Wildlife Histopathology and Molecular Diagnosis

A special issue of Animals (ISSN 2076-2615). This special issue belongs to the section "Mammals".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2024 | Viewed by 152

Special Issue Editors

E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
1. The Oceanic Platform of the Canary Islands (PLOCAN), Carretera de Taliarte, s/n, 35214 Telde, Las Palmas of Gran Canaria, Spain
2.Loro Parque Foundation, Avenida Loro Parque, s/n, 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife, Spain
3. Veterinary Histology and Pathology, Institute of Animal Health and Food Safety (IUSA), Veterinary School, University of Las Palmas of Gran Canaria, Campus Universitario Cardones de Arucas, Trasmontaña s/n, 35413 Arucas, Las Palmas of Gran Canaria, Spain
Interests: cetaceans; marine mammals; forensic pathology; veterinary medicine; animal pathology; dolphins; whales
Institute of Animal Health and Food Safety (IUSA), Veterinary School, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, 35001 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain
Interests: marine mammals; dolphin; cetaceans; animal physiology; animal pathology; veterinary medicine; veterinary microbiology; veterinary epidemiology; veterinary histology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Histopathology, field that involves examining tissues at a microscopic level, enables researchers to evaluate how various diseases and environmental stressors affect animals.

It involves the microscopic examination of tissues, providing a detailed analysis of cellular changes, lesions and abnormalities. Specifically, regarding wild animals, this method enables researchers to explore the existence of pathogens, evaluate organ damage and identify potential threats to population health.

Molecular histopathology also yields essential data for comprehending the health dynamics of wildlife species in response to emerging threats and environmental changes, playing a pivotal role in informed conservation and management decisions.

Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), quantitative PCR (qPCR), DNA sequencing, reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR), fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) are transformative molecular tools that have revolutionized diagnostics in the field. These techniques play a crucial role in advancing diagnostic capabilities and have significantly enhanced our ability to analyze and understand genetic information.

Understanding the genetic structure is essential for effective conservation strategies, as it helps identify vulnerable populations and assess their resilience to environmental changes. A substantial portion of disease outbreaks are caused by viruses, including influenza A and various strains of Morbillivirus. Following viruses, bacteria represent the second most prevalent contributors to mass die-offs, although these incidents typically exhibit less severity.

This Special Issue welcomes interdisciplinary contributions from biologists, veterinarians, conservationists and geneticists, focusing on wildlife health through histopathology and molecular diagnoses.

Dr. Nakita Câmara
Dr. Eva Sierra
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Animals is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • wildlife
  • histopathology
  • molecular diagnosis

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission, see below for planned papers.

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Photobacterium damselae subsp. damselae in stranded cetaceans: A 6-year monitoring in Ligurian sea -Italy
Authors: Battistini R.; Masotti C.; Giorda F.; Grattarola C.; Peletto S.; Pussini N.; Casalone C.; Serracca L.
Affiliation: Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale del Piemonte, Liguria e Valle d'Aosta - WOAH Collaborating Centre for the Health of Marine Mammals, Turin, Italy
Abstract: Abstract: Photobacterium damselae subsp. damselae (Pdd) is an increasingly common bacterium in post-mortem diagnostics of beached marine mammals, but little is still known about its precise etiological responsibility. To estimate the prevalence of Pdd in stranded cetaceans from 2017 to 2022 in Ligurian coast (Pelagos Sanctuary), we tested tissues from 53 stranded individuals belonging to 4 cetacean species. DNA from cetacean tissue extracts were screened using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay targeting the Pdd enzyme UreasiC gene. Positive samples were screened by PCR for hemolysins genes dly, hlyApl, hlyAch and confirmed by sequencing. Twenty-two cetaceans of the 53 (41.5%) analyzed by PCR gave positivity for pdd DNA in at least one tissue among those analyzed. Five of these cetaceans were positive for at least one of the hemolysin genes tested. In all cetaceans positive to Pdd, other pathogens were also found which in most of the stranded cetaceans studied were considered responsible for the causa mortis of the animals. The data obtained provide new information on the spread of Pdd in cetaceans and would seem to support the thesis according to which Pdd is an opportunistic agent that could contribute to the worsening of health conditions in subjects already compromised by other pathogens, contributing to their death. However, further studies are needed to investigate and deepen this hypothesis.

Title: Detection of Enterocytozoon bieneusi in non-human primates in Portuguese Zoos
Authors: Guilherme Moreira; Andreia V. S. Cruz; Sérgio Santos-Silva; Rafaela São Simão Moreira; João R. Mesquita
Affiliation: 1. Departamento de Clínicas Veterinárias, ICBAS – Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas Abel Salazar, Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal 2. Epidemiology Research Unit (EPIUnit), ISPUP – Instituto de Saúde Pública da Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal 3. Laboratório para a Investigação Integrativa e Translacional em Saúde Populacional (ITR), ISPUP – Instituto de Saúde Pública da Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal
Abstract: Enterocytozoon bieneusi, an intracellular eukaryotic fungus, is recognized as a significant pathogen affecting humans, particularly those with compromised immune systems. While its transmission routes are still not fully elucidated, fecal-oral transmission remains the primary one. With a wide host range, the zoonotic potential of E. bieneusi is a concern, albeit direct evidence of animal-to-human transmission remains scarce. Genotyping based on the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region facilitates the delineation of genetic diversity, with potentially zoonotic genotypes predominantly associated with Groups 1 and 2. Despite the broad spectrum of susceptible mammalian hosts, research into microsporidian infection among zoo animals remains limited. This study aimed to evaluate the occurrence of E. bieneusi infection across diverse captive animals, focusing on zoo settings in Portugal. Fecal samples were collected from a variety of animals, and molecular detection of E. bieneusi was conducted using nested PCR targeting the ITS region. From 127 fecal samples, 1.57% (95% CI: 0.19−5.57) tested positive for E. bieneusi, with non-human primates (NHP’s) exhibiting an 18.18% (95% CI: 2.28−51.78) occurrence. Phylogenetic analysis revealed clustering within Group 2 genotypes, indicating potential zoonotic implications. The study highlights the need for further research to understand the epidemiology of E. bieneusi in zoo environments and its potential transmission pathways to humans.

Back to TopTop