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A multiple simple adenoma causing severe distortion of the tail base was identified in the cloacal scent gland of a female California Kingsnake (Lampropeltis getulus californiae). In addition to the normal epithelial layer of the gland and the skin, the tumour cells in the glandular epithelium also showed cross immunereactivity with humanised anti-cytokeratin antibody. This is the first description of an adenoma in the scent gland of a reptile species. Neither epithelial nor mesenchymal tumours arising from the scent gland of reptiles have been reported previously. This report also highlights the possible use of humanised antibodies on reptile species for the fast, reliable and specific differential diagnosis of tumours.

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The authors describe a solitary adenoma in a 5.5-year-old female Budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus). The tumour was partially blocking the lumen of the proventriculus and filled it almost completely. Decreased passage of food towards the gizzard and the intestines developed in the bird as result of the obstruction, which periodically hindered the passage, leading to slow emaciation. An epithelial tumour composed of irregular glandular acini was diagnosed by histological examination. Immunohistochemical reaction with pancytokeratin showed a positive cytoplasmic reaction both in the neoplastic and the normal glandular structures.

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A heterotopic in situ complex adenocarcinoma developing on the hindlimb is reported for the first time from an Asian Leaf Turtle (Cyclemys dentata). The tumour mechanically hampered the movement of the animal. The turtle refused to eat and consequently developed a poor condition. Histopathology of the tumour revealed all characteristics of a well-differentiated adenocarcinoma originating from apocrine gland-like tissue: the irregular, tubular structures varying in size were generally lined by two to four layers of cuboidal to columnar neoplastic epithelial cells. Claudin-5, pancytokeratin, cytokeratin, vimentin, α-SMA and Ki-67 immunohistochemical antibodies were employed for characterising the tumour. The diagnosis was a complex adenocarcinoma originating from apocrine gland-like tissue in a turtle.

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The authors describe a case of synchronously occurring (double) tumours, i.e. primary hepatocellular carcinoma and aortic body chemodectoma in a 14-year-old mixed-breed male dog. The tumours were identified during necropsy, following euthanasia. In the last months of its life, the dog showed signs of weakness, anorexia, apathy, inactivity, and abdominal palpation elicited a painful reaction. The primary liver cancer emerged in the left lateral lobe without evidence of any distant metastases. Histopathological and immunohistochemical investigations revealed a well-differentiated, trabecular, claudin-7-, claudin-5- and pancytokeratin-negative hepatocellular carcinoma. The Ki-67 proliferation index was 33%. During necropsy, a synchronously occurring benign, grade I type aortic body chemodectoma was also detected in the dog. This neuroendocrine tumour showed chromogranin-, synaptophysin-, neuron-specific enolase- and S100 protein-positivity, and the Ki-67 proliferation index was 2%. The authors believe that this is the first description of synchronously occurring hepatocellular carcinoma and aortic body chemodectoma in a dog.

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Authors: Míra Mándoki, M. Dobos-Kovács, T. Bakonyi and M. Rusvai

Kidney samples from chickens diagnosed with acute nephritis and gout were subjected to histological and electron microscopic examination. The investigations revealed cytoplasmic inclusion bodies in the tubular epithelial cells containing round virions of about 30 nm in diameter. Since avian nephritis virus (ANV) is known as a potential causative agent of the so-called baby chick nephropathy, an RT-PCR assay was developed for the molecular detection of ANV-specific nucleic acid in the specimen. The specificity of the assay was confirmed by direct sequencing of the amplicon obtained in the reaction. The nucleotide sequence of the PCR product showed 92% identity with the reference ANV sequence deposited in the GenBank database. After having been validated on some other suspicious cases of avian nephritis, the PCR method described in this study can be a potential tool for routine diagnostic examination of samples submitted from cases of gout and nephropathy in chickens.

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Authors: Elena Palade, Nóra Biró, Mihály Dobos-Kovács, Zoltán Demeter, Míra Mándoki and Miklós Rusvai

From a total of 1819 great tits ( Parus major ) ringed in 2007 in Pilis Mountains, Hungary, 15 birds presented nodular proliferative lesions on different areas of the head and eyelids, suggesting a poxvirus infection. Three birds were submitted for analysis. The presence of avipoxvirus infection was confirmed by histopathology, electron microscopy (EM) and a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based technique. Nucleotide sequence analysis of a 428 base pairs (bp) fragment of the viral 4b core protein gene revealed 100% identity between two of the Hungarian isolates (PM9 HUN, PM33 HUN) and two great tit poxvirus strains isolated in Norway in 1973 (GTV A256, GTV A311). The third Hungarian isolate (PM34 HUN) was more closely related to a different Norwegian isolate (GTVA310) than to the Hungarian isolates. The nucleotide sequence analysis of a shorter fragment of the viral 4b core protein (227 bp) gene revealed 100% identity between the Hungarian isolates, the same Norwegian isolates and a great tit poxvirus strain detected in Austria in 2007.

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Authors: János Gál, Míra Mándoki, Endre Sós, Péter Kertész, Viktória Koroknai, Krisztián Bányai and Szilvia L. Farkas

A male kowari (Dasyuroides byrnei) originating from a zoo facility was delivered for post mortem evaluation in Hungary. Acute lobar pneumonia with histopathologic changes resembling an adenovirus (AdV) infection was detected by light microscopic examination. The presence of an AdV was confirmed by obtaining partial sequence data from the adenoviral DNA-dependent DNA-polymerase. Although the exact taxonomic position of this novel marsupial origin virus could not be determined, pairwise identity analyses and phylogenetic calculations revealed that it is distantly related to other members in the family Adenoviridae.

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Authors: Csaba Kővágó, Petra Forgách, Ágnes Szabára, Míra Mándoki, Ákos Hornyák, Conor Duignan, Erzsébet Pásztiné Gere and Miklós Rusvai

Bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) is a viral disease appearing in various forms and causing high economic losses in the cattle stocks of Hungary. The aim of the present study was to determine the prevalence of bovine viral diarrhoea virus (BVDV) in Hungary through a monitoring survey carried out on samples collected in cattle-keeping units throughout the country. Since no such survey had been carried out in Hungary during the last thirty years, our study may serve as a basis for later monitoring investigations aimed at following the progress of an expected eradication campaign of BVD. The tests were carried out using an ELISA method, on a total of 1200 blood samples submitted from 54 cattle herds. The herds had not been vaccinated against BVDV before the sampling. Out of the 1200 samples, 521 proved to be positive (43.4%), 40 gave doubtful result (3.3%) and 639 were negative (53.3%). In some stocks the samples were collected from cows having completed several lactation periods, and therefore the seronegativity indicates the BVDV-free status of the given stock. Moreover, among the positive herds we found a few where the seropositivity rate was rather low (< 5%). According to the results of the survey, a rather high portion (about one third) of the cattle-keeping units of Hungary can be regarded as BVDV free, which ratio is much higher than had been expected on the basis of surveys carried out on a lower number of samples and in smaller regions of the country. Hence, the chances of an eradication campaign launched in the near future, or carried out parallel to the IBR eradication programme, are better than previously expected.

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Authors: János Gál, Csaba Jakab, Zoltán Szabó, Péter Pazár, Roland Psáder, Florian Roeber, Árpád Hegyi, Kinga Lefler, Balázs Farkas and Míra Mándoki

A haemangioma developing in the wall of the oesophagus and protruding into its cavity is reported for the first time from a Red-eared Slider ( Trachemys scripta elegans ). As the tumour mechanically hampered swallowing, the animal was unable to eat and consequently developed a poor condition. Histopathology of the tumour revealed all characteristics of a haemangioma: the blood-filled blood-vessels having an irregular cross-section were lined with endothelial cells. Claudin-5 immunohistochemical antibodies were employed for characterising the tumour, and this examination confirmed our initial diagnosis of a haemangioma.

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Authors: József Lehel, János Gál, Sándor Faragó, Erzsébet Berta, Emese Andrásofszky, Sándor Fekete, Míra Mándoki, Péter Budai, Éva Kormos and Miklós Marosán

Mercury and lead concentrations were measured in the livers of cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis), an aquatic bird species living and nesting in the special, highly protected nature conservation area of Kis-Balaton, Hungary. The measurements of metal concentrations were performed by atomic absorption spectrometry using the cold vapour method for mercury and the electrothermal method for lead. Mercury concentrations in the livers were significantly higher in the adult population (4.479 ± 3.336 mg/kg dry matter, DM) than in the juvenile birds (2.682 ± 2.087 mg/kg DM), indicating an increase of bioaccumulation with age. A similar pattern was not observed for lead. There were no statistical differences between males and females either in mercury or in lead concentrations. The average levels of mercury (3.580 ± 2.906 mg/kg DM) and lead (0.746 ± 0.499 mg/kg DM) were statistically different in the liver. No correlation was found between the concentrations of the two heavy metals. Recently, the wild birds have been chronically exposed to subtoxic amounts of metals which have a tendency to accumulate especially in the soft tissues.

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