Veterinary Physiology

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Pyelonephritis and Polycystic Kidneys in a Male Holstein Calf

Akbar Nikkhah1,*, and Masoud Alimirzaei2

1Chief Highly Distinguished Professor and Nutritional Scientist, National Elites Foundation, Tehran, Iran

2Behroozi Dairy CO., Tehran, Iran


Introduction: Pyelonephritis and cystitis in cattle are urinary tract bacterial infections that can ascend to the kidneys and cause inflammation. This article presenteda rarely-seen clinical kidney complication in a male Holstein calf. This problem was accompanied by respiratory tract infections. Bacterial infection causedbovine pyelonephritis and cystitis and consequently,there wasan inflammation inthe kidneys. A wide range of bacteria wereresponsible for such infections. Case report:A 5-days old male Holstein calf was initially diagnosed with high body temperature (> 40 ̊C), followed byrespiratory signs. Treatment with antibiotics and anti-inflammatory drugs (dexamethasone and gentamicin) beganimmediately after diagnosis of the high body temperature, but the clinical signs,such as appetite loss and cough did not fully disappear. The calf’s growth was hinderedand finally,died at the age of 90 days. Post-mortem necropsy findings includedinflamed and cystic kidneys that coexisted with severe lung infections.Conclusion:The present uncommon renal complication may provide further information about the physiology and pathology of such rare kidney disorders in newborn Holstein calves.

1. Introduction:

Pyelonephritis and cystitis in cattle are bacterial infections that affect the urinary tract and can spread to the kidneys, resulting in inflammation1. Many bacteria,such as Corynebacterium (C.) renale, C. pilosum, andC. cystitidisas well as Escherichiacoli(E. coli) and Streptococcusspp., Proteusspp., and Staphylococcusspp. are responsible for pyelonephritis and cystitis in cattle1. In addition, Mannheimia varigenahas been reported to be a cause of pyelonephritis in Holstein calves2. Stressful conditions,such as parturition, the peak of lactation, also feeding high-protein diets could predispose cattleto bacterial attacks1. Polyuria, hematuria, anorexia, colic, and reduced milk production are common clinical signs in adult animals1. Polycystic kidneys might be a heritable disorder in humanwhich exists in two forms3. The occurrence of congenital polycystic kidneys has been reported in an inbred herd of springbok3. In a studybyInversonet al., all animals with polycystic kidneys had cystic dilatation of the bile duct3. Polycystic kidneys in springboks’ neonates has been also reported in the literature4. It seems that mutation in genes involved in the regulation of the renal tubular epithelial cells plays an important role in the development of polycystic kidneys in both humans and animals4. With regard to the environmentaland genetic origin of the kidney disorders, observing the kidney complications in a male Holstein calf in the current report may provide insight into diagnosing and preventing such fetal diseases in dairy herds.

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