Infection with the obligatory intra-erythrocytic anaplasma-like rickettsia Aegyptianella pullorum in 4-week old
broilers at a moderate altitude of 1 200 m produced a significant increase in the mean relative right ventricular
(RV) mass (RV : TV) from 0,23 in the controls to 0,31 in the infected group. This was accompanied by an
increase in the number of birds suffering from severe RV hypertrophy from 14,3 % in the controls to 50 % in the
Pulmonary hypertension and subsequent RV hypertrophy could have been caused by the severe anaemia
experienced in the course of the infection or by metabolic or biochemical action of A. pullorum. As the agent
does not occur on commercial broiler farms, it cannot play a practical role in the broiler ascites syndrome.
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