Open Access Chronic Diseases in Captive Geriatric Female Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

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Abstract:

The current aging population of captive chimpanzees is expected to develop age-related diseases and present new challenges to providing their veterinary care. Spontaneous heart disease and sudden cardiac death are the main causes of death in chimpanzees (especially of male animals), but little is known about the relative frequency of other chronic diseases. Furthermore, female chimpanzees appear to outlive the males and scant literature addresses clinical conditions that affect female chimpanzees. Here we characterize the types and prevalence of chronic disease seen in geriatric (older than 35 y) female chimpanzees in the colony at Alamogordo Primate Facility. Of the 16 female chimpanzees that fit the age category, 87.5% had some form of chronic age-related disease. Cardiovascular-related disease was the most common (81.25%) followed by metabolic syndrome (43.75%) and renal disease (31.25%). These data show the incidence of disease in geriatric female chimpanzees and predict likely medical management chal- lenges associated with maintaining an aging chimpanzee population.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: School of Veterinary Medicine, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana,, USA; Biologic Resources Laboratory, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA 2: Alamogordo Primate Facility, Alamogordo, New Mexico, USA; Division of Primate Resources, Washington Regional Primate Center, Seattle, Washington, USA 3: Alamogordo Primate Facility, Alamogordo, New Mexico, USA

Publication date: April 1, 2012

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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