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Dis Aquat Organ. 2012 Dec 27;102(2):149-56. doi: 10.3354/dao02538.

Severe soft tissue ossification in a southern right whale Eubalaena australis.

Author information

1
Southern Right Whale Health Monitoring Program, Puerto Madryn, Chubut, Argentina. luciana@yahoo.com.ar

Abstract

The carcass of a stranded southern right whale Eubalaena australis, discovered on the coast of Golfo Nuevo in Península Valdés, Argentina, exhibited extensive orthotopic and heterotopic ossification, osteochondroma-like lesions, and early degenerative joint disease. Extensive soft tissue ossification led to ankylosis of the axial skeleton in a pattern that, in many respects, appeared more similar to a disabling human genetic disorder, fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP), than to more common skeletal system diseases in cetaceans and other species. This is the first reported case of a FOP-like condition in a marine mammal and raises important questions about conserved mechanisms of orthotopic and heterotopic ossification in this clade.

PMID:
23269389
PMCID:
PMC3670425
DOI:
10.3354/dao02538
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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