Detection of canine distemper virus in bone cells in the metaphyses of distemper-infected dogs
Mee, A.P.; Webber, D.M.; May, C.; Bennett, D.; Sharpe, P.T.; Anderson, D.C.
Journal of Bone and Mineral Research the Official Journal of the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research 7(7): 829-834
In the light of recent evidence implicating canine distemper virus (CDV) as a possible etiologic agent in Paget's disease of bone, we thought that it would be of interest to examine distemper-infected bone in the natural host. Samples from the long bones, spleen, and bladder of four distemper-infected and three uninfected dogs were examined for the presence of CDV nucleocapsid and phosphoprotein genes and the measles virus (MV) nucleocapsid gene using the technique of in situ hybridization with radioactively labeled riboprobes. Two of the four distemper-infected dogs showed strongly positive hybridization with both of the CDV probes. The signal was present in marrow cells, in osteoblasts, in osteocytes, and particularly in osteoclasts. No hybridization was seen over the cartilage cells of the growth plate, and there was a clear line of demarcation at the point of invasion of osteoclasts and vascularization. The spleen and bladder samples from infected dogs also showed positive hybridization. There was no hybridization with the MV probe in any of the distemper-infected tissue. Samples from the uninfected dogs showed no evidence of hybridization with either the CDV or MV probes. These results show that CDV can infect bone cells of the natural host and provide further support for the theory that CDV may play a role in human Paget's disease of bone.