ISSN 2398-2985      

Ferret systemic coronavirus

4ferrets

Synonym(s): FRSCV, FSCV, Granulomatous inflammatory syndrome, Systemic granulomatous inflammatory syndrome (SGIS), Ferret FIP


Introduction

 
  • Cause: ferret systemic coronavirus is an emerging immune-mediated disease syndrome in ferrets characterized by granulomatous lesions induced by coronavirus infection (ferret coronavirurs genotype 1).
  • Signs: it closely resembles the 'dry form' of feline infectious peritonitis (FIP); diarrhea, lethargy, anorexia, fever, weight loss, mesenteric lymphadenopathy, splenomegaly, hindimb weakness, seizures.
  • Diagnosis: clinical signs, hematology/serum chemistries/protein electrophoresis, radiography, ultrasonography, histopathology.
  • Treatment: no known cure. Symptomatic treatment and supportive care. Most management recommendations are derived from protocols used in cats.
  • Prognosis: grave.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • FRSCV is caused by a coronavirus (ferret coronavirus genotype 1) that may be a mutated form of the virus that causes ferret epizootic catarrhal enteritis Epizootic catarrhal enteritis, or ferret enteric coronavirus (FRECV).
  • In cats, the mutation (which allows the virus to invade and replicate in macrophages) is generally believed to occur individually in each affected animal.  It is unknown if the same is true in ferrets.
  • Most clinical signs are caused not by the virus itself, but by the marked immune response that it elicits.
  • Many affected animals are febrile on presentation, and histopathology generally reveals multifocal pyogranulomatous inflammation affecting multiple organ systems.
Print off the Owner factsheet on Diarrhea to give to your clients.

Predisposing factors

General

  • Young animals, particularly those undergoing stress such as early weaning, early neutering, overcrowded breeding colonies, pet shops, rescue centers, transportation, etc.
  • More common when young ferrets are in or originate from shelters, breeding facilities, large pet shops, etc.

Specific

  • Infection with ferret coronavirus genotype 1.

Pathophysiology

  • Progressive systemic pyogranulomatous disease which resembles the dry form of feline infectious peritonitis.
  • Pathogenesis not fully understood.
  • It is likely that ferrets develop a strong cell-mediated immune response, similar to that in cats with granulomatous FIP, that predisposes them to granulomatous FSCV.

Timecourse

  • It is a chronic disease, but life-span after diagnosis is usually 2-3 months but may be days to several years.
  • In one study an incubation period of at least 5 months was estimated.

Epidemiology

  • Transmission via feco-oral route.
  • More common in multi-ferret households, breeding colonies, rescue centers, pet shops, etc.
  • Many ferrets are produced in a commercial breeding facility and are infected with FRECV while still with their jills.
  • It is prudent to isolate affected animals.
  • The disease was initially reported in 2004 and cases were commonly seen in affected geographical areas. However, the incidence of the disease today is reduced and it has become enzootic in some areas, probably as a result of ferrets developing some form of immunity.

Diagnosis

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to obtain ten tokens to view any ten Vetlexicon articles, images, sounds or videos, or Login

Treatment

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to obtain ten tokens to view any ten Vetlexicon articles, images, sounds or videos, or Login

Prevention

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to obtain ten tokens to view any ten Vetlexicon articles, images, sounds or videos, or Login

Outcomes

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to obtain ten tokens to view any ten Vetlexicon articles, images, sounds or videos, or Login

Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Wills S E, Beaufrère H H, Brisson B A, Fraser R S & Smith D A (2018) Pancreatitis and systemic coronavirus infection in a ferret (Mustela putorius furo). Comp Med 68 (3), 208-211 PubMed.
  • Lindemann D M, Eshar D, Schumacher L L, Almes K M & Rankin A J (2016) Pyogranulomatous panophthalmitis with systemic coronavirus disease in a domestic ferret (Mustela putorius furo). Vet Ophthal 19 (2), 167-171 PubMed.
  • Autieri C R, Miller C L, Scott K E et al (2015) Systemic coronaviral disease in 5 ferrets. Comp Med 65 (6), 508–516 PubMed.
  • Lescano J, Quevedo M, Gonzales‐Viera O et al (2015) First case of systemic coronavirus infection in a domestic ferret (Mustela putorius furo) in Peru. Transbound Emerg Dis 62 (6), 581-585 PubMed.
  • Shigemoto J, Muraoka Y, Wise A G, Maes R K & Shidow T (2014) Two cases of systemic coronavirus-associated disease resembling feline infectious peritonitis in domestic ferrets in Japan. J Exotic Pet Med 23 (2), 196-200 PubMed.
  • Dominguez E, Novellas R, Moya A et al (2011) Abdominal radiographic and ultrasonographic findings in ferrets with systemic coronavirus infection. Vet Rec 169 (9), 231 PubMed.
  • Murray J, Kiupel M & Maes R K (2010) Ferret coronavirus-associated diseases. Vet Clin North Am Exot Anim Prac 13 (3), 543-560 PubMed
  • Garner M M, Ramsell K, Morera N, Juan-Salles C et al (2008) Clinicopathologic features of a systemic coronavirus-associated disease resembling feline infectious peritonitis in the domestic ferret. Vet Pathol 45 (2), 236-246 PubMed.
  • Martínez J, Reinacher M, Perpiñán D et al (2008) Identification of group 1 coronavirus antigen in multisystemic granulomatous lesions in ferrets (Mustela putorius furo). J Comp Pathol 138 (1), 54-58 PubMed.
  • Perpiñán D & López C (2008) Clinical aspects of systemic granulomatous inflammatory syndrome in ferrets (Mustela putorius furo). Vet Rec 162 (6), 180-184 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Hoefer H L (2021) Gastrointestinal Diseases of Ferrets. In: Ferrets, Rabbits, and Rodents Clinical Medicine and Surgery. 4th edn. Eds: Quesenberry K E, Orcutt C J, Mans C & Carpenter J W. Elsevier, USA. pp 27-38. 
  • Swisher S & Lennox A M (2017) Disorders of the Haemic, Immunological and Lymphatic Systems. In: Ferret Medicine and Surgery. Ed: Johnson-Delaney C A. CRC Press, USA. pp 237-258.
  • Kiupel M & Perpiñán D (2014) Viral Diseases of Ferrets. In: Biology and Diseases of the Ferret. 3rd edn. Eds: Fox J G & Marini R P. Wiley-Blackwell, USA. pp 439-517.
  • Mayer J, Erdman S E & Fox J G (2014) Diseases of the Hematopoietic System. In: Biology and Diseases of the Ferret. 3rd edn. Eds: Fox J G & Marini R P. Wiley-Blackwell, USA. pp 311-334.

Organisation(s)

Can’t find what you’re looking for?

We have an ever growing content library on Vetlexicon so if you ever find we haven't covered something that you need please fill in the form below and let us know!

 
 
 
 

To show you are not a Bot please can you enter the number showing adjacent to this field

 Security code