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  • 1 Institute of Debrecen Central Veterinary Institute H-4031 Debrecen Bornemissza u. 3-7 Hungary
  • 2 Central Veterinary Institute Budapest Hungary
  • 3 Animal Health and Food Control Station of Hajdú-Bihar County Debrecen Hungary
  • 4 Debrecen Zoo Debrecen Hungary
  • 5 University of Debrecen Department of Medical Microbiology Debrecen Hungary
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An epizootic of Pacheco’s disease is reported from a zoo bird population. The infection was introduced by wild-captured Patagonian conures ( Cyanoliseus patagonus ) despite 61 days of quarantine. The disease affected several parrot species and, interestingly, three out of seven bearded barbets ( Lybius dubius ). The mortality rate was 30.93%. Autopsy revealed abdominal hyperaemia with liver haemorrhages and, in less rapid cases, yellowish discoloration and fragility of the liver. Death was caused by the collapse of circulation. Histopathology demonstrated liver cell necrosis, disintegration of the lobular structure, and a few intranuclear inclusion bodies. Icosahedral virions were detected by electron microscopy. The virus was isolated in the allantoic cavity of embryonated chicken eggs as well as in chicken embryo fibroblast cell culture. A 281-bp-long fragment of psittacid herpesvirus DNA was detected by PCR in cell culture material and liver samples of the affected birds. To our knowledge this is the first report of Pacheco’s disease in bearded barbets as well as the first occurrence of Pacheco’s disease in Hungary.

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