Leprosy in red squirrels in Scotland

@article{Meredith2014LeprosyIR,
  title={Leprosy in red squirrels in Scotland},
  author={Anna Meredith and Jorge del Pozo and Sionagh H. Smith and Elspeth M Milne and Karen Stevenson and Joyce McLuckie},
  journal={Veterinary Record},
  year={2014},
  volume={175},
  pages={285 - 286}
}
RED squirrel ( Sciurus vulgaris ) populations in the UK are in dramatic decline and Scotland has an estimated 120,000 remaining, about 75 per cent of the UK population. Since 2006, six cases of a distinctive novel presentation of dermatitis in red squirrels from various locations throughout Scotland have been detected at postmortem examination, as part of a scanning surveillance scheme operated by the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies (R[D]SVS), University of Edinburgh. Grossly, all… 
Leprosy in red squirrels in the UK
TLDR
Consecutive studies demonstrated the presence of M lepromatosis in red squirrels in other areas, including the Isle of Arran, Isle of Wight and the Republic of Ireland, and an alternative causative agent, Mycobacterium leprae, was identified in red Squirrels exclusively on Brownsea Island.
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TLDR
Information is provided on the most common clinical presentations of casualty squirrels in the UK and discusses some of the other important diseases recorded in UK squirrels.
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TLDR
It is proposed that leprosy in ERS is a chronic, slowly progressing disease in this species, similar to that described for other hosts; lesions can undergo repeated ulceration-healing cycles; and in some instances M. leprae DNA and αPGL-I antibodies are detectable before the onset of clinical signs of disease.
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TLDR
Four of the 163 squirrels examined had gross, crusty thickening of the pinnae, sometimes with keratinised or wart-like protuberances, and one of the IoW cases also had a single, clearly circumscribed wart- like growth on the bridge of the nose and on one flank.
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TLDR
An amended definition of leprosy lesions in ERS is proposed as “skin areas of local hair loss, in which a firm–rubbery, glossy swelling develops, that may ulcerate” and standardized terminology for describing ERS leproSy status is proposed.
Red squirrels in the British Isles are infected with leprosy bacilli
TLDR
Red squirrels in Great Britain have increasingly been observed with leprosy-like lesions on the head and limbs, and using genomics, histopathology, and serology, M. lepromatosis was found in squirrels from England, Ireland, and Scotland, and Mycobacterium leprae in Squirrels from Brownsea Island, England.
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British Red Squirrels Remain the Only Known Wild Rodent Host for Leprosy Bacilli
TLDR
No DNA from leprosy bacilli was detected in any of the samples tested, given the sample-size, and the pathogen should have been detected if the prevalence and/or bacillary load in the populations investigated were similar to those found for British red squirrels.
Detection of humoral immunity to mycobacteria causing leprosy in Eurasian red squirrels (Sciurus vulgaris) using a quantitative rapid test
TLDR
This study shows that the αPGL-I UCP-LFAs presented here allows a field-friendly serological confirmation of M. leprae infection in clinically diseased live ERS.
Mortalities, amyloidosis and other diseases in free-living red squirrels (Sciurus vulgaris) on Jersey, Channel Islands
TLDR
Road traffic accidents, amyloidosis and FED have been identified as important causes of squirrel morbidity and mortality on Jersey, while the underlying aetiology and predisposing factors for these two disease complexes are presently unclear.
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