Neuronal vacuolation in raccoons (Procyon lotor).

TitleNeuronal vacuolation in raccoons (Procyon lotor).
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1997
AuthorsHamir AN, Heidel JR, Picton R, Rupprecht CE
JournalVeterinary pathology
Date Published1997 May
KeywordsAnimals, Male, Neurons, Prion Diseases, Raccoons, Vacuoles

Microscopic vacuolar changes in neuronal perikaryon are described in two free-ranging raccoons (Procyon lotor) from different geographic locations in the United States. Both animals were negative for rabies and scrapie-associated antigens. Microscopically, lesions were not seen in the neuropil. Neuronal vacuolations have previously been documented in brains of normal animals and in diseases such as rabies and prion-associated encephalopathies. Although experimental transmission of a spongiform mink encephalopathy has been documented in raccoons, a naturally occurring spongiform encephalopathy has not been described in this species. The presence of neuronal vacuolations in the raccoons is novel and requires further investigation to elucidate the mechanism of this phenomenon.

Alternate JournalVet. Pathol.