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See detailThe carriage of larval Echinococcus multilocularis and other cestodes by the musk rat (Ondatra zibethicus) along the Ourthe river and its tributaries (Belgium)
Mathy, Anne ULg; Hanosset, Régis; Adant, S. et al

in Journal of Wildlife Diseases (2009), 45

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See detailHarbour porpoise thyroids: Histological investigations and potential interactions with environmental factors
Schnitzler, Joseph ULg; Siebert, Ursula; Jepson, Paul et al

in Journal of Wildlife Diseases (2008), 44

The thyroid plays an important role in development and is of primary importance in metabolism and heat loss for cetaceans, including the harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). Several studies have ... [more ▼]

The thyroid plays an important role in development and is of primary importance in metabolism and heat loss for cetaceans, including the harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). Several studies have demonstrated that environmental contaminants can alter various aspects of thyroid function in mammals and may contribute to various histologic changes. The present study completes the data set of a 2006 study by Das et al., by performing histological and immunohistologic investigations on thyroids of 36 harbor porpoises from Belgian and United Kingdom waters. The number and mean diameter of follicles (µm) and the relative proportion of follicular, connective, and vascular tissue (%) were quantified in the thyroid gland of each individual. Interfollicular fibrosis has been observed in these thyroid glands, and the collective findings support the hypothesis of an endocrine disruption of thyroid function through organochlorinated compounds. Our study aimed also to reveal potential relationships between thyroid morphometric data and metal levels (Cd, Fe, Zn, Cu, Se, and Hg) using multivariate statistical analysis. The multiple regressions revealed statistically significant relationships between trace elements (cadmium, selenium, and copper) and thyroid fibrosis. The largely negative relationships are interesting findings but do not support the hypothesis that these elements have an adverse effect on thyroid morphometry. Further research is needed to understand the nature of any relationship between organochlorine and trace element exposure and thyroid gland morphology and function in harbor porpoises. [less ▲]

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See detailPostmortem Investigations on Winter Stranded Sperm Whales from the Coasts of Belgium and the Netherlands
Jauniaux, Thierry ULg; Brosens, L.; Jacquinet, E. et al

in Journal of Wildlife Diseases (1998), 34(1), 99-109

During winter 1994-95, four and three sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) were stranded along the Belgian and the Dutch coasts, respectively. Necropsies and tissue samplings were collected 24 hrs post ... [more ▼]

During winter 1994-95, four and three sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) were stranded along the Belgian and the Dutch coasts, respectively. Necropsies and tissue samplings were collected 24 hrs post mortem. Lesions on several whales included round and linear skin scars, ventral skin abrasions, acute skin ulcers, acute ulcerative stomatitides, acute to chronic external otitides, and passive visceral congestion. In addition, these sperm whales appeared to be debilitated with severe weight deficit, had blubber thickness reduction, the absence of abdominal fat, and the intestinal tracts were almost empty. Three categories of lesions and their possible relation with the stranding were evaluated. Cutaneous scars observed on the seven whales appeared to have no relation with the stranding. The poor body condition and acute integument ulcerative lesions were present before the stranding. Ventral skin abrasions and visceral passive congestion were caused by the strandings. Absence of food in the alimentary tracts, evidence of weight loss and blubber thickness reduction were compatible with an extended presence of the sperm whales in the North Sea, where adequate food is not available. This might lead to progressive weakness, predisposing the animals to secondary pathogens such as viral diseases. Finally, the coastal configuration of the southern North Sea makes it a trap for sperm whales which have entered the area during their wanderings. [less ▲]

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See detailSerological survey of herpesvirus infections in wild ruminants of France and Belgium.
Thiry, Etienne ULg; Vercouter, M.; Dubuisson, J. et al

in Journal of Wildlife Diseases (1988), 24(2), 268-73

The presence of antibodies against bovine herpesvirus 1 (BHV-1), bovid herpesvirus 6 (BHV-6), herpesvirus of Cervidae type 1 (HVC-1), reindeer herpesvirus, bovine herpesvirus 2 (BHV-2) and bovid ... [more ▼]

The presence of antibodies against bovine herpesvirus 1 (BHV-1), bovid herpesvirus 6 (BHV-6), herpesvirus of Cervidae type 1 (HVC-1), reindeer herpesvirus, bovine herpesvirus 2 (BHV-2) and bovid herpesvirus 4 (BHV-4) was investigated in wild ruminants of France and Belgium between 1981 and 1986. There were no animals serologically positive for BHV-4. Antibodies against BHV-2 were demonstrated in roe deer (Cervus capreolus) (less than 1%) and chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra) (1%) in France. Animals seropositive to the four related viruses (BHV-1, BHV-6, HVC-1, reindeer herpesvirus) were detected in red deer (Cervus elaphus) in France and Belgium (1% and 11%, respectively), in roe deer (less than 1%) from France, in chamois (4%) in France and in ibex (Capra ibex) (4%) from France. The presence of antibodies against HVC-1, especially in red deer from Belgium, may suggest that wild ruminants in continental Europe are now infected with this virus, which previously has been isolated only in Scotland. [less ▲]

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