Anatomopathological changes in canine distemper seropositive dogs and virus detection in sinoatrial nodes


  • José Eugenio Diniz Bastos Universidade Federal de Uberlândia
  • Neide Maria Silva Universidade Federal de Uberlândia
  • Marisol Patrícia Pallete Briceño Universidade Federal de Uberlândia
  • Tais Meziara Wilson Universidade de Brasília
  • Alessandra Aparecida Medeiros-Ronchi Universidade Federal de Uberlândia



Cardiac Conduction System, Canine Distemper Virus, Cardiomyopathy


Canine distemper is a viral disease that affects several systems on dogs, among them, the cardiovascular system. The aim of this study was to identify canine distemper virus (CDV) in the sinoatrial node (SAN) of dogs serologically positive for distemper by Polymerase Chain Reaction preceded by reverse transcription (RT-PCR), and to analyze gross and microscopic changes of distemper in the heart and other tissues. SAN and tissue fragments were collected from 17 serologically positive dead animals, necropsied from October 2015 to December 2016. In the heart, right heart dilatation was observed in 13 dogs (76.47%) and left concentric hypertrophy in two dogs (11.76%). Microscopically, lymphocytic myocarditis was observed in four (23.53%) dogs and 41.18% presented viral inclusion corpuscles of CDV in the bladder epithelium. Only one (5.88%) dog presented a 319 bp target fragment for distemper virus using primers CDV 1 and CDV 2 at the sinoatrial node. In conclusion, CDV can be located in the sinoatrial node of naturally infected dogs, as demonstrated in this study by the RT-PCR technique, reinforcing the hypothesis that CDV is capable of causing inflammatory lesions in the sinoatrial node of this species. Macroscopic and microscopic cardiac changes are frequently observed in dogs with distemper, mainly cardiac dilatation and myocarditis. Viral inclusions of CDV in bladder epithelial cells are an important microscopic finding for the diagnosis of distemper.


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How to Cite

BASTOS, J.E.D.., SILVA, N.M., BRICEÑO, M.P.P.., WILSON, T.M.. and MEDEIROS-RONCHI, A.A.., 2020. Anatomopathological changes in canine distemper seropositive dogs and virus detection in sinoatrial nodes. Bioscience Journal [online], vol. 36, no. 2, pp. 487–495. [Accessed29 February 2024]. DOI 10.14393/BJ-v36n1a2020-42122. Available from:



Agricultural Sciences