Eleven colobus monkeys (Colobus polykomos) were exhibited as a group in a Louisiana zoo. During one summer, three were either found dead or died after a fulminating illness with lesions of a bacteremia/septicemia. Chromobacterium violaceum was isolated from the liver of one monkey and from multiple organs and blood of another. Lesions observed in all three monkeys were similar and included severe multifocal acute necrotizing hepatitis, myelitis, splenitis, moderate multifocal acute interstitial pneumonia with severe pulmonary edema, and many intralesional bacteria.
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