1) General Zoological Data
There are five members of the black and white colobus monkeys (Nowak, 1999), of which the Guereza (Colobus guereza) is perhaps the most widely studied species. The name "colobus" derives from the Greek 'kolobos', meaning docked or mutilated, because of the very short or absent thumb (Gotch, 1979). The variability of short digits in various primates is further discussed by Tague (2002).
The Angolan colobus monkey is widely distributed in several countries of East Africa. They are large, leaf-eating primates whose complex, subdivided stomach is specialized to produce fatty acids from the exclusively gastric leaf fermentation. These large monkeys have a beautiful black and white plumage, while newborns are a pure white. The plumage has led to an extensive fur trade with marked reduction of all populations. The animals live in small family groups although larger aggregations have been observed. There is good evidence of chimpanzee hunting of these animals.
The phylogeny of the colobinae has been described in detail by Groves (1970). In his discussion of the "forgotten leaf-eaters", Groves links the Asiatic and Indian forms (Pygathrix, Rhinopithecus, Nasalis, etc.) together with the African forms in part because of their gastric peculiarities, their limb structure, nasal and skull features. Moreover, most have 2n=44, with very similar chromosomes (a few have 2=48). They would all appear to be closely related forms. DNA studies conducted by Page et al. (1999) also suggest a division of the Asian from the African colobinae.
Many zoos now keep these leaf-eating primates that were once thought to be problematic for zoos. The dietary constraints are perhaps the most important problems encountered, as Hollihn (1973) pointed out.
Adult and young Colobus guereza monkeys at San Diego Zoo's Wild Animal Park.
|Subadult Angolan colobus monkey at San Diego Zoo.|
|Newborn male colobus monkey. Note the congested face of the, normally white, newborn due to his face presentation in labor.|
longevity of C. angolensis is around 17 years, according to Jones
General Gestational Data
General Characterization of the Placenta
placenta of a term male neonate was last available. The mother had labored
all night, was exhausted and for that reason a Cesarean section was performed;
a face presentation was found. The male neonate died shortly after birth.
It weighed 750 g, and measured 23 cm in CR length. The placenta had two
disks that were connected by four blood vessels running in the membranes
on both sides of the uterus. It weighed 129 g (one disk 67 g, the other
62 g). They measured 10 x 9 x 1 cm and 9 x 8x 1 cm respectively. There were
several infarcts as is a common finding in cercopithecids (see chapters
on Douc langur and Guenons). The first two placentas of this table, however,
were free of infarcts. The short umbilical cord was inserted centrally on
the smaller disk.The last placenta was monodiscoid and had a relatively long cord.
This is a hemochorial placenta with identical histological features as seen in Douc langurs, macacs and other cercopithecidae. It is superficially invasive.
|Monodiscoid placenta of Angolan Colobus monkey.|
|The fetal surface of the delivered placenta of this stillborn animal with two lobes.|
|Maternal surface of the two lobes. The yellow-white infracts are scattered in both lobes.|
Details of fetal/maternal barrier
Cercopithecidae, as the colobus monkey, have a villous hemochorial placenta with the tertiary villi constructed very much like those of humans. They are covered by syncytium, beneath which resides a layer of cytotrophoblast. Mitoses are only seen in the cytotrophoblast; they are absent in the syncytium. The "anchoring villi" at the maternal base of the placenta are connected by "extravillous trophoblast" (also referred to as "X-cells") that produces major basic protein. In the connective tissue of the villi are a few macrophages ("Hofbauer cells"). The extravillous trophoblast infiltrates superficially into the decidua basalis.
|Fetal surface of the placenta with loosely attached amnion and fetal vessels in the chorion.|
|Marginal portion of term colobus placenta with infarct and intervillous thrombus.|
|This is the maternal surface with the placental implantation. The large number of invasive extravillous trophoblast ("X-cells") attaches to the basal endometrium.|
|Low-power microscopic appearance of a section of this delivered placenta.|
|Margin of the placenta with focal old retroplacental hematoma and marginal infarct.|
|"Anchoring" villi with extravillous trophoblast that attach villi to the decidua below.|
|Major stem villus at left. The darkly-stained cells are the syncytiotrophoblast cells.|
|6) Umbilical cord|
|Cross section of umbilical cord with two arteries and one vein.|
fetus' umbilical cord was only 3.5 cm long and it was not spiraled. Surely,
however, much more cord was present originally and was not submitted for
study. The cord contained two arteries and one vein. There were no remnants
of ducts. The longest cord measured was 47.6 cm long.
8) Extraplacental membranes
|Fetal placental surface showing the loose attachment of the amnion to the chorion and the decidua capsularis and some extravillous trophoblast. As in other cercopithecidae, there are no atrophied villi as seen in human membranes.|
|Mural thrombosis in connecting vessels between the disks.|
|Mural thrombi in membranous connecting vessels.|
"free" membranes of colobus monkey placentas lack the atrophic
villi seen in human gestations. There is, however, an extensive decidua
capsularis. Four large fetal blood vessels spanned from one lobe to the
other in the membranous chorion. The amnion is avascular and loosely attached
to the chorionic membrane. It is possible that the mural thrombi observed
in these connecting membranous vessels of this placenta are the result of
pressure by the fetus upon these blood vessels.
Trophoblast external to barrier
|This shows a typical placental infarct of villous tissue.|
|Intervillous thrombi are common and contain fetal and maternal blood.|
|At left is normal placental tissue, at right is one of the infarcts.|
|Fetal surface with mild inflammatory infiltration of the chorion.|
|Marked leukocytic infiltration of the decidua capsularis on the membranes.|
I know of no relevant data
18) Other remarks - What additional Information is needed?
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Benirschke, K. and Miller, C.J.: Anatomical and functional differences in the placenta of primates. Biol. Reprod. 26:29-53 1982.
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Gotch, A.F.: Mammals - Their Latin Names Explained. Blandford Press, Poole, Dorset, 1979.
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Griner, L.A.: Pathology of Zoo Animals. Zoological Society of San Diego, San Diego, California, 1983.
Groves, C.P.: The forgotten leaf-eaters, and the phylogeny of the colobinae. Pp. 555-586, in: Old World Monkeys. Evolution, Systematics and Behavior. Napier & Napier, eds. Academic Press, NY, 1970.
Hollihn, U: Remarks on the breeding and maintenance of Colobus monkeys Colobus guereza, Proboscis monkeys Nasalis larvatus and Douc langurs Pygathrix nemaeus in zoos. Intern. Zoo Yearb. 13:185-188, 1973.
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Jones, M.: Personal communication, 1977.
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