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Cause of Colo’s Death Revealed

The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium has released information obtained through a necropsy done after legendary gorilla Colo died in her sleep at 60-years-old.

The necropsy confirmed to officials that her death was related to her age and was the result of a heart attack.

A summary of the results showed Colo was impacted by:

  • Myocardial fibrosis, especially significant in the conduction pathways, which likely resulted in a heart attack.
  • Marked renal disease consistent with age related degeneration.
  • Previously removed mass – no evidence of recurrence or metastasis.
  • Respiratory system – mild to moderate airway inflammation, but not likely a contributor to her death (she was on antibiotics at the time of death).
  • Atherosclerosis – not common in gorillas but consistent with her age.
  • Uterine leiomyomas (fibroids).
  • Myocardial fibrosis, especially significant in the conduction pathways, which likely resulted in a fatal arrhythmia.

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