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A 57-year-old female chimpanzee presented with a brief history of increasing lethargy and rapidly progressive lower-limb weakness that culminated in loss of use. Postmortem examination revealed no significant gross lesions in the nervous system or other organ systems. Histological analysis revealed round, basophilic to amphophilic polyglucosan bodies (PGBs) in the white and gray matter of the cervical, thoracic, lumbar, and coccygeal regions of spinal cord. Only rare PGBs were observed in forebrain samples. The lesions in the spinal cord were polymorphic, and they were positively stained with hematoxylin, periodic acid Schiff, Alcian blue, toluidine blue, Bielschowsky silver, and Grocott-Gomori methenamine-silver methods, and they were negative for von Kossa and Congo Red stains. Immunohistochemical evaluation revealed reactivity with antibodies to ubiquitin, but they were negative for glial fibrillary acidic protein, neuron-specific enolase, neurofilaments, tau protein, and Aβ protein. Electron microscopy revealed non-membrane-bound deposits composed of densely packed filaments within axons and in the extracellular space. Intra-axonal PGBs were associated with disruption of the axonal fine structure and disintegration of the surrounding myelin sheath. These findings are the first description of PGBs linked to neurological dysfunction in a chimpanzee. Clinicopathologically, the disorder resembled adult PGB disease in humans.© 2023 Japanese Society of Neuropathology.

Citation

Sanjeev Gumber, Fawn Connor-Stroud, Dustin Howard, Xiaodong Zhang, Brenda J Bradley, Chet C Sherwood, Lary C Walker. Polyglucosan body disease in an aged chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes). Neuropathology : official journal of the Japanese Society of Neuropathology. 2023 Apr 21


PMID: 37086019

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