European Brown Hare Syndrome in Wild European Brown Hares

Bhare liver infected by EBHS with periportal and midzonal necrosisillinis, C., Psychas, V., Tontis, D.K., Spyrou, V., Birtsas, P.K., Sofia, M., Likotrafitis, F., Maslarinou, O.M., Kanteres, D., 2005. European brown hare syndrome in wild European brown hares from Greece. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 41, 783-786.

From 1999 to mid-2003, 97 European brown hares (Lepus europaeus) found dead throughout Greece were examined by necropsy, histopathology, and reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) for the presence of European brown hare syndrome (EBHS) and EBHS virus (EBHSV), respectively. Hare losses were sporadic, starting in the cold season and lasting for many months (December to May). The most prominent gross lesions were observed in the liver and included swelling and discoloration; congestion and hemorrhages were present mainly in lungs and tracheal mucosa. Necropsy findings were suggestive of EBHS, which was confirmed by histopathology and RT-PCR. This study documents, for the first time, EBHS in Greece.

Key words: European brown hare syndrome, Greece, histopathological findings, PCR.