Adult-onset, chronic, cyclic thrombocytopenia in a Rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta) after dengue virus vaccination and viral challenge

Galit H. Frydman, Kelly A. Metcalf Pate, Robert P. Marini, Armelle M. de Laforcade, Irene Bosch, Vasudevan Bakthavatchalu, Sureshkumar Muthupalani, Alton G. Swennes, Claire E. Lyons, Ronald G. Tompkins, James G. Fox

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


An 8-year-old, male Rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta), previously used for dengue virus (DENV) vaccine research with viral challenge, was presented with adult-onset, chronic, cyclic thrombocytopenia. Platelet number, morphology, and function were evaluated by automated hematology, peripheral blood smears, electron microscopy, flow cytometry, and impedance aggregometry. Bone marrow was evaluated by cytology. Both serum anti-dengue nonstructural protein 1 (NS1) antibodies and anti-platelet antibodies were detected by ELISA. Platelet characterization showed a lack of aggregation to all agonists (ADP, ASP, and collagen), increased activation with increased expression of surface marker (HLA-ABC), and an absence of surface receptor GPIX during clinical episodes of petechiae and ecchymoses, even in the presence of normal platelet counts. Bone marrow aspirates identified potential mild megakaryocytic hypoplasia. All platelet functions and morphologic attributes were within normal limits during clinically normal phases. Presence of anti-dengue NS1 serum antibodies confirmed a positive DENV titer 8 years postvaccination. Based on the history and clinical findings, a primary differential diagnosis for this chronic, cyclic platelet pathology was autoimmune platelet destruction with potential bone marrow involvement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-247
Number of pages10
JournalVeterinary Clinical Pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2017


  • Autoimmune
  • ITP
  • nonhuman primate
  • platelets

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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