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Hereditary regional dermal asthenia in three Brazilian Quarter horses
Dermal asthenia is described in several species and is known to be a congenital dysplasia of the connective tissue. Diagnosis is not too difficult if one deals with a generalized problem. But what if the problem is only regional? A very interesting study on three related Quarter horses, focussing on clinical and histopathological findings!

Hereditary equine regional dermal asthenia belongs to a group of inherited, congenital connective tissue dysplasias usually described as hyperelastosis cutis, cutaneous asthenia, dermatosparaxis, or EhlersDanlos-like syndrome.

This report presents the clinical and histological features of three related Quarter horses affected with regional dermal asthenia.

These horses had bilateral asymmetric lesions of the trunk and lumbar regions, where the skin was hyperextensible.

Handling of the skin elicited a painful response and superficial trauma led to skin wounds.

The skin was thinner than normal in the affected areas, with thickened borders and harder fibrotic masses (pseudotumours).

The histopathological findings included thinner and smaller collagen fibrils, and a loose arrangement of collagen fibres in the middle, adventitial and deep dermis. Masson`s trichrome and Calleja stains did not reveal any abnormality of collagen and elastic fibres.

Electron microscopy showed no abnormalities. As in human patients, pseudotumour histopathological findings included fibroplasia and neovascularization.

The pedigree chart of these animals supports an autosomal recessive type of inheritance, which has been suggested by other studies.

This is the first report of this disease in Brazil. Its clinical and histological features resemble those described in horses affected with this condition in the United States.


Source: BORGES, ALEXANDRE S., CONCEIÇÃO, LISSANDRO G., ALVES, ANA L. G., FABRIS, VICIANY E. & PESSOA, MARCELO A. (2005): Hereditary equine regional dermal asthenia in three related Quarter horses in Brazil. In: Veterinary Dermatology 16 (2), 125-130.





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