Meningoencephalitis due to a Sarcocystis neurona-like protozoan in Pacific harbor seals (Phoca vitulina richardsi)

Jean Martin Lapointe, Padraig J. Duignan, Antoinette E. Marsh, Frances M. Gulland, Bradd C. Barr, Diane K. Naydan, Don P. King, Cindy A. Farman, Kathy A Burek Huntingdon, Linda J Lowenstine

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56 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Seven Pacific harbor seals with meningoencephalitis associated with Sarcocystis neuronalike protozoa are described. Six of the 7 seals were free- ranging and were found stranded over an 80-km stretch of central California coastline; the other was captive. All had marked to severe nonsuppurative meningoencephalitis, most severe in the cerebellar cortex. Immunohistochemistry for S. neurona antigens was positive on brain tissue in all cases, revealing numerous merozoites as well as developing and mature schizonts, including rosette forms. Electron microscopy performed on 3 animals revealed merozoites and schizonts consistent with Sarcocystis sp., with the absence of rhoptries in merozoites, lack of a parasitophorous vacuole around schizonts, and division by endopolygeny. Serology using western blotting revealed the presence of anti-S. neurona immunoglobulins in the sera of 4 of 5 seals tested. Four animals also had a concurrent mild to moderate nonsuppurative myocarditis; in 1 seal, rare sarcocysts of undetermined species were present within cardiomyocytes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1184-1189
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Parasitology
Volume84
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1998

Fingerprint

Phoca
Sarcocystis
Sarcocystis neurona
Schizonts
Merozoites
schizonts
Meningoencephalitis
Phoca vitulina
merozoites
meningoencephalitis
seals
Protozoa
harbor
animal
antigen
electron microscopy
sarcocysts
brain
serum
myocarditis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology

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Meningoencephalitis due to a Sarcocystis neurona-like protozoan in Pacific harbor seals (Phoca vitulina richardsi). / Lapointe, Jean Martin; Duignan, Padraig J.; Marsh, Antoinette E.; Gulland, Frances M.; Barr, Bradd C.; Naydan, Diane K.; King, Don P.; Farman, Cindy A.; Huntingdon, Kathy A Burek; Lowenstine, Linda J.

In: Journal of Parasitology, Vol. 84, No. 6, 1998, p. 1184-1189.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lapointe, JM, Duignan, PJ, Marsh, AE, Gulland, FM, Barr, BC, Naydan, DK, King, DP, Farman, CA, Huntingdon, KAB & Lowenstine, LJ 1998, 'Meningoencephalitis due to a Sarcocystis neurona-like protozoan in Pacific harbor seals (Phoca vitulina richardsi)', Journal of Parasitology, vol. 84, no. 6, pp. 1184-1189. https://doi.org/10.2307/3284670
Lapointe, Jean Martin ; Duignan, Padraig J. ; Marsh, Antoinette E. ; Gulland, Frances M. ; Barr, Bradd C. ; Naydan, Diane K. ; King, Don P. ; Farman, Cindy A. ; Huntingdon, Kathy A Burek ; Lowenstine, Linda J. / Meningoencephalitis due to a Sarcocystis neurona-like protozoan in Pacific harbor seals (Phoca vitulina richardsi). In: Journal of Parasitology. 1998 ; Vol. 84, No. 6. pp. 1184-1189.
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