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Fatal systemic toxoplasmosis in a rock hyrax (Procavia capensis)
  1. Eva Dervas1,
  2. Jean-Michel Hatt2 and
  3. Monika Hilbe1
  1. 1 Institute of Veterinary Pathology, Vetsuisse-Faculty, Zürich, Switzerland
  2. 2 Clinic for Zoo Animals, Exotic Pets and Wildlife, Vetsuisse-Faculty, Zürich, Switzerland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Monika Hilbe; hilbe{at}


The present report describes a case of fatal toxoplasmosis in a two-year-old female rock hyrax (Procavia capensis). Major histopathological findings consisted of multifocal acute necrotising hepatitis, enteritis and adrenalitis, glial nodule formation in the brain, and suppurative splenitis with numerous intralesional protozoan tachyzoites and tissue cysts. Infection with Toxoplasma gondii was confirmed via immunohistochemical examination in the liver, adrenal gland, spleen, intestine, brain and the lung. To the authors’ knowledge this is the first case report of a systemic toxoplasmosis in a rock hyrax and in the family of Procaviidae.

  • toxoplasma
  • zoo animals
  • protozoa
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  • Contributors ED did the postmortem examination, wrote the manuscript and did the photos. MH helped with writing and editing. J-MH corrected the manuscript and provided information on the zoo.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement No additional data are available.

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