Twenty-five of 72 calves sired by a Simmental bull were affected with a congenital skin disease which appeared to be inherited as an autosomal dominant trait. The affected calves showed hypotrichosis, erythema and breaks in the integrity of the skin. The distribution of the lesions and the ease with which excoriations occurred suggested an abnormal vulnerability to trauma. Mortality was high but in affected survivors the clinical signs moderated with age. Histopathologically, dermoepidermal separation and cytolysis of the germinal cell layer of the epidermis were seen. The name bovine epidermolysis is proposed and a relationship with epidermolysis bullosa simplex of man is suggested.
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