Livers from 54 snow leopards, 4 days to 23 years old, that had died in 23 US zoos, were evaluated histopathologically to determine if the hepatic fibrosis, which has been noted to be prevalent in this species, was due to chronic active hepatitis from hepadnaviral infection, Ito cell proliferation, or hemosiderosis. Forty-two of 54 snow leopards had subintimal vascular fibrosis with partial or total occlusion of central and sublobular veins (veno-occlusive disease) of unknown origin. All 21 leopards older than 5 years were affected. Four leopards had chronic active hepatitis, and 12 leopards had cholangiohepatitis; but these lesions were not connected anatomically to central and sublobular venous fibrosis. Hepatocellular and Kupffer cell siderosis and Ito cell proliferation were prevalent and often coexisted with perisinusoidal, central, and sublobular venous fibrosis; but fibrosis was present in leopards without siderosis or Ito cell proliferation. The pattern and prevalence of veno-occlusive disease in these leopards was similar to that reported in captive cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), suggesting that a common extrinsic factor may cause the majority of hepatic disease in these large felid animals in captivity.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|State||Published - Jan 1991|
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