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Cerebellar parenchymal degeneration

Porcine circovirus type 2-associated cerebellar vasculitis in postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS)-affected pigs.
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Porcine circovirus type 2-associated cerebellar vasculitis in postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS)-affected pigs.

Vet Pathol. 2007 Sep;44(5):621-34

Authors: Seeliger FA, Brügmann ML, Krüger L, Greiser-Wilke I, Verspohl J, Segalés J, Baumgärtner W

Abstract
Porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) is associated with several syndromes in growing pigs, including postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome and porcine dermatitis and nephropathy syndrome. In the present study, a previously undescribed neurovascular disorder associated with a PCV2 infection is described. Sixteen pigs showed clinical signs of wasting and neurologic deficits. Acute hemorrhages and edema of cerebellar meninges and parenchyma due to a necrotizing vasculitis resulted in degeneration and necrosis of the gray and white matter. Few to numerous PCV2 DNA and antigen-bearing endothelial cells were detected in affected areas of the brain using in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. Conventional histochemical stains, as well as the detection of caspase 3 activity and DNA strand breaks by the terminal transferase dUTP nick end labeling assay, showed numerous apoptotic endothelial cells in the vascular lesions observed. Sequencing of various brain-derived PCV2-specific amplicons revealed a strong identity between different isolates and an 89 to 100% identity to previous isolates. The phylogenetic tree showed that there was no clustering of isolates correlating to clinical signs or geographic distribution. This previously undescribed PCV2-associated neurologic disease has features of both postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome and, to a lesser extent, porcine dermatitis and nephropathy syndrome. The available evidence suggests that direct virus-induced apoptosis of endothelial cells plays a role in the pathogenesis of this unusual PCV2-associated cerebellar vasculitis.

PMID: 17846234 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]