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Open Access Trophoblast Deportation to the Lungs of Cotton Rats (Sigmodon hispidus)

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Cotton rats (Sigmodon hispidus) have been used to study a variety of infectious agents, particularly human respiratory viral pathogens. During the course of comprehensive pathologic evaluations of aging breeders from our breeding colony, 6 of 22 (27%) female cotton rats had histologic evidence, limited to the lungs, of embolized cells that were confirmed to be trophoblastic in origin by HSD3B1 immunoreactivity. When pulmonary trophoblast emboli were numerous, they usually were associated with additional histologic findings in the lungs, including pulmonary edema and hemorrhage, endothelial hypertrophy, fibrinoid vascular necrosis, and abundant alveolar macrophages containing fresh fibrin and hemolyzing erythrocytes. Of the 6 cotton rats with pulmonary trophoblast emboli, 5 (83%) were at 8 to 18 d of the 27-d gestation period, with the greatest number of emboli per lung present between days 10 through 14. The remaining cotton rat had a focal pulmonary trophoblast embolus and was not pregnant but had delivered a litter 3 mo previously. Three other cotton rats in either the early or late stages of gestation showed no histologic evidence of pulmonary trophoblast deportation. This report is the first to document pulmonary trophoblast emboli in cotton rats. This finding suggests that cotton rats may be an alternative animal model for the study of normal and aberrant trophoblast deportation in routine pregnancies and gestational pathologic conditions in women.

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Document Type: Case Report

Affiliations: 1: Department of Veterinary Biosciences, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA; Department of Comparative Pathology and Mouse Phenotyping Shared Resource, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA. [email protected] 2: Department of Veterinary Biosciences, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA

Publication date: December 1, 2014

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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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