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1.  Analysis of Prostate-Specific Antigen Transcripts in Chimpanzees, Cynomolgus Monkeys, Baboons, and African Green Monkeys 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e94522.
The function of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is to liquefy the semen coagulum so that the released sperm can fuse with the ovum. Fifteen spliced variants of the PSA gene have been reported in humans, but little is known about alternative splicing in nonhuman primates. Positive selection has been reported in sex- and reproductive-related genes from sea urchins to Drosophila to humans; however, there are few studies of adaptive evolution of the PSA gene. Here, using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) product cloning and sequencing, we study PSA transcript variant heterogeneity in the prostates of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis), baboons (Papio hamadryas anubis), and African green monkeys (Chlorocebus aethiops). Six PSA variants were identified in the chimpanzee prostate, but only two variants were found in cynomolgus monkeys, baboons, and African green monkeys. In the chimpanzee the full-length transcript is expressed at the same magnitude as the transcripts that retain intron 3. We have found previously unidentified splice variants of the PSA gene, some of which might be linked to disease conditions. Selection on the PSA gene was studied in 11 primate species by computational methods using the sequences reported here for African green monkey, cynomolgus monkey, baboon, and chimpanzee and other sequences available in public databases. A codon-based analysis (dN/dS) of the PSA gene identified potential adaptive evolution at five residue sites (Arg45, Lys70, Gln144, Pro189, and Thr203).
PMCID: PMC3986117  PMID: 24732672
2.  Pathology of spontaneous air sacculitis in 37 baboons and 7 chimpanzees and a brief review of the literature 
Journal of Medical Primatology  2012;41(4):266-277.
Air sacculitis is an important clinical condition in non-human primates.
We evaluated 37 baboons and 7 chimpanzees with spontaneous air sacculitis submitted to pathology over a 20 year period.
Air sacculitis was observed almost exclusively in males. Common reported signs were halitosis, coughing, nasal discharges, depression, anorexia, and weight loss. Gross lesions included thickened air sacs and suppurative exudate lining the walls. Microscopic lesions included marked epithelial hyperplasia or hypertrophy, necrosis, fibrosis, cellular infiltrates, and bacterial colonies. Mixed bacterial infections were more common than infections by single species of bacteria. Streptococcus sp. was the most frequent bacteria isolated in both baboons and chimpanzees.
This is the first report describing the gross and microscopic lesions of air sacculitis in chimpanzees. The preponderance of males suggests a male sex predilection in baboons.
PMCID: PMC3402580  PMID: 22765381
Air sac; Airsacculitis; Pan; Papio; Non-human primate
3.  The Length of the Barrett's Mucosa in Baboons, Revisited 
Anticancer research  2012;32(8):3115-3118.
Chewing of regurgitated food with rumination elicits, gastroesophageal reflux (GER) in baboons. Protracted reflux transforms the distal multilayered squamous cell-lined epithelium into columnar-lined mucosa, with mucus-producing glands having interspersed oxyntic glands. In humans, this histological constellation is called Barrett's mucosa type 2 (BMT2).
Materials and Methods
The distal esophagus together with the proximal stomach was removed en bloc, at autopsy, from 35 adult baboons. Longitudinal sections were stained with toluidine blue, a stain that permits easy discrimination between parietal and chief gastric glands. Using a calibrated ocular scale, the length of the BMT2 was assessed in all 35 baboons.
The mean length of the BMT2 was 9.80 mm (range 1.0 mm–40.2 mm).
BMT2 in baboons is an integrated part of the natural phenomenon of mucosal adaptation to daily regurgitation of gastric acid into the distal esophagus (natural GER), whereas BMT2 in humans might reflect an evolutionary atavism in the esophagus, triggered by a non-physiological disorder (pathological GER). The baboon offers a suitable model to monitor the series of histological events that take place in the distal esophagus under the influence of protracted GER.
PMCID: PMC3468325  PMID: 22843881
Barrett's mucosa; esophagus; baboon; reflux; mucus; metaplasia
4.  The Ontogeny of the Endocrine Pancreas in the Fetal/Newborn Baboon 
The Journal of endocrinology  2012;214(3):289-299.
Erratic regulation of glucose metabolism including hyperglycemia is a common condition of premature infants and is associated with increased morbidity and mortality.
To examine histological and ultra-structural differences in the endocrine pancreas in fetal (throughout gestation) and neonatal baboons.
Twelve fetal baboons were delivered at 125 days (d) gestational age (GA), 140dGA, or 175dGA. Eight animals were delivered at term (185dGA); half were fed for 5d. Seventy-three non-diabetic adult baboons were used for comparison. Pancreatic tissue was studied utilizing light microscopy, confocal imaging and electron microscopy.
The fetal and neonatal endocrine pancreas islet architecture became more organized as GA advanced. The percent areas of α-β-δ-cell type were similar within each fetal and newborn GA (NS), but were higher than the adults (P<0.05) regardless of GA. The ratio of β-cells within the islet (whole and core) increased with gestation (P<0.01). Neonatal baboons who survived for 5 days (feeding), had a 2.5-fold increase in pancreas weight compared to their counterparts euthanized at birth (P=0.01). Endocrine cells were found amongst exocrine ductal and acinar cells in 125,140 and 175dGA fetuses. Subpopulation of cells that co-expressed trypsin and glucagon/insulin show the presence of cells with mixed endo-exocrine lineage in fetuses.
The fetal endocrine pancreas has no prevalence of a of α-β-δ-cell type with larger endocrine cell percent areas than adults. Cells with mixed endocrine/exocrine phenotype occur during fetal development. Developmental differences may play a role in glucose homeostasis during the neonatal period and may have long term implications.
PMCID: PMC3686495  PMID: 22723715
Insulin; glucagon; fetus; islet cells; primates
5.  Craniorachischisis and Omphalocele in a Stillborn Cynomolgus Monkey (Macaca fascicularis) 
Nonhuman primates have been a common animal model to evaluate experimentally-induced malformations. Reports on spontaneous malformations are important in determining the background incidence of congenital anomalies in specific species and in evaluating experimental results. Here we report on a stillborn cynomolgus monkey (Macaca fascicularis) with multiple congenital anomalies from the colony maintained at the Southwest National Primate Research Center at the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research, San Antonio, Texas. Physical findings included low birth weight, craniorachischisis, facial abnormalities, omphalocele, malrotation of the gut with areas of atresia and intussusception, a Meckel diverticulum, arthrogryposis, patent ductus arteriosus, and patent foramen ovale. The macaque had normal male external genitalia, but undescended testes. Gestational age was unknown but was estimated from measurements of the limbs and other developmental criteria. Although cytogenetic analysis was not possible due to the tissues being in an advanced state of decomposition, array Comparative Genomic Hybridization analysis using human bacterial artificial chromosome clones was successful in effectively eliminating aneuploidy or any copy number changes greater than approximately 3–5 Mb as a cause of the malformations. Further evaluation of the animal included extensive imaging of the skeletal and neural tissue defects. The animal’s congenital anomalies are discussed in relation to the current hypotheses attempting to explain the frequent association of neural tube defects with other abnormalities.
PMCID: PMC3678351  PMID: 21567905
neural tube defects; schisis association; macaque; cynomolgus monkey; non-human primate; congenital defects; malformations
6.  A Novel Adenovirus Species Associated with an Acute Respiratory Outbreak in a Baboon Colony and Evidence of Coincident Human Infection 
mBio  2013;4(2):e00084-13.
Adenoviruses (AdVs) are DNA viruses that infect many vertebrate hosts, including humans and nonhuman primates. Here we identify a novel AdV species, provisionally named “simian adenovirus C (SAdV-C),” associated with a 1997 outbreak of acute respiratory illness in captive baboons (4 of 9) at a primate research facility in Texas. None of the six AdVs recovered from baboons (BaAdVs) during the outbreak, including the two baboons who died from pneumonia, were typeable. Since clinical samples from the two fatal cases were not available, whole-genome sequencing of nasal isolates from one sick baboon and three asymptomatic baboons during the outbreak was performed. Three AdVs were members of species SAdV-C (BaAdV-2 and BaAdV-4 were genetically identical, and BaAdV-3), while one (BaAdV-1) was a member of the recently described SAdV-B species. BaAdV-3 was the only AdV among the 4 isolated from a sick baboon, and thus was deemed to be the cause of the outbreak. Significant divergence (<58% amino acid identity) was found in one of the fiber proteins of BaAdV-3 relative to BaAdV-2 and -4, suggesting that BaAdV-3 may be a rare SAdV-C recombinant. Neutralizing antibodies to the other 3 AdVs, but not BaAdV-3, were detected in healthy baboons from 1996 to 2003 and staff personnel from 1997. These results implicate a novel adenovirus species (SAdV-C) in an acute respiratory outbreak in a baboon colony and underscore the potential for cross-species transmission of AdVs between humans and nonhuman primates.
Adenoviruses (AdVs) are DNA viruses that infect many animals, including humans and monkeys. In 1997, an outbreak of acute respiratory illness from AdVs occurred in a baboon colony in Texas. Here we use whole-genome sequencing and antibody testing to investigate new AdVs in baboons (BaAdVs) during the outbreak, one of which, BaAdV-3, came from a sick animal. By sequence analysis, BaAdV-3 may be a recombinant strain that arose from a related BaAdV found in baboons nearby in the colony (who were not sick) and yet another unknown AdV. We also found antibodies to these new BaAdVs in baboons and staff personnel at the facility. Taken together, our findings of a new AdV species as the cause of an acute respiratory outbreak in a baboon colony underscore the ongoing threat from emerging viruses that may carry the potential for cross-species transmission between monkeys and humans.
PMCID: PMC3634605  PMID: 23592261
7.  Serum prostate specific antigen changes in cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) on a high sugar high fat diet 
The Prostate  2011;72(5):469-475.
An inverse relationship between serum prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels and body mass index (BMI) has been reported in men but not in any animal model.
Serum PSA in a colony of cynomolgus monkeys was assayed and correlated to body weight, prostate weight and age. In addition 15 animals were selected and fed a high sugar high fat (HSHF) diet for 49 weeks to increase their BMI and correlate it to PSA
Serum PSA levels were positively correlated to prostate weight (r=0.515, p=0.025) and age (r=0.548, p=0.00072) but was not significantly correlated to body weight (r=−0.032, p=0.419). For the animals on the HSHF diet, body weight, lean mass, fat mass and BMI were significantly higher at 49 weeks than at baseline (p<0.01). PSA was not significantly correlated to body weight and insulin at both baseline and 49 weeks. PSA was negatively correlated to BMI and insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) at 49 weeks but not at baseline. In addition we observed hepatic steatosis and increases in serum liver enzymes.
Increases in BMI in cynomolgus monkeys as a result of consuming a HSHF diet resulted in PSA changes similar to those in humans with increased BMI. Cynomolgus monkeys are a useful model for investigating the relationship between obesity, diabetes and PSA changes resulting from prostate gland pathology.
PMCID: PMC3184308  PMID: 21713965
Diabetes; insulin resistance; BMI
8.  Spontaneous Pathology of the Baboon Endocrine System 
Journal of medical primatology  2009;38(6):383-389.
Study of endocrine pathology in animal models is critical to understanding endocrine pathology in humans.
We evaluated 434 endocrine-related diagnoses from 4,619 baboon necropsies, established the incidence of spontaneous endocrine pathology, and analyzed the clinical and biochemical data associated with the individual cases.
The most common diagnoses in descending order, were pancreatic islet cell amyloidosis (n=259), ovarian cysts (n=50), pituitary adenoma (n=37), pancreatic islet cell adenoma (n=20), granulosa cell tumor (n=15), thyroid adenoma (n=11), adrenal hyperplasia (n=10), thyroid carcinoma (n=8), and pheochromocytoma (n=6). The incidence of pancreatic islet cell amyloidosis progressively increased with age. Pheochromocytomas were associated with renal and heart failure. The incidence of pancreatic islet cell amyloidosis and adrenal pathology was similar to humans; the incidence of pituitary adenoma and thyroid pathology was lower than in humans.
Endocrine disease in baboons is common and shares clinical and biochemical characteristics with endocrine disease in humans.
PMCID: PMC2783813  PMID: 19793179
Papio; nonhuman primate; thyroid; pancreas; endocrine; disease; cancer
9.  Myxomatous neoplasms in the perineal region of baboons 
Journal of medical primatology  2008;37(6):261-270.
In baboons, Papio sp. neoplasms tend to affect the hematopoietic system most commonly, with rare documentation of myxomatous neoplasms. In contrast, women can develop myxomatous masses within deep peripelvic tissues with some frequency during their reproductive years.
We have identified and examined, retrospectively, myxomatous perineal masses in twelve female baboons within one research facility and compared their histopathologic, immunohistochemical and electron microscopic features to their human variants.
Our results indicate that these myxomatous neoplasms, in humans and non-human primates, share common features.
Further research, particularly molecular genetic analysis, may be needed to identify the baboon as a true animal model for myxomatous perineal neoplasms.
PMCID: PMC3482000  PMID: 19017193
Aggressive angiomyxoma; angiomyofibroblastoma; cdk4; estrogen receptor; MDM2; progesterone receptor
10.  The Prevalence of Colonic Amyloidosis in Baboons. A 22-year Survey at a Large Primate Facility 
In vivo (Athens, Greece)  2008;22(6):725-727.
Colonic amyloidosis has been previously reported in animals, however its prevalence rate has not yet been explored. The aim of the present work was to assess the prevalence of colonic amyloidosis at the Southwest National Primate Research Center since 1986.
Materials and Methods
Colonic amyloidosis was sought in autopsy material from baboons collected under the diagnosis of systemic amyloidosis.
Between 1986 and 2007, a mean of 3,315 baboons per year (range 2,578–3,931) were housed at the Southwest National Primate Research Center. After examination, colonic amyloidosis was detected in 6 (6.8% ) of the 88 baboons with systemic amyloidosis, yielding a prevalence rate of 0.27 cases per year since 1986. Colonic amyloid deposits were found in the interstitial aspect of the lamina propria, often replacing normal mucosal crypts of Lieberkuhn.
It was observed that only 6.8% of animals with systemic amyloidosis examined between 1986 and 2007 developed colonic amyloidosis. The apparent natural resistance to colonic amyloidosis in baboons presenting systemic amyloidosis deserves to be further investigated.
PMCID: PMC3479647  PMID: 19180998
Amyloidosis; colon; baboon
11.  The Columnar-lined Mucosa in the Distal Esophagus. A Preliminary Study in Baboons 
In vivo (Athens, Greece)  2009;23(2):273-275.
For anatomists, the cardia is a portion of the stomach. However, at the histological level, the cardiac mucosa, described as columnar-lined with mucus-producing glands (CLMMG), is for some pathologists part of the stomach (already present at birth) and for others a metaplastic change of the esophagus induced by gastro-esophageal reflux (GER).
Materials and Methods
The distal esophagus and the proximal stomach of 5 adult male baboons were removed en bloc at autopsy. The distance between the most distal part of the squamous epithelium of the esophagus and the first oxyntic fundic gastric gland (representing the entire CLMMG) was assessed using an ocular microscale.
The length of the CLMMG varied from 1.2 mm to 12.4 mm. The CLMMG had replaced the squamous epithelium of the distal esophagus in all 5 baboons.
Regurgitation with rumination is a natural physiological, daily, recurrent process in baboons that leads to GER. The luminal cytoplasmic vacuoles with neutral mucins contained in the columnar cells and the neutral mucins produced by the mucin glands buffer the low pH of the gastric juices that reflux into the distal esophagus. This protective action against the acid refluxate cannot be achieved by the squamous epithelium.
The results of this preliminary investigation suggest that in baboons, CLMMG is an adaptation process of the esophageal mucosal to the low pH microenvironment conveyed by protracted GER.
PMCID: PMC3479648  PMID: 19414413
Metaplasia; esophagus; reflux; baboons
12.  Spontaneous pathology of the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) and tamarins (Saguinus oedipus, Saguinus mystax) 
Journal of medical primatology  2009;38(5):347-359.
Marmosets and tamarins are increasingly used in research, but their pathology remains poorly defined compared to old world primates.
Necropsy records of 129 marmosets and 52 tamarins were reviewed; none were used experimentally.
The most common marmoset lesions were dehydration, emaciation, nephritis, colitis and inanition. The most common tamarin lesions were dehydration, ascites, emaciation and congestive heart failure. Colitis and heart disease were the most common cause of death in marmosets and tamarins, respectively. Immature marmoset and tamarin deaths often occurred within the first month of life. Immature marmosets usually died from inanition, stillbirth and colitis; immature tamarins from atelectasis, stillbirth, heart failure and colitis. Lymphoma was the most common neoplasm for both marmosets and tamarins.
The findings were similar to prior reports with differences in frequency and severity. We report the first case of endometriosis in a marmoset.
PMCID: PMC2740810  PMID: 19522731
nonhuman primate; Callitrichidae; disease; epidemiology; cancer
13.  Trichobezoars in baboons 
Journal of medical primatology  2009;38(5):302-309.
There is little information available concerning trichobezoars in the nonhuman primate literature.
We evaluated 118 cases of trichobezoar in baboons over a 29 year period at the Southwest National Primate Research Center.
The anatomic locations affected in decreasing order were the stomach, small intestine, cecum, esophagus, and colon. The most common clinical history was weight loss. The most frequent associated pathology included gastrointestinal inflammation and ulceration, emaciation, peritonitis, intussusception, pneumonia, and aspiration. Trichobezoars were the cause of death in 9 baboons and the reason for euthanasia in 12. Females were 2.14 times more likely than males to be affected. The greater the percentage of group housing time, the more likely the baboon was to develop trichobezoars.
The baboon may present a useful model to evaluate the etiology, genetic predisposition, physiopathology, neurobiology, and treatment response of trichobezoars.
PMCID: PMC2754115  PMID: 19457157
Stomach; hairball; trichophagia; trichotillomania; hair pulling; nonhuman primate; Papio
14.  The Frequency of Gastric Amyloidosis in Baboons. A 22-year Survey at a Large Primate Facility 
In vivo (Athens, Greece)  2008;22(6):663-665.
Systemic amyloidosis, caused by abnormal tissue accretion of plasma proteins, affects several organs of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Gastric amyloidosis, rare in humans, has only been reported once in animals.
Materials and Methods
Gastric amyloidosis was sought for in baboons with systemic amyloidosis.
During the past 22 years (between January 1986 and January 2007) a mean of 3,315 baboons/year (range 2,578–3,931) were housed at the Southwest National Primate Research Center. Gastric amyloidosis was found in 9 (10.2%) of the 88 baboons having a diagnosis of systemic amyloidosis. Consequently, the prevalence of gastric amyloidosis occurring since 1986 at this facility was 0.41 baboons/year. Gastric amyloid deposits were found in the interstitial aspect of the lamina propria, replacing normal mucosal structures, in the submucosal stroma along the interface with the muscularis mucosae and in the interstitial tissue of submucosal lymphoid aggregates. In one of the animals, lumps of amyloid deposits with giant cells were found in the gastric mucosa.
Baboons with systemic amyloidosis usually show increasing frequency of amyloid deposits in the liver, large intestine, lymph nodes, spleen and the small intestine. We now demonstrate that it may also involve the stomach. Why certain organs of the GI tract in baboons are more susceptible than others to be affected by the process of systemic amyloidosis remains unexplained. The apparent natural resistance of the stomach of baboons to be affected by systemic amyloidosis deserves further investigation. The review of the literature indicates that this is only the second report on gastric amyloidosis in baboons.
PMCID: PMC3468905  PMID: 19180988
Amyloidosis; stomach; baboons
15.  The Frequency of Histological Features Mimicking Reflux Esophagitis: A Study in Non-human Primates 
In vivo (Athens, Greece)  2008;22(6):721-724.
The frequency of histological changes mimicking those described for reflux esophagitis in humans was assessed in a cohort of non-human primates (NHP).
Materials and Methods
A total of 121 consecutive esophagi (from 103 baboons and 18 macaques) were classified according to Ismail-Beiji for reflux esophagitis in humans into grade 1, grade 2 and grade 3 esophagitis.
Histological features compatible with reflux esophagitis were found in 28.2% of the baboons and in 22.2% of the macaques. Esophagitis grade 1 was more common in baboons (24%) than in macaques (6%), while esophagitis grade 2 was more common in macaques (17%) than in baboons (2%).
Although the prevalence of reflux esophagitis in man is at least 2%, only a fraction of patients demonstrate histological features consistent with grades 1, 2 or 3 esophagitis. Hence, the finding that 27% of a cohort of consecutive, unselected NHP had grades 1, 2 or 3 esophagitis at histology is remarkable. The possible causes for the difference between species, such as the oblique position often adopted by NHP during the gastric phase of digestion, the diet, regurgitation and subsequent re-ingestion, as well as the stress of NHP when kept in captivity, are reviewed.
PMCID: PMC3468915  PMID: 19180997
Esophagitis; reflux; non-human primates indent
16.  Further Studies on Barretts Mucosa in Baboons: Metaplastic Glandular Cells Produce Sialomucin 
Anticancer research  2010;30(10):4123-4126.
In humans and in baboons, protracted gastro-esophageal reflux (GER) transforms the squamous-lined esophagus into columnar-lined (that is Barrett's mucosa, BM). Alcian blue stain (AB) is used to evidence sialomucin-producing goblet cells in human BM.
To assess the frequency and distribution of sialomucin-producing cells in BM in baboons.
Materials and Methods
Sections from 137 consecutive baboon esophagi were alternatively stained with hematoxylin-eosin (H&E) and with AB (pH 2.5), without counterstain.
Out of 137 baboons, 131 (95.6%) had BM. Columnar and intramucosal glandular cells produced sialomucin in all 131 of these animals. Many BM cells were ballooned and filled with sialomucins, despite goblet cells not being found in H&E sections.
In humans, protracted GER is a disease requiring medication that may lead to BM; AB stains mainly goblet cells and occasional columnar cells in BM. In baboons, in contrast, BM is a natural postnatal process of adaptation to GER, triggered by regurgitation and rumination. AB stains all columnar and intra-mucosal glandular cells. Sialomucin-overstuffed cells were more frequent and larger in baboons than in humans. The extra load of sialomucin in BM might be an integrated part of the postnatal life-long process of adaptation to regurgitation and rumination in baboons.
PMCID: PMC3468319  PMID: 21036729
Esophagus; baboons; glandular metaplasia; sialomucins
17.  A Simple Method to Record Parietal Cells in the Fundic Mucosa in Baboons 
In vivo (Athens, Greece)  2010;24(5):705-707.
Gastric parietal cells in a baboon were recently found to be auto-fluorescent. Aim: To study gastric sections with a fluorescent microscope in a cohort of baboons.
Material and Methods
Gastric sections from 38 baboons were stained with hematoxylin-eosin (H&E) and examined in a fluorescence microscope (FLM). The thickness of the parietal cell population was assessed at ×10 magnification.
H&E stained all mucosal cells: fovelar, parietal and chief cells. When the same sections were analyzed with an FLM, only parietal cells were auto-fluorescent, whereas fovelar and chief cells remained non-fluorescent. Parietal cells formed a distinct, continuous auto-fluorescent band. The ratio of the auto-fluorescent parietal cell band/total mucosa ranged between 0.20 and 0.30.
Gastric parietal cells became auto-fluorescent when H&E-stained sections from baboon stomachs were observed with an FLM. Eosin was the stain responsible for this optical phenomenon.
PMCID: PMC3468321  PMID: 20952737
Gastric mucosa; parietal cells; auto-fluorescence; identification
18.  Spontaneous Heart Disease in the Adult Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) 
Journal of medical primatology  2008;38(1):51-58.
A high incidence of heart disease, especially idiopathic cardiomyopathy, is seen in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes).
We reviewed clinical records and necropsy reports of 87 adult chimpanzees for possible causes of heart disease/idiopathic cardiomyopathy. We examined age, sex, cause of death, weight, diet, environment, infectious diseases, experimental uses, and clinical pathology.
The overall prevalence of heart disease in chimpanzees was 67.81%; the prevalence of idiopathic cardiomyopathy was 51.72%. The prevalence of idiopathic cardiomyopathy was significantly higher in males (60.32%) than females (29.17%, p=0.009). The prevalence of other heart disease was higher in females (25%) than males (12.70%, p=0.165). Heart failure occurred in 47.13% of chimpanzees. Heart disease was the primary cause of death in 34.49% of chimpanzees; 29.88% died of unknown causes.
We found no evidence that diet, environment, viral agents, experimental use or disease exposure contributed to the deaths resulting from idiopathic cardiomyopathy in chimpanzees.
PMCID: PMC2933140  PMID: 18671767
ape; cardiomyopathy; atherosclerosis; arteriosclerosis; nonhuman primate
19.  Congenital anomalies in the baboon (Papio spp.) 
Journal of medical primatology  2011;40(5):357-363.
A comprehensive survey of the prevalence of congenital anomalies in baboons has not been previously reported. We report the congenital anomalies observed over a 26-year period in a large captive baboon colony.
A computer search was performed for all baboon congenital anomalies identified at necropsy and recorded on necropsy submissions.
We identified 198 congenital anomalies in 166 baboons from 9,972 necropsies (1.66% of total necropsies). The nervous, urogenital, musculoskeletal, and cardiovascular systems were most commonly affected. The most common organs affected were the brain, bone, heart, testicle, kidney, penis, aorta, and skeletal muscle. The most frequent congenital anomalies were blindness, seizures, and hydrocephalus.
The baboon has an overall frequency of congenital anomalies similar to humans and other nonhuman primates. Although the most frequently affected systems are similar, congenital anomalies involving the digestive system appear to be less common in the baboon.
PMCID: PMC3136631  PMID: 21332757
nonhuman primate; pathology; spontaneous disease; natural
20.  A preliminary report on the feeding of cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) with a high sugar high fat diet for 33 weeks 
Journal of Medical Primatology  2011;40(5):335-341.
The metabolic syndrome is common in populations exposed to a typical Western diet. There is a lack of an animal model that mimics this condition.
We fed 15 cynomolgus monkeys ad libitum a high sugar high fat (HSHF) diet for 33 weeks. Body weight, body composition, serum lipids and insulin were measured at baseline and at 33 weeks.
The animals tolerated the HSHF diet very well. In the intervention group, total serum cholesterol and LDL-C were 3- and 5-fold higher, respectively, at 33 weeks as compared to their baseline levels. Serum HDL-C and triglycerides were not significantly affected. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) analysis of the intervention group indicated that the trunk fat mass increased by 187% during this period.
Cynomolgus monkeys should be a useful model for investigating the interactions of diet and other factors such as genetics in the development of the metabolic syndrome.
PMCID: PMC3282177  PMID: 21812784
Dual X-ray absorptiometry; LDL-cholesterol; triglyceride; insulin
21.  Spontaneous Squamous Cell Carcinomas in 13 Baboons, a First Report in a Spider Monkey, and a Review of the Nonhuman Primate Literature 
Journal of medical primatology  2009;38(3):175-186.
Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is a neoplastic proliferation of epithelial cells undergoing squamous differentiation and represents a diagnostic challenge in nonhuman primates (NHP), especially in baboons with perineal SCC.
Fourteen SCC (13 baboons, 1 spider monkey) were identified over a 20-year period. A literature search identified 86 additional published cases of spontaneous NHP SCC.
SCC was most commonly reported in macaques, baboons, marmosets, and squirrel monkeys. Metastasis occurred in 23%, of NHP. The most frequently reported primary locations were the oral cavity, integument, esophagus, and cervix-uterus. Perineal SCC occurred mainly in baboons. All reported SCC in marmosets occurred in the head. Nasal cavity SCC was only reported in male marmosets. All reported pulmonary SCC occurred in males, mostly in tree shrews.
SCC is a common neoplasm in NHP and exhibits species differences. NHPs may provide a useful SCC animal model.
PMCID: PMC2919327  PMID: 19220686
Cancer; neoplasm; Papio; skin; oral cavity; esophagus
22.  Fatal Acute Chagas Disease in a Chimpanzee 
Journal of medical primatology  2009;38(4):247-251.
Chagas disease (CD) or American trypanosomiasis is caused by a hemoflagellate protozoan, Trypanosoma cruzi (TC). This organism has been isolated from more than 100 mammalian species and several insect vectors demonstrating a wide host distribution and low host specificity.
A 23 year old male chimpanzee died acutely and a complete necropsy was performed to evaluate gross and microscopic pathologic changes. After observation of trypanosomal amastigotes in the myocardium, PCR and immunohistochemistry was employed to confirm the diagnosis of TC.
Gross findings were consistent with mild congestive heart failure. Microscopic findings included multifocal myocardial necrosis associated with severe lymphocytic to mixed inflammatory infiltrates, edema, and mild chronic interstitial fibrosis. Multifocal intracytoplasmic amastigotes morphologically consistent with TC were observed in cardiac myofibers. TC was confirmed by PCR and immunohistochemistry.
We report, to the best of our knowledge, the first fatal spontaneous case of TC infection in a chimpanzee.
PMCID: PMC2711217  PMID: 19281482
Ape; nonhuman primate; protozoa; fatal case; Trypanosoma cruzi
23.  Endometrial and cervical polyps in 22 baboons (Papio sp.), 5 cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis) and one marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) 
Journal of medical primatology  2009;38(4):257-262.
Endometrial and cervical polyps are masses of endometrium or cervical epithelium that bulge into the uterine or cervical lumen. The physiopathology and contributing factors of endometrial polyps development are still unknown.
Clinical and pathology records of 28 nonhuman primates with histologically confirmed endometrial and cervical polyps were reviewed. Twenty-one baboons with endometrial polyps were evaluated for age at diagnosis; body weight; menstrual cycle length, presence of endometriosis and adenomyosis; and number of offspring, cesarean sections, and stillbirths.
Endometrial polyps in baboons were associated with increased age, decreased menstrual cycle lengths, endometriosis, and decreased parity. No differences were found for weight, adenomyosis, or number of cesarean sections or stillbirths.
Baboons are a promising model for the study of endometrial polyps because of their similarity to humans in both the development of endometrial polyps and association of many of the same risk factors.
PMCID: PMC2729650  PMID: 19281481
endometrium; uterus; mass; cancer; nonhuman primate
24.  Nonspecific Lymphocytic Myocarditis in Baboons Is Associated with Trypanosoma cruzi Infection 
Non-specific lymphocytic myocarditis (NLM) is frequently observed in baboons within the endemic range of Trypanosoma cruzi. We sought to determine whether T. cruzi infection is a cause of baboon NLM. We evaluated serial histologic sections of cardiac muscle, blood cultures, immunohistochemistry, serology, polymerase chain reaction, and clinical pathology from 31 baboons with NLM to determine whether T. cruzi infection is associated with NLM. Eleven baboons with no evidence of T. cruzi infection by serology and no NLM were used as controls. Seropositivity for T. cruzi was 45% in baboons with NLM compared with a 2–3% colony prevalence. NLM lesion severity was significantly higher in seropositive than seronegative baboons with NLM. NLM was significantly more common in older baboons. No statistical association between NLM and sex, weight, or clinical pathology was found. These results suggest an association between NLM and T. cruzi infection in the baboon.
PMCID: PMC2740900  PMID: 19635876
25.  Polymerase Chain Reaction Detection of Trypanosoma cruzi in Macaca fascicularis Using Archived Tissues 
This study describes conventional and real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) methods developed to detect and quantify Trypanosoma cruzi DNA in cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) using formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded blocks archived for periods of up to 6 years. The highest concentration of T. cruzi DNA was found in the myocardium, urinary bladder, stomach, lymph node, adrenal gland, and colon. The concentration of T. cruzi DNA detected in cardiac tissues was 10–100-fold greater than found elsewhere; the mean concentrations of T. cruzi DNA in non-cardiac tissues were otherwise comparable. Trypanosoma cruzi DNA was amplified from cerebrum but not cerebellum or kidney. Successful use of DNA from formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded blocks is important because most pathology laboratories routinely archive wax blocks. This archived resource can be used for further studies on the prevalence of this disease.
PMCID: PMC2740910  PMID: 19635875

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