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Biologically threatened dolphins and whales

Authors

  • Giovanni Di Guardo,

    Corresponding author
    1. University of Teramo, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Comparative Biomedical Sciences, 64100 Teramo, Italy
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  • Sandro Mazzariol,

    1. University of Padova, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Public Health, Comparative Pathology and Veterinary Hygiene, 35020 Legnaro (Padova), Italy
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  • Antonio Fernández

    1. University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Veterinary School, Department of Histology and Pathology and Institute for Animal Health, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands, Spain
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E-mail gdiguardo@unite.it; Tel. ++39-(0)861-266933; Fax ++39-(0)861-266865.

Summary

Among the several threats to which free-ranging cetaceans are exposed, a number of biological noxae are believed to represent a serious hazard to their health and conservation on a global scale, with special emphasis on the Mediterranean Sea. These pathogens include viral agents such as Morbillivirus, which during the last 25 years have caused dramatic epidemics and die-offs among several aquatic mammal species and populations worldwide, as well as Herpesvirus, protozoan agents such as Toxoplasma gondii and bacterial pathogens such as Brucella spp.

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