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Comparative pathology and disease survey in Marsupials: a surveillance proposal in the Metatheria infraclass

Grant number: 22/02242-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2022
Effective date (End): February 28, 2026
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Veterinary Medicine - Animal Pathology
Principal Investigator:Jose Luiz Catao Dias
Grantee:Eduardo Ferreira Machado
Host Institution: Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia (FMVZ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


In the Anthropocene era there is a significant increase in diseases affecting wild animals. This situation contributes to the current sixth wave of species extinction and places these animals in a central role as sentinels, reservoirs and disseminators of diseases. The performance of necroscopic and histological exams is recommended as a broad way of detecting and controlling infectious and non-infectious diseases. Marsupials, infraclass Metatheria, are distributed across Oceania and the Americas, play an important ecological role in habitat maintenance, and contain emblematic synanthropic species, such as skunks, which act as reservoirs of diseases that impact animal and human health, such as Spotted Fever and Sarcocystosis. The project "Epidemiological and laboratory surveillance of wild fauna: potential of emergency and reemergence of infectious diseases", based in the state of São Paulo and carried out by the Instituto Adolfo Lutz, is a pioneer in the country and aims to carry out surveillance of pathogens in mammals and wild birds in the state based on histopathological, immunohistochemical and RT-PCR/PCR tests. The samples used in the aforementioned program come from centers intended for the screening and rehabilitation of wild fauna and animal health surveillance services in municipalities in the state of São Paulo. Considering the expressive scarcity of information available on the health of Marsupials, mainly neotropical ones, this study intends to compose a survey and morpho-etiological characterization of the main injuries and diseases that affect Marsupials, both in the wild and those kept under human care. With the execution of complementary exams in selected cases and emphasis on the detection of infectious agents, through the partnership between the Adolfo Lutz Institute and LAPCOM-USP. (AU)

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