Stiftung Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover (TiHo)TiHo eLib

The association of Equine Parvovirus-Hepatitis (EqPV-H) with cases of non-biologic-associated Theiler’s disease on a farm in Ontario, Canada

Theiler’s disease was confirmed within a group horses located on a farm in southwestern Ontario during the summer and autumn of 2005. Five sudden deaths occurred between 3 July and 21 August, 2005, none of which were necropsied, however two of the horses showed clinical signs compatible with hepatic encephalopathy prior to death. No horse on the farm had received a biologic product of equine blood origin in the preceding six months. The only biologics used on the property were the administration of killed vaccines for rabies, tetanus and West Nile Virus to all horses 30 days prior to the onset of the first sudden death. Between 22 August, 2005 and 21 October, 2005, a further four horses died suddenly or were euthanized with all having a confirmed histopathologic diagnosis of acute hepatic necrosis. Serum was collected from all horses on the farm on 30 September, 2005 and this was repeated on 29 October, 2005. Equine parvovirus-hepatitis (EqPV-H) DNA was detected by quantitative-PCR in the serum of 61.8% (34/55) of the horses on the farm on either one or both sampling dates with viral loads ranging from <3.75 × 103 copies/mL to 3.64 × 107 copies/mL. EqPV-H DNA was present in serum samples of three horses with a confirmed diagnosis of Theiler’s disease, five horses with subclinical liver disease, and in clinically normal in-contact horses. Subsequent phylogenetic analysis based on partial NS1 of EqPV-H revealed not only high similarity on nucleotide level within the sequenced samples but also within other previously published sequences.

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