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J Comp Pathol. 2004 Aug-Oct;131(2-3):233-6.

Chromosome aberrations in cattle with chronic enzootic haematuria.

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  • 1Department of Animal Production Sciences, University of Basilicata, Via N. Sauro 85, 85100 Potenza, Italy.


Chromosomal aberrations were investigated in 56 cattle with chronic enzootic haematuria (CEH) raised on pastures giving access to bracken fern. Of these animals, 27 were slaughtered and showed neoplastic lesions of the urinary bladder. Tumour tissue from 11 of the 27 cattle contained bovine papillomavirus type 2 (BPV-2) DNA. Increased numbers of chromosomal aberrations were seen in all animals with CEH, as compared with 30 control cattle that had had no access to bracken fern. The highest clastogenic effect was observed in cattle with urinary bladder cancer and evidence of BPV-2 DNA, suggesting that BPV-2 and bracken fern act synergistically in the production of chromosomal instability. In 19 of 20 animals with CEH, two bracken fern toxic compounds (quercitin and ptaquiloside) were demonstrated in urine, serum and milk.

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