Physical examination of an asymptomatic 20-yr-old intact female spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta) revealed a midabdominal mass. A complete blood count (CBC) revealed peripheral lymphocytosis. Abdominal ultrasonography and laparoscopy confirmed severe splenomegaly. Cytologic examination of a bone-marrow core and histologic examination of spleen and liver biopsy samples revealed neoplastic small lymphocytes. Immunohistochemical staining of liver and spleen samples with the use of leukocyte-specific monoclonal antibodies showed that the neoplastic lymphocytes were immunoreactive to T-lymphocyte CD3 receptor and immunonegative to B-lymphocyte CD79a receptor. The morphology and distribution of neoplastic T-lymphocytes within the spleen, liver, peripheral blood, and bone marrow was most consistent with chronic T-lymphocytic leukemia. Treatment with chlorambucil and prednisone effectively decreased the lymphocyte count, but was associated with thrombocytopenia, which resolved after chlorambucil treatment was temporarily discontinued. Chemotherapy was resumed with a single dose of l-asparaginase, followed by a lower dosage of chlorambucil and continued prednisone. Two years after initial diagnosis, the hyena developed a hemoabdomen and was euthanized. Neoplastic T-lymphocytes were present in spleen, liver, visceral and peripheral lymph nodes, lungs, heart, kidney, adrenal glands, mesentery, intestines, pancreas, brain, and bone marrow.
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Vol. 38 • No. 3