New study : Endometriosis found in cynomolgus monkeys

A monkey eating a grape

So, we recently wrote about Endometriosis being found in two mandrillus sphinx.  Last year we learned about Endo being found in a German Shephard.  Well, today we read about it being found in monkeys: cynomolgus monkeys.  This is not the first time Endometriosis has been found in this breed of monkey, but we’re going to focus on just this new study today.

There are roughly 1,500 – 2,000 cynomolgus monkeys living in the breeding colony of the of the Tsukuba Primate Research Center in Japan, and it boasts of 200 newborns each year.  Eight of these monkeys received ultrasounds and examinations which led the facility to believe they may of Endometriosis.  Each of these monkeys was raised at the facility.  They were between 5-21 years old.  Half of them had given birth; the other half had never been pregnant.   They had always been fed daily “commercially-prepared monkey chow” and 100g of apple.  Two of them had received embryo transfer procedures and some had cysts drained (which showed up in routine ultrasound scans).  The study does not discuss any further type of symptom suppression treatment.

Unfortunately, all eight of these monkeys perished.  Three of those were found dead between 2005 – 2011; the remaining five were euthanized due to their declining state of health.  All eight monkeys received autopsies and confirmed diagnoses of Endometriosis.  A diagnosis “which was considered the cause of death or deterioration of the general condition of the animals.”  Four of the monkeys had Endometriomas (chocolate cysts) on their ovaries, uterus, or other pelvic organs.  They also had adhesions (scar tissue) and Endometriosis lesions throughout their pelvic cavity.  Some were found to have Endometriosis lesions in their Pouch of Douglas, colon, and colonic muscle tissue.   The two monkeys that had Endo lesions in their colon were also found to have Endometriosis lesions within their lymph nodes.  Three of the monkeys were also found to suffer from Adenomyosis.

The data on each of these eight monkeys showed they had the following symptoms while they were menstruating:

  • decreased food consumption (all 8)
  • no bowel movements (6 monkeys)
  • loose bowel movements (7 monkeys)
  • loose bowel movements with blood (1 monkey)
  • bloating (4 monkeys)
  • vomiting (1 monkey)
  • enlarged or irregular uterus (5 monkeys)

The authors hope that further study of Endometriosis in Cynomolgus monkeys will help us better understand the disease in humans.  I just feel so awful for the animals that suffer with this illness.  We at least have a voice and can seek medical care (well, most of us).  And truly knowing that this disease has such a widespread effect on many, many species on this planet just makes it all the uglier.


Human Reproduction – (Article; Sept. 2016) Characteristics of Histologically Confirmed Endometriosis in Cynomolgus Monkeys

~ Again, I am a layman.  I do not hold any college degrees, nor mastery of knowledge.  Please take what I say with a grain of salt.  If curious, do your own research 😉 Validate my writings.  Or challenge them.  And ALWAYS feel free to consult with your physician. Always.  Yours ~ Lisa

7 thoughts on “New study : Endometriosis found in cynomolgus monkeys

        1. I do remember 🙂 And I’m still up for it! You can email me whatever questions you’d like. 😀 Life is a bit hectic these next few weeks with pending surgery. But I’ll answer all when I can 😀


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