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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 155:73-78 (2023)  -  DOI:

Glomerulocystic kidney in two red piranhas Pygocentrus nattereri

C. de Sales-Ribeiro1,*, S. R. R. Pisano1, N. Diserens1, S. Hoby2, H. Schmidt-Posthaus1

1Institute for Fish and Wildlife Health, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
2Berne Animal Park, 3055 Bern, Switzerland
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Glomerulocystic kidney (GCK) is defined by a dilatation of the Bowman’s space (greater than 2 times the normal size) of more than 5% of all glomeruli. Although GCK has been occasionally documented in dogs, cats, and humans with renal failure, in fish, reports of spontaneous GCK are rare. For the present study, 2 captive adult red piranhas Pygocentrus nattereri from a closed population were submitted for post-mortem examination. Clinical history included lethargy, inappetence, dyspnea, and altered buoyancy. Macroscopically, the fish displayed coelomic distension and ascites. The kidneys were markedly enlarged and dark yellow. Histologically, Bowman’s space was noticeably dilated, occasionally with atrophic glomerular tufts. Degeneration and necrosis of the tubular epithelium, infiltration, and nephrocalcinosis were also present. To the authors’ knowledge, this present study is the first report of spontaneously occurring GCK in red piranhas and freshwater fish in general. Despite being rare, GCK is a condition with the potential to impair the health of fish and mammals, and further studies are needed to shed new light on this condition.

KEY WORDS: Glomerulocystic · Kidney · GCK · Piranha · Pygocentrus · Fish · Histopathology

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Cite this article as: de Sales-Ribeiro C, Pisano SRR, Diserens N, Hoby S, Schmidt-Posthaus H (2023) Glomerulocystic kidney in two red piranhas Pygocentrus nattereri. Dis Aquat Org 155:73-78.

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