finally, these findings could improve sampling methods and the timing of mite treatments in apiaries, thus favoring sustainable management strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Article
Comparison of Laparoscopic Steerable Instruments Performed by Expert Surgeons and Novices
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 135; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030135 - 15 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1350
Abstract
As an alternative to the surgical robot, some medical companies have engineered new steerable devices that mimic the robot’s capacities. This study aimed to assess how steerable instruments ameliorate the efficacy of suturing in comparison with the traditional instrument, and a combination instruments, [...] Read more.
As an alternative to the surgical robot, some medical companies have engineered new steerable devices that mimic the robot’s capacities. This study aimed to assess how steerable instruments ameliorate the efficacy of suturing in comparison with the traditional instrument, and a combination instruments, performed by experienced and novice surgeons. The study was performed by three experienced surgeons and three novice surgeons. The instruments employed were divided into three surgical sets: two steerable dissectors; one steerable dissector and one straight needle; two straight needle holders. The study supervisor recorded the total time for the procedure, the number of bites completed, the time for each bite, and the quality of the procedure. In our study, we found consistent data demonstrating that experienced laparoscopists completed the prescribed suture pattern with more bites in less time than novices. The use of two steerable instruments was more time consuming than standard straight instruments, but a combination of instruments was significantly less time consuming, as was the use of two straight needle holders. This result was even observed in novice surgeons. Combining a steerable instrument with a traditional straight needle holder provided more advantages in this study. Full article
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Article
Infectious Agents Identified by Real-Time PCR, Serology and Bacteriology in Blood and Peritoneal Exudate Samples of Cows Affected by Parietal Fibrinous Peritonitis after Caesarean Section
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 134; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030134 - 13 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1373
Abstract
The aim of this study was to identify the pathogens potentially involved in parietal fibrinous peritonitis (PFP). PFP is a complication of laparotomy in cattle, characterized by an accumulation of exudate inside a fibrinous capsule. We have studied 72 cases of PFP in [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to identify the pathogens potentially involved in parietal fibrinous peritonitis (PFP). PFP is a complication of laparotomy in cattle, characterized by an accumulation of exudate inside a fibrinous capsule. We have studied 72 cases of PFP in Belgian blue cows, confirmed by a standard diagnostic protocol. Blood was collected to evaluate the presence of antibodies for Mycoplasma bovis(M. bovis), Coxiella burnetii(C. burnetii) and Bovine Herpesvirus 4(BoHV4) by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Peritoneal exudate was obtained from the PFP cavity to perform bacteriological culture, and to identify the DNA of M. bovis, C. burnetii and BoHV4 using real time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Bacteriological culture was positive in most peritoneal samples (59/72); Trueperella pyogenes (T. pyogenes) (51/72) and Escherichia coli (E. coli) (20/72) were the most frequently identified. For BoHV4, the majority of cows showed positive serology and qPCR (56/72 and 49/72, respectively). Contrariwise, M. bovis (17/72 and 6/72, respectively) and C. burnetii (15/72 and 6/72, respectively) were less frequently detected (p < 0.0001). Our study proves that PFP can no longer be qualified as a sterile inflammation. Moreover, we herein describe the first identification of BoHV4 and C. burnetii in cows affected by PFP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Clinical Veterinary Medicine)
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Article
Hydrothermal Processing of Clarias gariepinus (Burchell, 1822) Filets: Insights on the Nutritive Value and Organoleptic Parameters
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030133 - 11 Sep 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1513
Abstract
This study evaluated the effects of cooking for different hydrothermal-treatment durations (10, 20, 30 and 40 min) on the proximate composition, amino acid profile, fatty acid composition and organoleptic parameters of filets of African catfish Clarias gariepinus (Burchell, 1822). Filets of the fish [...] Read more.
This study evaluated the effects of cooking for different hydrothermal-treatment durations (10, 20, 30 and 40 min) on the proximate composition, amino acid profile, fatty acid composition and organoleptic parameters of filets of African catfish Clarias gariepinus (Burchell, 1822). Filets of the fish were prepared from market size African catfish with similar breeding history. Parameters of the processed filet under the different hydrothermal durations were also compared against a raw–unprocessed control group except during organoleptic analysis. The results obtained revealed a significant increase in protein, fat and ash content until the 30th minute of hydrothermal processing (p ≤ 0.05). Beyond this processing time, protein and fat significantly reduced while ash remains unaffected. The same trend was observed for most essential/non-essential amino acids isolated as well as the prominent saturated fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids. In all, the raw control group consistently recorded the least values of nutritional components. The perception of assessors was, however, found to be similar (p ≥ 0.05) in terms of organoleptic parameters regardless of the duration of the processing time of the filets. It was concluded that cooking the African catfish filet using the hydrothermal method should not be extended beyond 30 min. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Physiology and Nutrition)
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Article
Sheep Brucellosis in Kuwait: A Large-Scale Serosurvey, Identification of Brucella Species and Zoonotic Significance
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 132; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030132 - 08 Sep 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1461
Abstract
Brucellosis is a common zoonotic disease of major concern in humans of Kuwait, and B. melitensis causes most human cases. The disease is endemic in small ruminants, cattle, and camels for decades, causing substantial economic losses in livestock production. However, a nationwide large-scale [...] Read more.
Brucellosis is a common zoonotic disease of major concern in humans of Kuwait, and B. melitensis causes most human cases. The disease is endemic in small ruminants, cattle, and camels for decades, causing substantial economic losses in livestock production. However, a nationwide large-scale investigation of brucellosis in the small ruminant population has not been done in the past two decades. A serosurvey of sheep brucellosis in the five districts of Kuwait with most animal production farms was done between 2016 and 2019. In total, 67,054 serum samples from 233 sheep herds were collected and tested. Additionally, milk and tissue samples were collected from 46 seropositive cases for bacteriology. Thirty persons from seven seropositive farms were tested by serology. The incidence of seropositive cases was 7% in districts devoid of vaccination, while it was 4.7% in farms with history of vaccination. The serosurvey revealed that 89% of non-vaccinated herds (n = 181) were seropositive by Rose Bengal test (RBT), buffered acidified plate antigen test (BAPAT), and complement fixation test (CFT). Prevalence of 100% was reported for non-vaccinated sheep herds from Al-Wafrah and Al-Jahra districts, followed by those from Al-Salmi (88.24%), Al-Abdali (86.7%) and Kabd (75.6%). Implementation of vaccination with B. melitensis Rev.1 vaccine and test-and-slaughters in 20 herds reduced the seroprevalence to 33.3% and 25% in herds from Al-Jahra and AL-Wafrah, respectively. B. melitensis was isolated from 20 samples (43.5%). More than half of the examined animal owners (56.6%) tested positive for Brucella using RBT, BAPAT and CFT. The high numbers of infected herds and high prevalence in herdsmen are alarming. Thus, control measures have to be ensured immediately. The epidemiological situation in Kuwait is similar to those of the neighboring countries and the combined action of these states is needed. The understanding of the economic and public health impact of brucellosis in Kuwait needs to grow. Full article
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Article
Seasonality of Nosema ceranae Infections and Their Relationship with Honey Bee Populations, Food Stores, and Survivorship in a North American Region
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 131; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030131 - 08 Sep 2020
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1840
Abstract
Nosema ceranae is an emerging pathogen of the western honey bee (Apis mellifera L.), and thus its seasonality and impact on bee colonies is not sufficiently documented for North America. This study was conducted to determine the infection intensity, prevalence, and viability [...] Read more.
Nosema ceranae is an emerging pathogen of the western honey bee (Apis mellifera L.), and thus its seasonality and impact on bee colonies is not sufficiently documented for North America. This study was conducted to determine the infection intensity, prevalence, and viability of N. ceranae in >200 honey bee colonies during spring, summer, and fall, in a North American region. We also determined the relationship of N. ceranae infections with colony populations, food stores, bee survivorship, and overwinter colony mortality. The highest rates of N. ceranae infection, prevalence, and spore viability were found in the spring and summer, while the lowest were recorded in the fall. N. ceranae spore viability was significantly correlated with its prevalence and infection intensity in bees. Threshold to high levels of N. ceranae infections (>1,000,000 spores/bee) were significantly associated with reduced bee populations and food stores in colonies. Furthermore, worker bee survivorship was significantly reduced by N. ceranae infections, although no association between N. ceranae and winter colony mortality was found. It is concluded that N. ceranae infections are highest in spring and summer and may be detrimental to honey bee populations and colony productivity. Our results support the notion that treatment is justified when infections of N. ceranae exceed 1,000,000 spores/bee. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Article
Epidemiological and Molecular Investigation of Ocular Fungal Infection in Equine from Egypt
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 130; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030130 - 08 Sep 2020
Viewed by 1323
Abstract
Diagnosis and treatment of ocular fungal infection in equine seems very challenging for owners and clinicians. The present study aimed to identify and characterize fungal species isolated from the eyes of clinically healthy and diseased equines (N = 100) from Dakahlia Governorate, Egypt. [...] Read more.
Diagnosis and treatment of ocular fungal infection in equine seems very challenging for owners and clinicians. The present study aimed to identify and characterize fungal species isolated from the eyes of clinically healthy and diseased equines (N = 100) from Dakahlia Governorate, Egypt. The work also involved morphological and molecular characterization of the major fungal species. In addition, correlations between the occurrence of isolated fungi and some of the potential risk factors were also investigated. Interestingly, the prevalence rate of ocular mycosis in all examined equines in the study was 28% and there were major clinical signs associated with ocular fungal infection. Moreover, the identified fungal species included Aspergillus flavus, A. fumigatus, A. niger, Penicillium spp., Mucor spp., and Alternari spp. with a corresponding prevalence rate of 63.9%, 27.8%, 15.3%, 18.1%, 13.9%, and 4.2%, respectively, in healthy equine eyes, while their prevalence in diseased equine eyes was 57.1%, 32.1%, 21.4%, 7.1%, 3.6%, and 0%. Furthermore, a statistical significant association (p < 0.05) was found between the frequency of isolation of A. fumigatus and Penicillium and several risk factors (breed, sex, and ground type), while the remaining risk factors and occurrence of fungi were not statistically correlated. A subset of the Aspergillus species samples positive by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) were sequenced and their phylogenetic analysis identified three species of Aspergillus. Taken together, our study provides novel data related to the occurrence of ocular mycosis in equine in Egypt. Given the zoonotic potential of some identified fungi, our data may be helpful for implementation of novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies for combating this sight-threatening infection in equine. Full article
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Article
Modeling Novel Putative Drugs and Vaccine Candidates against Tick-Borne Pathogens: A Subtractive Proteomics Approach
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 129; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030129 - 07 Sep 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1895
Abstract
Ticks and tick-borne pathogens (TBPs) continuously causing substantial losses to the public and veterinary health sectors. The identification of putative drug targets and vaccine candidates is crucial to control TBPs. No information has been recorded on designing novel drug targets and vaccine candidates [...] Read more.
Ticks and tick-borne pathogens (TBPs) continuously causing substantial losses to the public and veterinary health sectors. The identification of putative drug targets and vaccine candidates is crucial to control TBPs. No information has been recorded on designing novel drug targets and vaccine candidates based on proteins. Subtractive proteomics is an in silico approach that utilizes extensive screening for the identification of novel drug targets or vaccine candidates based on the determination of potential target proteins available in a pathogen proteome that may be used effectively to control diseases caused by these infectious agents. The present study aimed to investigate novel drug targets and vaccine candidates by utilizing subtractive proteomics to scan the available proteomes of TBPs and predict essential and non-host homologous proteins required for the survival of these diseases causing agents. Subtractive proteome analysis revealed a list of fifteen essential, non-host homologous, and unique metabolic proteins in the complete proteome of selected pathogens. Among these therapeutic target proteins, three were excluded due to the presence in host gut metagenome, eleven were found to be highly potential drug targets, while only one was found as a potential vaccine candidate against TBPs. The present study may provide a foundation to design potential drug targets and vaccine candidates for the effective control of infections caused by TBPs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trends in Tickborne Diseases)
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Article
Prognostic Factors and Life Expectancy in Canine Leishmaniosis
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030128 - 04 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1724
Abstract
Canine leishmaniosis (CanL) is a chronic and potentially fatal disease. The prognosis of CanL depends on the severity of the clinical signs and clinicopathological abnormalities presented by the dog at the time of diagnosis. This study aims to estimate the survival time of [...] Read more.
Canine leishmaniosis (CanL) is a chronic and potentially fatal disease. The prognosis of CanL depends on the severity of the clinical signs and clinicopathological abnormalities presented by the dog at the time of diagnosis. This study aims to estimate the survival time of dogs with CanL, determining the prognostic value of different clinical and clinicopathological parameters. Medical records of 99 dogs diagnosed with CanL in five veterinary centers of the Alentejo region (Portugal) were examined retrospectively. The majority of dogs presented hyperproteinemia, moderate normocytic normochromic anemia, normal blood urea and creatinine levels and were classified as stage 1 according to the International Interest Society (IRIS) guidelines at the time of diagnosis. The severity of anemia, presence of concomitant infectious diseases at the time of diagnosis and the anti-Leishmania therapy were correlated with the survival time. The influence of renal dysfunction was evaluated by Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curve and survival analysis. Survival analysis demonstrated that patients classified as IRIS 1 at the time of diagnosis survived more than four years, in contrast with dogs classified as IRIS 2 that survived around two and half years and dogs classified as IRIS 3–4 that survived around one month. IRIS stage deteriorated during the course of CanL in one third of the dogs and was the principal cause of death or euthanasia in a high proportion of animals. In some cases, dogs did not receive anti-Leishmania treatment or abandoned the veterinary follow-ups, which may have considerable repercussions for animal wellbeing and public health. This study reinforces the value of blood urea and creatinine levels as prognostic factors in CanL. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Clinical Veterinary Medicine)
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Article
Longitudinal Volumetric Assessment of Ventricular Enlargement in Pet Dogs Trained for Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) Studies
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030127 - 04 Sep 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1398
Abstract
Background: Recent studies suggest that clinically sound ventriculomegaly in dogs could be a preliminary form of the clinically significant hydrocephalus. We evaluated changes of ventricular volumes in awake functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) trained dogs with indirectly assessed cognitive abilities over time (thus [...] Read more.
Background: Recent studies suggest that clinically sound ventriculomegaly in dogs could be a preliminary form of the clinically significant hydrocephalus. We evaluated changes of ventricular volumes in awake functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) trained dogs with indirectly assessed cognitive abilities over time (thus avoiding the use of anaesthetics, which can alter the pressure). Our research question was whether ventricular enlargement developing over time would have any detrimental effect on staying still while being scanned; which can be extrapolated to the ability to pay attention and to exert inhibition. Methods: Seven healthy dogs, 2–8 years old at the baseline scan and 4 years older at rescan, participated in a rigorous and gradual training for staying motionless (<2 mm) in the magnetic resonance (MR) scanner without any sedation during 6 minute-long structural MR sequences. On T1 structural images, volumetric analyses of the lateral ventricles were completed by software guided semi-automated tissue-type segmentations performed with FMRIB Software Library (FSL, Analysis Group, Oxford, UK). Results and conclusion: We report significant enlargement for both ventricles (left: 47.46 %, right: 46.07 %) over time while dogs retained high levels of attention and inhibition. The results suggest that even considerable ventricular enlargement arising during normal aging does not necessarily reflect observable pathological changes in behavior. Full article
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Communication
Blood Parasites in Domestic Birds in Central Iran
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 126; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030126 - 04 Sep 2020
Viewed by 1374
Abstract
Parasites may affect the dynamics of bird populations. Plasmodium, Leucocytozoon and Haemoproteus are well-known avian haematozoa that can trigger decreased productivity and high mortality in domesticated birds. In this study, we evaluated the prevalence of avian blood parasites (Plasmodium, Leucocytozoon [...] Read more.
Parasites may affect the dynamics of bird populations. Plasmodium, Leucocytozoon and Haemoproteus are well-known avian haematozoa that can trigger decreased productivity and high mortality in domesticated birds. In this study, we evaluated the prevalence of avian blood parasites (Plasmodium, Leucocytozoon and Haemoproteus) against 335 birds of 8 species in the Yazd province in central Iran. To detect blood parasites, Giemsa-stained blood smears were prepared. Of the birds, 11.64% (39/335) were infected with at least one parasite genus, particularly Haemoproteus (32.6%; 23/335). The total prevalence values for Plasmodium, Haemoproteus and Leucocytozoon were 1.7, 6.8 and 2.9%, respectively. Plasmodium had lower prevalence rates of 1.7% (6/335). Among birds, pigeons, hens and ducks have the highest prevalence of Haemoproteus, Leucocytozoon and Plasmodium parasites at 1.7%, 6.8% and 2.9%, respectively. Results from this research extend our knowledge on the incidence of avian blood parasites in domesticated birds living in central Iran. The overall low incidence of avian blood parasites in birds was found in the Yazd province, Iran. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trends in Tickborne Diseases)
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Article
Effect of Api-Bioxal® and ApiHerb® Treatments against Nosema ceranae Infection in Apis mellifera Investigated by Two qPCR Methods
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030125 - 04 Sep 2020
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 1571
Abstract
Nosema ceranae is a worldwide distributed midgut parasite of western honey bees, leading to dwindling colonies and their collapse. As a treatment, only fumagillin is available, causing issues like resistance and hampered bee physiology. This study aimed to evaluate ApiHerb® and Api-Bioxal [...] Read more.
Nosema ceranae is a worldwide distributed midgut parasite of western honey bees, leading to dwindling colonies and their collapse. As a treatment, only fumagillin is available, causing issues like resistance and hampered bee physiology. This study aimed to evaluate ApiHerb® and Api-Bioxal® as treatments against N. ceranae. The efficacy was tested using two qPCR methods based on the 16S rRNA and Hsp70 genes. In addition, these methods were compared for their aptitude for the quantification of the infection. For this, 19 colonies were selected based on the presence of N. ceranae infections. The colonies were divided into three groups: treated with ApiHerb, Api-Bioxal with previous queen caging and an untreated control. All colonies were sampled pre- and post-treatment. The bees were analyzed individually and in duplicate with both qPCR methods. All bees in the pre-treatment tested positive for N. ceranae. Both treatments reduced the abundance of N. ceranae, but ApiHerb also decreased the prevalence of infected bees. Analysis with the 16S rRNA method resulted in several orders of magnitude more copies than analysis with the Hsp70 method. We conclude that both products are suitable candidates for N. ceranae treatment. From our analysis, the qPCR method based on the Hsp70 gene results as more apt for the exact quantification of N. ceranae as is needed for the development of veterinary medicinal products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Communication
Histopathological Findings in Testes from Apparently Healthy Drones of Apis mellifera ligustica
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030124 - 02 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1348
Abstract
It is well known that factors acting on the decrease of population of honeybees, can act on the male and female reproductive system, compromising the fertility of queens and drones. While there are many studies on female fertility, only a few studies have [...] Read more.
It is well known that factors acting on the decrease of population of honeybees, can act on the male and female reproductive system, compromising the fertility of queens and drones. While there are many studies on female fertility, only a few studies have focused on male fertility and the possible alterations of the reproductive system. The testes of 25 samples of adult drones of Apis mellifera ligustica were analyzed by histopathology using an innovative histological processing technique and the alterations that were found are here described. Most of the samples showed unaltered testes but, in some cases, samples showed degenerated seminiferous tubules, while others appeared immature. Although a limited number of samples were analyzed, the results obtained displayed that histopathological alterations of the testes exist also in honeybees and that more interest should be put to the matter, as honeybees could be considered as bioindicators for endocrine disruptors. Future studies on a larger number of samples are necessary to analyze how different environmental factors can act and induce alterations in the honeybee reproductive system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Article
Epidemiology of African Swine Fever in Piggeries in the Center, South and South-West of Cameroon
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 123; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030123 - 01 Sep 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1451
Abstract
African Swine Fever (ASF) is enzootic in Cameroon. A cross-sectional study was conducted in the center, south and south-west regions of Cameroon in order to determine: the knowledge, skills and practices at risk of pig breeders; the prevalence of the disease in piggeries; [...] Read more.
African Swine Fever (ASF) is enzootic in Cameroon. A cross-sectional study was conducted in the center, south and south-west regions of Cameroon in order to determine: the knowledge, skills and practices at risk of pig breeders; the prevalence of the disease in piggeries; the genome of the circulating virus. A total of 684 blood samples were collected in 209 farms for RT-PCR and ELISA analyses at the National Veterinary Laboratory (LANAVET) annex in Yaoundé. Prevalences of 15.2% (95CI: 12.5–17.9%) by ELISA, 23.8% (95CI: 20.6–27.0%) by RT-PCR, and 15.2% (95CI: 12.5–17.9%) by ELISA-PCR, were recorded. Of the farmers surveyed, 90% knew about the ASF and 55.3% have already experienced it. The 47.4% of them would not be able to recognize ASF if it occurred and, according to them, the risk of the disease introduction in farms would be 32% linked to the animal health personnel who work on farms. Molecular characterization revealed that only ASF genotype-I variable 19T-RSs is circulating. ASF is still hovering at a risky rate over the pig sector of Cameroon. The control of ASF needs an epidemiological surveillance, a better involvement of all stakeholders, sensitization of breeders and an effective State support for producers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue African Swine Fever (ASF))
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Article
Serological Evidence of Avian Influenza in Captive Wild Birds in a Zoo and Two Safari Parks in Bangladesh
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 122; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030122 - 01 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1852
Abstract
Avian influenza (AI) is endemic and frequently causes seasonal outbreaks in winter in Bangladesh due to high pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 and low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) H9N2. Among avian influenza A viruses (AIV), H5, H7, and H9 subtypes have the most [...] Read more.
Avian influenza (AI) is endemic and frequently causes seasonal outbreaks in winter in Bangladesh due to high pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 and low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) H9N2. Among avian influenza A viruses (AIV), H5, H7, and H9 subtypes have the most zoonotic potential. Captive birds in zoos and safari parks are used for educational, recreational, breeding, and conservational purposes in Bangladesh. To screen for AIV in captive birds to assess potential public health threats, we conducted a cross-sectional study in two safari parks and one zoo in Bangladesh for four months, from November to December 2013 and from January to February 2014. We collected blood samples, oropharyngeal, and cloacal swabs from 228 birds. We tested serum samples for AIV antibodies using competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (c-ELISA) and AIV sero-subtype H5, H7, and H9 using hemagglutination inhibition (HI) test. Swab samples were tested for the presence of avian influenza viral RNA using real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR). Across all the samples, AIV antibody prevalence was 9.7% (95% CI: 6.1–14.2, n = 228) and AIV HA subtype H5, H7 and H9 sero-prevalence was 0% (95% CI: 0–1.6, n = 228), 0% (95% CI: 0–1.6, n = 228) and 6.6% (95% CI: 3.72–10.6, n = 228), respectively. No AI viral RNA (M-gene) was detected in any swab sample (0%, 95% CI: 0–1.6, n = 228). Birds in the Safari park at Cox’s Bazar had a higher prevalence in both AIV antibody prevalence (13.5%) and AIV H9 sero-prevalence (9.6%) than any of the other sites, although the difference was not statistically significant. Among eight species of birds, Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) had the highest sero-positivity for both AIV antibody prevalence (26.1%) and AIV H9 prevalence (17.4%) followed by Golden pheasant (Chrysolophus pictus) with AIV antibody prevalence of 18.2% and AIV H9 prevalence of 11.4%. Our results highlight the presence of AI antibodies indicating low pathogenic AIV mingling in captive birds in zoos and safari parks in Bangladesh. Continuous programmed surveillance is therefore recommended to help better understand the diversity of AIVs and provide a clear picture of AI in captive wild birds, enabling interventions to reduce the risk of AIV transmission to humans. Full article
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Communication
Effects of Lactobacillus Fermentum Supplementation on Body Weight and Pro-Inflammatory Cytokine Expression in Campylobacter Jejuni-Challenged Chickens
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 121; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030121 - 29 Aug 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1628
Abstract
Due to the interest in using probiotic bacteria in poultry production, this research was focused on evaluating the effects of Lactobacillus fermentum Biocenol CCM 7514 administration on body weight gain and cytokine gene expression in chickens challenged with Campylobacter jejuni. One-hundred and [...] Read more.
Due to the interest in using probiotic bacteria in poultry production, this research was focused on evaluating the effects of Lactobacillus fermentum Biocenol CCM 7514 administration on body weight gain and cytokine gene expression in chickens challenged with Campylobacter jejuni. One-hundred and eight 1-day old COBB 500 broiler chickens were equally assigned to four experimental groups at random. In the control group (C) chicks were left untreated, whereas in groups LB and LBCj a suspension of L. fermentum was administered. A suspension of C. jejuni was subsequently applied to groups Cj and LBCj. Body weight was registered, and the individuals were later slaughtered; cecum samples were collected at 12, 36 and 48 h post-infection (hpi). The entire experiment lasted seven days. Reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) was used to determine expression levels of IL-1β, IL-15, IL-17, and IL-18 at each time point. Pathogen-infected individuals were observed to weigh significantly less than those fed with the probiotic. Significant differences were also found in transcript abundance; expression of IL-15 was downregulated by the probiotic and upregulated by C. jejuni. The effects of bacterial treatments were time-dependent, as the expression profiles differed at later stages. The present outcomes demonstrate that L. fermentum both reduces the impact of C. jejuni infection on chicken body weight and regulates positively pro-inflammatory cytokine expression, which ultimately increase bird well-being and improves production. Full article
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Article
Predictive Value of Veterinary Student Application Data for Class Rank at End of Year 1
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 120; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030120 - 29 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1323
Abstract
Student applications for admission to the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine include the following information: undergraduate grade point average (GPA), GPA in science courses (GPAScience), GPA for the last 45 credit hours (GPALast45hrs), results for the Graduate Record Examination Quantitative and [...] Read more.
Student applications for admission to the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine include the following information: undergraduate grade point average (GPA), GPA in science courses (GPAScience), GPA for the last 45 credit hours (GPALast45hrs), results for the Graduate Record Examination Quantitative and Verbal Reasoning Measures (GRE-QV), results for the GRE Analytical Writing Measure (GRE-AW), and grades received for 10 required prerequisite courses. In addition, three faculty members independently review and score subjective information in applicants’ files (FileScore). The admissions committee determines a composite Admission Score (AdmScore), which is based on GPA, GPAScience, GPALast45hrs, GRE-QV, GRE-AW, and the FileScore. The AdmScore is generally perceived to be a good predictor of class rank at the end of year 1 (CREY1). However, this has not been verified, nor has it been determined which components of the AdmScore have the strongest correlation with CREY1. The present study therefore compared each component of the AdmScore for correlation with CREY1, for the three classes admitted in 2015, 2016 and 2017 (Class15, Class16, Class17). Results suggest that only a few components of the application file are needed to make strong predictive statements about the academic success of veterinary students during the first year of the curriculum. Full article
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Perspective
A One-Health Model for Reversing Honeybee (Apis mellifera L.) Decline
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030119 - 27 Aug 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2205
Abstract
Global insect decline impacts ecosystem resilience; pollinators such as honeybees (Apis mellifera L.) have suffered extensive losses over the last decade, threatening food security. Research has focused discretely on in-hive threats (e.g., Nosema and Varroa destructor) and broader external causes of [...] Read more.
Global insect decline impacts ecosystem resilience; pollinators such as honeybees (Apis mellifera L.) have suffered extensive losses over the last decade, threatening food security. Research has focused discretely on in-hive threats (e.g., Nosema and Varroa destructor) and broader external causes of decline (e.g., agrochemicals, habitat loss). This has notably failed to translate into successful reversal of bee declines. Working at the interdisciplinary nexus of entomological, social and ecological research, we posit that veterinary research needs to adopt a “One-Health” approach to address the scope of crises facing pollinators. We demonstrate that reversing declines will require integration of hive-specific solutions, a reappraisal of engagement with the many stakeholders whose actions affect bee health, and recontextualising both of these within landscape scale efforts. Other publications within this special issue explore novel technologies, emergent diseases and management approaches; our aim is to place these within the “One-Health” context as a pathway to securing honeybee health. Governmental policy reform offers a particularly timely pathway to achieving this goal. Acknowledging that healthy honeybees need an interdisciplinary approach to their management will enhance the contributions of veterinary research in delivering systemic improvements in bee health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Communication
The Influence of β-1,3-1,6-Glucans on Rabies Vaccination Titers in Cats
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 118; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030118 - 26 Aug 2020
Viewed by 1447
Abstract
β-glucans have been shown to stimulate the immune system in several animal species. The aim of this study was to evaluate the immune stimulation capacity of a fully formulated diet with β-1,3-1,6-glucans in cats, by assessing the rabies antibody titer after vaccination. Thirty-five [...] Read more.
β-glucans have been shown to stimulate the immune system in several animal species. The aim of this study was to evaluate the immune stimulation capacity of a fully formulated diet with β-1,3-1,6-glucans in cats, by assessing the rabies antibody titer after vaccination. Thirty-five healthy cats were recruited. The cats were placed into two groups and fed a standard diet in accordance with body weight. One group had the β-glucans incorporated into the diet; the other group served as the control group. After two weeks of dietary adjustment; the rabies vaccine (Imrab® 3 TF; Merial) was administered on days 0 and 21. Blood samples were taken on days 0, 21, and 42. Titers were determined with the rapid fluorescent foci inhibition test (RFFIT). Titers at days 21 and 42 were compared between the two groups in a linear mixed effects model. This study showed that the animals receiving the non-supplemented feed had higher post-vaccination rabies antibody titers. This indicates that, in contrast to other animal species, the β-glucan supplemented diet did not have the expected positive effect on the rabies antibody titers in cats. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbiology and Immunology)
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Article
Molecular and Serological Footprints of Mycobacterium avium Subspecies Infections in Zoo Animals
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 117; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030117 - 23 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1361
Abstract
Background: Mycobacteria of the Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) pose a significant risk to zoological collections. Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis (MAP) is a member of MAC and the causative agent of Johne’s disease. Despite many reports in animals kept in zoological gardens, systemic surveillance [...] Read more.
Background: Mycobacteria of the Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) pose a significant risk to zoological collections. Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis (MAP) is a member of MAC and the causative agent of Johne’s disease. Despite many reports in animals kept in zoological gardens, systemic surveillance has rarely been reported. Methods: In this study, archived serum samples collected from animal species at the Wilhelma Zoological and Botanical Gardens in Stuttgart, Germany, were screened for the presence of antibodies against MAC and MAP. In addition, molecular investigations were performed on necropsy, fecal, and environmental samples. Results: In total, 30/381 serum samples of various mammalian species were positive for MAC antibodies in ELISA, while one sample of a reticulated giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis reticulata) was positive in MAP-specific ELISA. Samples from many species were positive in pan-Mycobacterium real-time PCR (40/43 fecal samples, 27/43 environmental samples, and 31/90 necropsy samples). Surprisingly, no sample was positive in the MAP-specific molecular assays. However, two environmental samples from primate enclosures were positive in Mycobacterium avium subspecies hominissuis (MAH)-specific real-time PCR. Conclusions: The results reveal serological indications of MAC infections in the zoological collection. However, the presence of a MAP-contaminated environment by a high-shedding individual animal or MAP-infected population is unlikely. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycobacterial Infections in Livestock, Companion, and Wild Animals)
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Article
Unraveling Honey Bee–Varroa destructor Interaction: Multiple Factors Involved in Differential Resistance between Two Uruguayan Populations
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 116; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030116 - 20 Aug 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1509
Abstract
The ectoparasite Varroa destructor is the greatest biotic threat of honey bees Apis mellifera in vast regions of the world. Recently, the study of natural mite-resistant populations has gained much interest to understand the action of natural selection on the mechanisms that limit [...] Read more.
The ectoparasite Varroa destructor is the greatest biotic threat of honey bees Apis mellifera in vast regions of the world. Recently, the study of natural mite-resistant populations has gained much interest to understand the action of natural selection on the mechanisms that limit the mite population. In this study, the components of the A. melliferaV. destructor relationship were thoroughly examined and compared in resistant and susceptible honey bee populations from two regions of Uruguay. Mite-resistant honey bees have greater behavioral resistance (hygienic and grooming behaviors) than susceptible honey bees. At the end of the summer, resistant honey bees had fewer mites and a lower deformed wing virus (DWV) viral load than susceptible honey bees. DWV variant A was the only detected variant in honey bees and mites. Molecular analysis by Short Tandem Repeat showed that resistant honey bees were Africanized (A. m. scutellata hybrids), whereas susceptible honey bees were closer to European subspecies. Furthermore, significant genetic differentiation was also found between the mite populations. The obtained results show that the natural resistance of honey bees to V. destructor in Uruguay depends on several factors and that the genetic variants of both organisms can play a relevant role. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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Article
Training of Primary Chicken Monocytes Results in Enhanced Pro-Inflammatory Responses
by , , , and
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 115; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030115 - 19 Aug 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1681
Abstract
Beta-glucan-stimulated mammalian myeloid cells, such as macrophages, show an increased responsiveness to secondary stimulation in a nonspecific manner. This phenomenon is known as trained innate immunity and is important to prevent reinfections. Trained innate immunity seems to be an evolutionary conserved phenomenon among [...] Read more.
Beta-glucan-stimulated mammalian myeloid cells, such as macrophages, show an increased responsiveness to secondary stimulation in a nonspecific manner. This phenomenon is known as trained innate immunity and is important to prevent reinfections. Trained innate immunity seems to be an evolutionary conserved phenomenon among plants, invertebrates and mammalian species. Our study aimed to explore the training of primary chicken monocytes. We hypothesized that primary chicken monocytes, similar to their mammalian counterparts, can be trained with β-glucan resulting in increased responses of these cells to a secondary stimulus. Primary blood monocytes of white leghorn chickens were primary stimulated with β-glucan microparticulates (M-βG), lipopolysaccharide (LPS), recombinant chicken interleukin-4 (IL-4) or combinations of these components for 48 h. On day 6, the primary stimulated cells were secondary stimulated with LPS. Nitric oxide (NO) production levels were measured as an indicator of pro-inflammatory activity. In addition, the cells were analyzed by flow cytometry to characterize the population of trained cells and to investigate the expression of surface markers associated with activation. After the secondary LPS stimulation, surface expression of colony stimulating factor 1 receptor (CSF1R) and the activation markers CD40 and major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC-II) was higher on macrophages that were trained with a combination of M-βG and IL-4 compared to unstimulated cells. This increased expression was paralleled by enhanced NO production. In conclusion, this study showed that trained innate immunity can be induced in primary chicken monocytes with β-glucan, which is in line with previous experiments in mammalian species. Innate immune training may have the potential to improve health and vaccination strategies within the poultry sector. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbiology and Immunology)
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Article
Flow Cytometry-Detected Immunological Markers and on Farm Recorded Parameters in Composite Cow Milk as Related to Udder Health Status
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 114; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030114 - 17 Aug 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1241
Abstract
Flow cytometry is a powerful technology used in many fields of cell biology. It is also used as a routine method to count somatic cells in milk and to characterize bovine milk leukocytes. In this study, we used flow cytometry to simultaneously assess [...] Read more.
Flow cytometry is a powerful technology used in many fields of cell biology. It is also used as a routine method to count somatic cells in milk and to characterize bovine milk leukocytes. In this study, we used flow cytometry to simultaneously assess the viability, the percentage of the single subsets of leukocytes and to quantify the expression of CD11b, an immunological marker of cell activation status. Immunological markers were then related with on farm recorded parameters as milk electrical conductivity (MEC) and average milk flow rate (MFR). Composite milk samples were collected from 43 cows, nine of which had naturally infected udders and 34 of which had no infected udders. First, the milk samples were classified according to bacteriological test in positive and negative. The results showed that the negative samples to bacteriological test had: (i) significantly higher percentages of live lymphocytes; (ii) significantly lower percentages of CD11b+ leukocytes; (iii) significantly lower MEC and higher MFR values. Then, samples were classified in three groups according to somatic cell count (SCC): Group A (n = 15), samples with SCC ≤ 100,000 cells/mL, all negative to bacteriological analysis; Group B (n = 11), samples with 100,000 < SCC < 300,000 cells/m, with four samples positive to bacteriological analysis; Group C (n = 17), samples with SCC ≥ 300,000 cell/mL with five samples positive to bacteriological analysis. Multivariate discriminant analysis was used to verify which flow cytometry immunological markers and on farm recorded parameters could better discriminate among the different groups of SCCs. Linear discriminant analysis (LDA) indicated that 5 of the 10 parameters could best be used to reveal the differences between positive and negative samples among the considered groups of SCCs. Furthermore, the Canonical discriminant analysis (CDA) indicated that composite milk samples with different SCC and infection status were clearly separated from each other in a two-dimensional space. In conclusion, the study highlighted that: (1) the conventional flow cytometry analysis applied on milk samples is a useful tool to investigate immunological parameters as potential indicators of udder health; (2) the combined evaluation of live milk leukocytes and recorded farm parameters could be useful to assess udder health status in dairy cows. The results obtained from this pilot study on few data require new and larger trials to be confirmed. Full article
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Article
Honey as a Source of Environmental DNA for the Detection and Monitoring of Honey Bee Pathogens and Parasites
Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(3), 113; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7030113 - 15 Aug 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2287
Abstract
Environmental DNA (eDNA) has been proposed as a powerful tool to detect and monitor cryptic, elusive, or invasive organisms. We recently demonstrated that honey constitutes an easily accessible source of eDNA. In this study, we extracted DNA from 102 honey samples (74 from [...] Read more.
Environmental DNA (eDNA) has been proposed as a powerful tool to detect and monitor cryptic, elusive, or invasive organisms. We recently demonstrated that honey constitutes an easily accessible source of eDNA. In this study, we extracted DNA from 102 honey samples (74 from Italy and 28 from 17 other countries of all continents) and tested the presence of DNA of nine honey bee pathogens and parasites (Paenibacillus larvae, Melissococcus plutonius, Nosema apis, Nosema ceranae, Ascosphaera apis,Lotmaria passim, Acarapis woodi, Varroa destructor, and Tropilaelaps spp.) using qualitative PCR assays. All honey samples contained DNA from V. destructor, confirming the widespread diffusion of this mite. None of the samples gave positive amplifications for N. apis, A. woodi, and Tropilaelaps spp. M. plutonius was detected in 87% of the samples, whereas the other pathogens were detected in 43% to 57% of all samples. The frequency of Italian samples positive for P. larvae was significantly lower (49%) than in all other countries (79%). The co-occurrence of positive samples for L. passim and A. apis with N. ceranae was significant. This study demonstrated that honey eDNA can be useful to establish monitoring tools to evaluate the sanitary status of honey bee populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Honey Bee Health)
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