Leptospirosis in Northern Sea Otters (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) from Washington

Journal of Wildlife Diseases
By: , and 



We diagnosed leptospirosis in six northern sea otters (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) that stranded on beaches in Washington, US in 2002. Significant gross findings included cyanotic oral mucous membranes, renal swelling, congestion or pale streaks on the cut surface of the lobules, hematuria, dehydration, lymphadenopathy, pulmonary congestion and rarely adrenal hemorrhage and congestion. Histopathology showed lymphoplasmacytic tubulointerstitial nephritis with intraluminal spirochetes and immunoreactivity to leptospiral antigens in the renal tubules and interstitium. qPCR using kidney or urine for the leptospiral lipL32 gene was positive with cycle threshold values indicative of abundant or moderate amounts of nucleic acid. A microscopic agglutination test showed the highest serum antibody titer to serovar Pomona and titers to serovars Autumnalis, Bratislava, Hebdomadis, Grippo, Ictero, Pyrogenes, Ballum, Canicola, and Hardjo. While antibodies to Leptospira interrogans have been previously detected in sea otters, there are no reports of disease or descriptions of pathology.

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Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Leptospirosis in Northern Sea Otters (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) from Washington
Series title Journal of Wildlife Diseases
DOI 10.7589/2019-05-112
Volume 56
Issue 2
Year Published 2019
Language English
Publisher Wildlife Disease Association
Contributing office(s) National Wildlife Health Center
Description 6 p.
First page 466
Last page 471
Country United States
State Washington
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