Neurological changes in fruit bats deficient in vitamin B12

Ralph Green, Susan V. Van Tonder, G. Julien Oettle, Gillian Cole, Jack Metz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


HAEMATOLOGICAL and neurological sequelae are the two major effects of vitamin B12 deficiency in man. In the haemopoietic system, megaloblastic change leading to anaemia seems to be caused by deranged DNA synthesis1. The cause of central nervous system demyelination, however, is unknown and progress in this area has been hampered by the lack of a suitable experimental animal model. We report that Egyptian fruit bats (Rousettus aegyptiacus), made vitamin B12 deficient in captivity, develop neurological changes similar to those observed in human subacute combined degeneration of the spinal cord.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)148-150
Number of pages3
Issue number5496
StatePublished - 1975
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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