Spinal deformity in a sandtiger shark, Carcharias taurus Rafinesque: a clinical-pathological study

J Fish Dis. 2006 Jan;29(1):49-60. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2761.2005.00684.x.


The present study investigated spinal deformity in a captive sandtiger shark and describes the clinical and histopathological features of the lesion. Clinically, the shark presented a marked spinal curvature in the region between the pectoral girdle and cranial dorsal fin. Radiographic studies revealed scoliosis and kyphosis of the vertebral column with a modification of the basic structure of five vertebrae. Post-mortem examination confirmed the results of radiographic studies and histological examination showed remodelling and cartilaginous proliferation of the vertebral bodies together with necrosis, haemorrhage and signs of a local chronic inflammatory response extending to the surrounding muscle. Different aetiologies are proposed and discussed but nutritional imbalance (dietary vitamin deficiency) and/or traumatic injury are considered the most likely contributing factors.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cartilage / pathology
  • Erythrocyte Indices / veterinary
  • Liver / microbiology
  • Liver / pathology
  • Male
  • Pancreas / microbiology
  • Photobacterium / isolation & purification
  • Sharks / abnormalities*
  • Sharks / microbiology
  • Spinal Curvatures / diagnostic imaging
  • Spinal Curvatures / pathology
  • Spinal Curvatures / veterinary*
  • Spine / abnormalities*
  • Spine / diagnostic imaging
  • Spine / pathology
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / veterinary
  • Vitamins / blood


  • Vitamins