Characterization of interstitial nephritis in pigs with naturally occurring postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome

Giuseppei Sarli, L. Mandrioli, S. Panarese, B. Brunetti, J. Segalés, J. Domínguez, P. S. Marcato

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16 Citations (Scopus)


Kidney samples with interstitial nephritis from 26 pigs affected by postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS) were selected. A histologic evaluation was carried out to describe the type of inflammation and its relationship with viral load, as assessed by in situ hybridization (ISH). Of 26 cases, 10 revealed a tubulointerstitial, lymphoplasmacytic nephritis, 11 an interstitial granulomatous nephritis, and 5 both types of inflammation (mixed type). In 4 cases of granulomatous inflammation, the pattern was not classically nodular, and a population of macrophages and lymphocytes was present (interstitial lymphohistiocytic nephritis). ISH confirmed the presence of porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) nucleic acid in all cases. The epithelium of the renal tubules was the most constantly ISH-positive structure. In tubulointerstitial nephritis, the higher the number of positive inflammatory cells, the more severe the inflammation. The ISH reaction was more heterogeneous and unpredictable in granulomatous nephritis, with some epithelioid and giant cells positive by ISH. To quantify macrophages distributed in the three patterns of nephritis, immunohistochemical methods using anti-major histocompatibility complex II (anti-MHC-II) and anti-lysozyme antibodies were undertaken, and semiquantitative evaluation was carried out. MHC-II was mainly expressed by lymphocytes in tubulointerstitial nephritis, but did not always stain macrophages in cases of granulomatous (including lymphohistiocytic) nephritis; the anti-lysozyme antibody revealed macrophages when present in tissues. The amount of PCV2 nucleic acid was not apparently associated with the pattern of inflammation (tubulointerstitial or granulomatous). PCV2 load seems to reflect the severity of the lymphoplasmacytic inflammation but not that of granulomatous and lympho histiocytic types.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-18
JournalVeterinary Pathology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008


  • Immunohistochemistry
  • In situ hybridization
  • Nephritis
  • PMWS
  • Pig
  • Porcine circovirus type 2


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