SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

vol.76 número3Identification and partial sequencing of a crocodile poxvirus associated with deeply penetrating skin lesions in farmed Nile crocodiles, Crocodylus niloticusPrevalence of bovine cysticercosis and hydatidosis in Jimma municipal abattoir, South West Ethiopia índice de autoresíndice de assuntospesquisa de artigos
Home Pagelista alfabética de periódicos  

Serviços Personalizados



Links relacionados

  • Em processo de indexaçãoCitado por Google
  • Em processo de indexaçãoSimilares em Google


Onderstepoort Journal of Veterinary Research

versão On-line ISSN 2219-0635
versão impressa ISSN 0030-2465

Onderstepoort j. vet. res. vol.76 no.3 Pretoria  2009




Blood platelet counts, morphology and morphometry in lions, Panthera leo



L. du Plessis

Electron Microscope Unit, Department of Anatomy and Physiology, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Pretoria, Onderstepoort, 0110 South Africa




Due to logistical problems in obtaining sufficient blood samples from apparently healthy animals in the wild in order to establish normal haematological reference values, only limited information regarding the blood platelet count and morphology of free-living lions (Panthera leo) is available. This study provides information on platelet counts and describes their morphology with particular reference to size in two normal, healthy and free-ranging lion populations. Blood samples were collected from a total of 16 lions. Platelet counts, determined manually, ranged between 218 and 358 x 109/l. Light microscopy showed mostly activated platelets of various sizes with prominent granules. At the ultrastructural level the platelets revealed typical mammalian platelet morphology. However, morphometric analysis revealed a significant difference (P < 0.001) in platelet size between the two groups of animals. Basic haematological information obtained in this study may be helpful in future comparative studies between animals of the same species as well as in other felids.

Keywords: Counts, lion, microscopy, morphology, morphometry, platelets



“Full text available only in PDF format”




BATH, P.M.W. 1993. The routine measurement of platelet size using sodium citrate alone as the anticoagulant. Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 70:687-690.         [ Links ]

CLINKENBEARD, K.D. & MEINKOTH, J.H. 2000. Normal hematology of the cat, in Schalm's veterinary hematology, 5th ed., edited by B.F. Feldman, J.G. Zinkl & N.C. Jain. New York: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.         [ Links ]

DU PLESSIS. L., BOTHA, A.J. & STEVENS, K. 1996. Ultrastructure of buffalo, Syncerus caffer, platelets: comparison with bovine and human platelets. Journal of Morphology, 229: 309-314.         [ Links ]

DU PLESSIS, L., BOTHA, A.J., REYERS, F. & STEVENS, K. 2004. Blood platelets of the cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus). Zoo Biology, 23:263-271.         [ Links ]

HAWKEY, C.M. 1991. The value of comparative haematological studies. Comparative Haematology International, 1:1-9.         [ Links ]

HAWKEY, C.M., HART, M.G., BENNETT, P.M., GASCOYNE, S.C., KNIGHT, J.A. & KIRKWOOD, J.K. 1990. Diagnostic value of platelet counts in mammals. Veterinary Record, 127: 18.         [ Links ]

HAWKEY, C.M. & HART, M.G. 1986. Haematological reference values for adult pumas, lions, tigers, leopards, jaguars and cheetahs. Research in Veterinary Science, 41 :268-269.         [ Links ]

JAIN, N.C. 1993. Essentials of veterinary hematology. Philadelphia: Lea & Febiger.         [ Links ]

LEVIN, J. & BESSMAN, J.D. 1983. The inverse relationship between platelet volume and platelet number. Journal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine, 101:295-307.         [ Links ]

LUMSDEN, J.H. 2000. Reference values, in Schalm's veterinary hematology, 5th ed., edited by B.F. Feldman, J.G. Zinkl & N.C. Jain. New York: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.         [ Links ]

MACEY, M., AZAM, U., MCCARTHY, D., WEBB, L., CHAPMAN, E.S., OKRONGLY, D., ZELMANOVIC, D. & NEWLAND, A. 2002. Evaluation of the anticoagulants EDTA and citrate, theophylline, adenosine, and dipyridamole (CTAD) for assessing platelet activation on the ADVIA 120 hematology system. Clinical Chemistry, 48:891-899.         [ Links ]

MOORE, D.M. 2000. Hematology of the mouse (Mus musculus), in Schalm's veterinary hematology, 5th ed., edited by B.F. Feldman, J.G. Zinkl & N.C. Jain. New York: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.         [ Links ]

MORITZ, A., FICKENSCHER, Y., MEYER, K., FAILING, K. & WEISS, D.J. 2004. Canine and feline hematology reference values for the Advia 120 hematology system. Veterinary Clinical Pathology, 33:32-38.         [ Links ]

NORMAN, E.J., BARRON, R.C.J., NASH, A.S. & CLAMPITT, R.B. 2001. Prevalence of low automated platelet counts in cats: comparison with prevalence of thrombocytopenia based on blood smear estimation. Veterinary Clinical Pathology, 30:137-140.         [ Links ]

POTHIWONG, W., SAKULWIRA, K., PRACHAMMUANG, P. & VETHCHAGARUN, S. 2006. Observations on the structure of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets in some Felis spp. and Panthera spp. Thai Journal of Veterinary Medicine, 36:55-62.         [ Links ]

SIRIOS, M. 1990. Mammalian blood cell morphology. Part II. Leukocytes and thrombocytes. Veterinary Technician, 11: 465-470.         [ Links ]

TABLIN, F. 2000. Platelet structure and function, in Schalm's veterinary hematology, 5th ed., edited by B.F. Feldman, J.G. Zinkl & N.C. Jain. New York: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.         [ Links ]

ZELMANOVIC, D. & HETHERINGTON, E.J. 1998. Automated analysis of feline platelets in whole blood, including platelet count, mean platelet volume, and activation state. Veterinary Clinical Pathology, 27:2-9.         [ Links ]

ZUCKER-FRANKLIN, D. 1988. Megakaryocytes and platelets, in Atlas of blood cells, function and pathology, edited by D. Zucker-Franklin, M.F. Greaves, C.E. Grossi & A.M. Marmont. Philadelphia: Lea & Febiger.         [ Links ]



Accepted for publication 16 March 2009-Editor



* E-mail:

Creative Commons License Todo o conteúdo deste periódico, exceto onde está identificado, está licenciado sob uma Licença Creative Commons