Beginning in the fall of 1998 and extending into the spring and early summer of 1999 there was a large epizootic of squirrel fibromatosis in squirrels in seven counties in peninsular Florida. Hundreds of gray squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis) with multiple cutaneous tumors were submitted or reported to biologists, veterinary hospitals, and private wildlife rehabilitators. Most squirrels died or were euthanized soon after submission. Twenty squirrels were submitted for necropsy. The majority of the squirrels examined were adults (12/20) and male (15/20). The number and location of tumors varied widely among the affected squirrels; however, a consistent finding was involvement of the eyelids (20/20). Histopathology revealed a proliferative population of mesenchymal cells within the dermis and marked ballooning degeneration of keratinocytes in the overlying epidermis. Intracytoplasmic viral inclusions were present in the neoplastic mesenchymal cell population and the degenerating keratinocytes. Ulceration and necrosis of the surface of the tumors or associated tissues was present in 14 of the 20 squirrels. Virions consistent with poxvirus were observed via electron microscopy in samples collected from a representative tumor. Death of the squirrels was attributed to emaciation, tissue damage, and severe negative energy balance associated with poxvirus infection and massive tumor growth. The underlying cause of this unusual epizootic of fibromatosis in gray squirrels remains unknown.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 38 • No. 2