DAO 107:31-36 (2013)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02672

Heart pathologies in dolphins stranded along the northwestern Italian coast

F. E. Scaglione1,*, E. Bollo1, P. Pregel1, L. Chiappino1, A. Sereno1, W. Mignone2, R. Moschi3, F. Garibaldi4, C. Tittarelli2, F. Guarda

1Dipartimento di Scienze Veterinarie, Università degli Studi di Torino, 10095 Grugliasco, Italy
2Istituto Zooprofilattico del Piemonte, Liguria e Valle d’Aosta, Sezione di Imperia, 18100 Imperia, Italy
3ASL 1 imperiese, Bussana di Sanremo, 18038 Sanremo, Italy
4Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra, dell’Ambiente e della Vita, Università degli Studi di Genova, 16132 Genova, Italy

ABSTRACT: Nine striped dolphins Stenella coeruleoalba and 1 bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus stranded along the Ligurian Sea coast of Italy were necropsied between February 2011 and April 2012. Macroscopic and histological findings were observed in the hearts of all animals and included saccular aneurysms of the pulmonary trunk (n = 3), cirsoid aneurysms (n = 1), right ventricular dilation (n = 1) associated with hypoplasia of the tricuspid chordae (n = 1), valvular fibrosis (n = 3), mitral leaflet thickening (n = 1), left ventricular hypertrophy (n = 1), lymphocytic myocarditis (n = 1), and Lambl’s excrescences (n = 4). To our best knowledge Lambl’s excrescences, aneurysm of the pulmonary trunk, and cirsoid aneurysms have not previously been described in marine mammals, and some of these findings should be taken into account as possible causes of dolphin morbidity, mortality, and stranding.


KEY WORDS: Aneurism · Lambl’s excrescences · Stenella coeruleoalba · Tursiops truncatus


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Cite this article as: Scaglione FE, Bollo E, Pregel P, Chiappino L and others (2013) Heart pathologies in dolphins stranded along the northwestern Italian coast. Dis Aquat Org 107:31-36. https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02672

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