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2006, Vol 1 No 2, Article 7

Clinical Study on Hjarre's Disease in Poultry

Shah, K. A. and Qureshi, S.
Institute of Animal Health and Biological Products, Zakura, Srinagar
Department of Animal Husbandry, Kashmir


Hijarre’s Disease (Coligranuloma) is a disease of adult chicken and turkey, characterized by nodular granulomas in liver, mesentery and walls of intestine. It is caused by Escherichia Coli, a gram -ve , non-acid fast non-spore forming bacillus. Besides coligranuloma, E-coli has more oftenly been incriminated in number of other clinical conditions which include coli bacillosis, coli septicemia, egg peritonitis, arthritis and air saculitis etc. causing decrease in production high mortality rate and condemnation of carcass at slaughter, thereby resulting in major economic losses to the poultry Industry.
Coli granuloma is relatively uncommon coliform disease and may cause mortality as high as 75% in an individual flock (calnek et. al 1991) 
Perusal of literature reveals very meagre information on the occurrence of disease. This communication probably constitutes first report on Hjarre’s disease in Kashmir.


Occurrence of sudden sporadic deaths among adult stock in an organized poultry farm farmed basis for this study. The affected flock was dull, depressed and anorectic, reared on deep litter and had been already vaccinated against new castle disease, Infectious bursal disease and Marek’s disease as well. In order to elucidate cause of mortality, thorough necropsy examination of fresh carcasses was conducted. Morbid material was aseptically collected and subject to culture sensitivity test. Tissue smears were prepared by crushing individual nodules between two glass slides (Randall 1991) and stained with Ziehl-Neelsen staining method (Zahoor 2003).


Pathological lessions detected at necropsy were pathognomic for coli granuloma. These included, coagulation necrosis and enlargement of liver, hard nodular granulomas in the mesentry, walls of intestine, particularly cecum congested and swollen spleen with abnormal contours, congested viscera with atrophied bursa normal peripheral nerves and bone marrow corroborating with reports of Calneck et. al 1991, Randall 1991 and Jordan 1990.

Moreover, tissue smears prepared from nodules did not reveal presence of any acid fast bacillus on Ziehl-Neelsen staining, thus ruled out the possibility of Avian tuberculosis. Bacteriological examination of morbid materials carried out in accordance to procedures of Edward and Ewing 1972 and Cruik Shank at. al. 1975 indicated infection with Escherichia coli. Isolate was found resistant to sulfha drugs, cephalaxine, ciprofloxacine, ampicillin and amoxycillin and sensitive to enrofloxacin furazolidons, sparfloxacin ofloxacin and gentamicin showing maximum zone of inhibition for enrofloxacin and minimum for gentamicin. 
E.coli was earlier isolated from coligranuloma and other coliform diseases in domestic birds by Gross (1961), Harry and Hemsley (1965), Bolin (1986), Jordan (1990) and Khursheed and Pampori (2003). 
Enrofloxacin 300 mg per litre of drinking water for 5 days supported with Homeopathic Therapy of 'Thuja' 200x four drops per litre of drinking water prepared in a quantity to be consumed within two hours in morning for twenty days controlled the disease effectively. 
Antibiotics were widely used to combat various types of coliform disease in birds and animals (Cloud et. al. (1985), Philphs and Case (1980), Khursheed and Pampori loc. cit.).
Thuja was reported to be very effective in treatment of warts and tumorous/nodular growths in man (Shah 2003) and animals ( Rai et. al. (1991) and Varshney and Paliwal (2000)).


The author is highly grateful to Joint Director, and staff of Bacteriological Section Institute of Animal Health and Biological Products, Zakura for providing necessary facilities and help.


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