Infection with Aleutian disease virus-like virus in a captive striped skunk

Matthew C. Allender, Juergen Schumacher, Kathy V. Thomas, Stephanie L. McCain, Edward C. Ramsay, Evan W. James, Annabel G. Wise, Roger K. Maes, Danielle Reel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Case Description - A 5-month-old captive female striped skunk {Mephitis mephitis) was evaluated because of lethargy, signs of depression, azotemia, and erythema of the skin around the eyes. Clinical Findings - Antemortem diagnostic tests revealed renal disease but failed to identify an etiologic agent. A diagnosis of severe nonsuppurative interstitial nephritis was made on the basis of results of histologic examination of renal biopsy specimens. Treatment and Outcome - The skunk was administered isotonic fluids SC daily and later every other day because of the handling-related stress. Because of the skunk's deteriorating condition, it was euthanized after 24 days of supportive care. Aleutian disease was diagnosed on the basis of positive results of a PCR assay that targeted the DNA from Aleutian disease virus (ADV); positive results for ADV were also obtained by use of plasma counterimmunoelectrophoresis and an ELISA. Genetic sequencing of the 365-base pair PCR product revealed 90% sequence identity with mink ADV. Clinical Relevance - In the skunk of this report, infection with a skunk-specific parvovirus resulted in clinical signs and pathologic changes similar to those associated with ADV infection in mink. For skunks with signs of renal failure, differential diagnoses should include parvovirus infection. In confirmed cases of infection with this ADV-like virus, appropriate quarantine and biosecurity measures should be in place to prevent spread to other susceptible animals within a zoological collection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)742-746
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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