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Echocardiography parameters of clinically normal adult captive chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

Meg M. SleeperDepartment of Clinical Studies-Philadelphia, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104.

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Ken DrobatzDepartment of Clinical Studies-Philadelphia, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104.

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D. Richard LeeCharles River Insourcing Solutions, Alamogordo Primate Facility, Bldg 1303, PO Box 956, Holloman Air Force Base, NM 88330.

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Michael L. LammeyCharles River Insourcing Solutions, Alamogordo Primate Facility, Bldg 1303, PO Box 956, Holloman Air Force Base, NM 88330.

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Abstract

Objective—To generate reference ranges for echocardiographic variables in clinically normal adult chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes).

Design—Retrospective cohort study.

Animals—88 clinically normal adult chimpanzees.

Procedures—Echocardiographic data obtained between 2002 and 2011 from chimpanzees at the Alamogordo Primate Facility were reviewed (263 echocardiograms obtained from 158 individuals). Data from clinically normal individuals (33 females and 55 males) were analyzed. Basic cardiac parameters measured in all individuals included aortic root diameter and left atrial diameter in the short and long axis during diastole. Left ventricular measurements included left ventricular internal diameter in systole and diastole and diastolic septal and posterior wall thickness. The E point to septal separation was also measured. Spectral Doppler measurements included the peak flow velocity of the pulmonary artery and aorta and diastolic transmitral flow. The presence of arrhythmias was also noted.

Results—Standard echocardiographic findings for a large group of adult female and male chimpanzees were obtained. Female and male chimpanzees were grouped by age in 10-year blocks, and echocardiographic findings were analyzed statistically by 10-year block. In male chimpanzees, cardiac arrhythmias were noted to increase with age.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Cardiovascular disease is an important cause of morbidity and death in captive chimpanzees; however, basic echocardiographic measurements from a large cohort of clinically normal animals have not previously been reported. The number of animals in the present study was insufficient to generate reference ranges; however, data from a large cohort of clinically normal animals are presented. This information will be useful for veterinarians working in clinical and research settings with this species.

Abstract

Objective—To generate reference ranges for echocardiographic variables in clinically normal adult chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes).

Design—Retrospective cohort study.

Animals—88 clinically normal adult chimpanzees.

Procedures—Echocardiographic data obtained between 2002 and 2011 from chimpanzees at the Alamogordo Primate Facility were reviewed (263 echocardiograms obtained from 158 individuals). Data from clinically normal individuals (33 females and 55 males) were analyzed. Basic cardiac parameters measured in all individuals included aortic root diameter and left atrial diameter in the short and long axis during diastole. Left ventricular measurements included left ventricular internal diameter in systole and diastole and diastolic septal and posterior wall thickness. The E point to septal separation was also measured. Spectral Doppler measurements included the peak flow velocity of the pulmonary artery and aorta and diastolic transmitral flow. The presence of arrhythmias was also noted.

Results—Standard echocardiographic findings for a large group of adult female and male chimpanzees were obtained. Female and male chimpanzees were grouped by age in 10-year blocks, and echocardiographic findings were analyzed statistically by 10-year block. In male chimpanzees, cardiac arrhythmias were noted to increase with age.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Cardiovascular disease is an important cause of morbidity and death in captive chimpanzees; however, basic echocardiographic measurements from a large cohort of clinically normal animals have not previously been reported. The number of animals in the present study was insufficient to generate reference ranges; however, data from a large cohort of clinically normal animals are presented. This information will be useful for veterinarians working in clinical and research settings with this species.

Contributor Notes

Dr. Lee's present address is Washington National Primate Research Center, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195.

Address correspondence to Dr. Sleeper (sleeper@vet.upenn.edu).