Pulmonary Veno-Occlusive Disease: A Newly Recognized Cause of Severe Pulmonary Hypertension in Dogs

Williams, K and Andrie, K and Cartoceti, A and French, S and Goldsmith, D and Jennings, S and Priestnall, S L and Wilson, D and Jutkowitz, A (2016) Pulmonary Veno-Occlusive Disease: A Newly Recognized Cause of Severe Pulmonary Hypertension in Dogs. VETERINARY PATHOLOGY, 53 (4). pp. 813-22.

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Abstract

Pulmonary hypertension is a well-known though poorly characterized disease in veterinary medicine. In humans, pulmonary veno-occlusive disease (PVOD) is a rare cause of severe pulmonary hypertension with a mean survival time of 2 years without lung transplantation. Eleven adult dogs (5 males, 6 females; median age 10.5 years, representing various breeds) were examined following the development of severe respiratory signs. Lungs of affected animals were evaluated morphologically and with immunohistochemistry for alpha smooth muscle actin, desmin, CD31, CD3, CD20, and CD204. All dogs had pulmonary lesions consistent with PVOD, consisting of occlusive remodeling of small- to medium-sized pulmonary veins, foci of pulmonary capillary hemangiomatosis (PCH), and accumulation of hemosiderophages; 6 of 11 dogs had substantial pulmonary arterial medial and intimal thickening. Ultrastructural examination and immunohistochemistry showed that smooth muscle cells contributed to the venous occlusion. Increased expression of CD31 was evident in regions of PCH indicating increased numbers of endothelial cells in these foci. Spindle cells strongly expressing alpha smooth muscle actin and desmin co-localized with foci of PCH; similar cells were present but less intensely labeled elsewhere in non-PCH alveoli. B cells and macrophages, detected by immunohistochemistry, were not co-localized with the venous lesions of canine PVOD; small numbers of CD3-positive T cells were occasionally in and around the wall of remodeled veins. These findings indicate a condition in dogs with clinically severe respiratory disease and pathologic features resembling human PVOD, including foci of pulmonary venous remodeling and PCH.