The subclinical form of experimental visceral leishmaniasis in dogs

Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. Apr-Jun 1993;88(2):243-8. doi: 10.1590/s0074-02761993000200011.


Pathological aspects of a subclinical form of experimental canine leishmaniasis is reported here for the first time. Fifteen mongrel dogs were used in the present study. Eight dogs were infected and seven were used as control. Four of the control dogs were inoculated with spleen cells from non-infected hamsters. The eight mongrel dogs inoculated intravenously with amastigotes forms of Leishmania chagasi evolved for periods as long as 25 months without any clinical characteristic sign of classical Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL). Most of the laboratory test results were compatible to those of the seven control animals but culture of bone marrow aspirated material and serologic testing (IIF) demonstrated or provided evidence that the animals were infected. The most important and predominant histopathological lesion in infected animals were epithelioid granulomas presented in the liver, spleen, adrenal gland and lung of some animals. Channels containing erythrocytes in some granulomas of the liver suggest that these granulomas are formed inside sinusoidal capillaries. Despite the animals were proved to be infected and presented characteristic histologic lesions, they did not present external signs of disease. The granulomatous aspect of the lesions indicates a good immunologic reactivity and suggest that a host-parasite equilibrium does exist in the dog experimental model.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Disease Reservoirs
  • Dog Diseases / pathology*
  • Dogs
  • Female
  • Host-Parasite Interactions
  • Leishmania infantum / immunology
  • Leishmania infantum / physiology*
  • Leishmaniasis, Visceral / pathology
  • Leishmaniasis, Visceral / veterinary*
  • Liver / pathology
  • Male
  • Spleen / pathology