Characteristics of Bovine Lymphoma Caused by Bovine Leukemia Virus Infection in Holstein-Friesian Dairy Cattle in Korea

  • Yoon, S.S. (National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service) ;
  • Bae, Y.C. (National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service) ;
  • Lee, K.H. (National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service) ;
  • Han, B. (College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University) ;
  • Han, H.R. (College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University)
  • Received : 2004.10.17
  • Accepted : 2005.01.20
  • Published : 2005.05.01


The frequency and distribution of lymphoma caused by bovine leukemia virus (BLV) infection in various organs were investigated. Lymphoma samples were obtained from slaughtered cattle or from cattle submitted to the National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service, Korea. Thirty female Holstein-Friesian dairy cattle aged over three years with the BLV-associated lymphoma were studied. None of the Korean native cattle (Hanwoo) had lymphoma in this study however. Lymphoma tissues were gray to pink in color, soft in consistency, and bulged from the cut surface. In advanced lymphoma tissues, there was great variety in the appearance of involved structures due to hemorrhage, necrosis, and/or calcification. Neoplastic tissues were observed in lymph nodes in all lymphoma cases. Intestine (96.4%), heart (88.9%), stomach (73.1%), and diaphragm (62.5%) were frequently involved with lymphoma. However, there was no lymphoma detected in liver. Large neoplastic masses, sometimes reaching the size of over 20 cm, were found in the abdominal cavities. It is suggested that metastasis of lymphomas occurs mainly via lymph based on gross observations; neoplasia may have been initiated in the serosal surface of the lung, heart, peritoneum, and numerous hollow organs in the abdominal cavity. Also many organs in the abdominal and thoracic cavity were affected by neoplastic tissues simultaneously. Characteristics observed in this study could be used as criteria to differentiate BLV-associated lymphoma from other nodular lesions in the slaughterhouse and as fundamental data to make clear the mechanism of metastasis or pathogenesis of EBL.


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