Seneciosis in cattle associated with photosensitization

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Paula R. Giaretta ; Welden Panziera ; Glauco J.A. Galiza ; Juliana S. Brum ; Ronaldo M. Bianchi ; Márcia E. Hammerschmitt ; Talissa Bazzi ; Claudio S.L. Barros (2014)
  • Publisher: Colégio Brasileiro de Patologia Animal (CBPA)
  • Journal: Pesquisa Veterinária Brasileira (issn: 1678-5150)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1590/S0100-736X2014000500007
  • Subject: seneciosis | plant poisoning | Asteraceae | liver | fígado | intoxicação por plantas | Plantas tóxicas | SF600-1100 | seneciose | photosensitization | fotossensibilização | cattle disease | Senecio brasiliensis | doenças de bovinos | Veterinary medicine | Poisonous plants

Senecio spp. poisoning is the main cause of cattle mortality in the central region of Rio Grande do Sul. This paper reports an outbreak of seneciosis in cattle with high prevalence of photosensitization, where 83 out of 162 cows (51.3%) presented this clinical sign. The outbreak occurred in September 2013, affecting adult cows that were held in a 205 hectare-pasture from April to October 2013 with abundant Senecio brasiliensis infestation. Main clinical signs were weight loss, excessive lacrimation or mucopurulent ocular discharge, nasal serous discharge, ventral diphteric glossitis, crusts in the nose, teats, dorsum of ears, and vulva. Liver biopsy was performed in all the cows under risk; the histopathological findings in the liver biopsies consisted of fibrosis, megalocytosis, and biliary ductal proliferation and were present in 73.4% of the biopsied animals. Six cows had increased serum activity of gamma glutamyl transferase. Three affected cows were necropsied. The main necropsy findings were a hard liver, distended gall bladder, edema of the mesentery and abomasum. Liver histological changes in the necropsied cows were similar to those of the biopsied livers. Spongiosis was detected in the brain of necropsied cows and is characteristic of hepatic encephalopathy.