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Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the between- and within-dog repeatability of a flow-mediated vasodilation (FMD) measurement technique in healthy dogs.

Animals—43 male and female dogs of various breeds (weight range, 6.9 to 31.7 kg; age range, 11 months to 11 years).

Procedures—5 dogs were used to refine the technique; other dogs were classified as large (> 15 kg) or small (≥ 15 kg) before use in the main study. In each dog, a brachial artery was occluded for 5 minutes by inflating a blood pressure cuff (applied pressure was more than 50 mm Hg greater than that required to occlude flow). Two-dimensional ultrasonographic images of the artery were recorded during a 30-second period prior to cuff inflation (baseline) and during a 3-minute period after cuff deflation by each of 2 sonographers. Relative percentage increases in luminal size from baseline (ie, FMD) were calculated. Independent contributing factors to FMD (eg, body weight, age, and room temperature) were assessed.

Results—Median FMD was significantly greater in small dogs (77%; range, 0% to 19.3%) than it was in large dogs (2.2%; range, −2.2% to 10.6%); values were significantly greater in dogs < 6 years old, compared with dogs > 6 years old. Weight was the only independent contributing factor for FMD. Coefficients of variation for between- and within-dog repeatability were 99.7% and 62.8%, respectively.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Application of the FMD measurement technique used in humans appears to be feasible in dogs and may provide a means of assessing canine endothelial function, although between and within-dog variations were large. (Am J Vet Res 2010;71:1154–1161)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine erythrocyte survival time in Greyhounds.

Animals—6 Greyhounds used as blood donors and 3 privately owned non-Greyhound dogs.

Procedures—In vivo biotinylation of erythrocytes was performed by infusion of biotin—Nhydroxysuccinimide into each dog via a jugular vein catheter. Blood samples were collected 12 hours later and then at weekly intervals and were used to determine the percentage of biotin-labeled erythrocytes at each time point. Erythrocytes were washed, incubated with avidin—fluorescein isothiocyanate, and washed again before the percentage of biotinylated erythrocytes was measured by use of flow cytometry. Survival curves for the percentage of biotinylated erythrocytes were generated, and erythrocyte survival time was defined as the x-intercept of a least squares best-fit line for the linear portion of each curve.

Results—The R for survival curves ranged from 0.93 to 0.99 during the first 10 weeks after infusion of erythrocytes. Erythrocyte survival time for the 3 non-Greyhound dogs was 94, 98, and 116 days, respectively, which was consistent with previously reported values. Erythrocyte survival time for the 6 Greyhounds ranged from 83 to 110 days (mean, 93 days; median, 88 days). As determined by use of in vivo biotinylation, erythrocyte survival times in Greyhounds were similar to those determined for non-Greyhound dogs and did not differ significantly from erythrocyte survival times reported previously for non-Greyhound dogs.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Erythrocyte survival time was similar in Greyhounds and non-Greyhound dogs. Greyhounds can be used as erythrocyte donors without concerns about inherently shorter erythrocyte survival time. (Am J Vet Res 2010;71:1033–1038)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To assess the influence of age on pulmonary hemodynamics and hemorheological properties in healthy dogs.

Animals—14 healthy Beagles.

Procedures—Dogs were placed in 2 age groups as follows: young dogs (≤ 5 years old; n = 8) and old dogs (≥ 8 years old; 6). Hematologic characteristics, plasma total protein and fibrinogen concentrations, and blood viscosity were measured. Systolic time intervals of pulmonary blood flow were recorded by pulsed-wave Doppler echocardiography. Early (E′) and late (A′) diastolic myocardial velocities, isovolumic contraction velocity, and systolic myocardial velocity of the free tricuspid annulus were recorded by pulsed-wave tissue Doppler imaging (TDI). Dogs were anesthetized and pulmonary arterial pressures (PAP) and cardiac output were recorded with a pediatric thermodilution Swan-Ganz catheter.

Results—Hemorheological measurements were not different between the 2 groups. Systolic, mean, and diastolic PAP were higher in old dogs, compared with values in young dogs; this difference was attributed to a high pulmonary vascular resistance and low arterial compliance in old dogs. Systolic time intervals of pulmonary blood flow stayed unchanged. The A′ wave of the free tricuspid annulus was increased in old, compared with that young dogs, and the E′:A′ ratio was decreased. Pulmonary vascular resistance was inversely correlated with compliance.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The age of dogs should be taken into account when interpreting pulmonary hemodynamic results and TDI variables of right ventricular diastolic function.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine the intra- and interobserver variability of systolic arterial pressure (SAP) and diastolic arterial pressure (DAP) measurements obtained with 2 indirect methods in awake dogs and percentage of successful measurements.

Animals—6 healthy conscious adult dogs.

Procedures—4 observers with different levels of training measured SAP and DAP on 4 days by use of Doppler ultrasonography (DU) and high-definition oscillometry (HDO). The examinations were randomized. Measurements for each technique were recorded 5 consecutive times, and mean values (total, 720 measurements) were used for statistical analysis.

Results—All within- and between-day coefficients of variation (CVs) for SAP were < 15% irrespective of the observer or method (HDO, 3.6% to 14.1%; DU, 4.1% to 12.4%). Conversely, half the CVs for DAP were > 15% with the highest within- and between-day CVs obtained by the least experienced observer by use of DU (19.5% and 25.9%, respectively). All attempts with HDO were successful, whereas DAP could not be measured by use of DU by the least experienced observer in 17% of attempts.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—SAP may be assessed in healthy dogs by use of DU and HDO with good repeatability and reproducibility after a short period of training. Conversely, the variability of DAP is higher and longer training is required to assess DAP via DU than via HDO.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To investigate the role of superoxide anions in the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced impairment of β-adrenoceptor-mediated equine digital vein (EDV) vasodilation.

Sample Population—EDVs isolated from forelimbs of 24 healthy adult horses.

Procedures—Endothelium-intact or endothelium-denuded EDV rings were incubated with or without LPS (10 μg/mL) of Escherichia coli (O55:B5) for 4 hours. Cumulative concentration-relaxation curves resulting from administration of isoprenaline, a nonselective β-adrenoceptor agonist, or from administration of SR 58611A, a selective β3-adrenoceptor agonist, were recorded in phenylephrine-preconstricted EDVs in the absence or the presence of superoxide dismutase (200 U/mL). Isoprenaline-induced relaxation was also evaluated with or without the cyclooxygenase inhibitors indomethacin (10μM) and NS-398 (10μM).

Results—Isoprenaline and SR 58611A induced concentration-dependent relaxation of EDV rings, which was inhibited by LPS exposure. Superoxide dismutase abolished the inhibitory effect of LPS on the isoprenaline- and SR 58611A-mediated relaxation. Pretreatment of the LPS-treated EDVs with indomethacin or NS-398 restored the isoprenaline-mediated relaxation and abolished the LPS-induced impairment to a similar extent as superoxide dismutase.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results supported a role of superoxide anions in the LPS-induced impairment of β-adrenoceptor-mediated EDV vasodilation. The LPS-induced oxidative stress in EDVs may contribute to vascular dysfunctions associated with laminitis in horses.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To assess differences in left ventricular contractile indices among dogs of 3 body sizes via 2-D speckle-tracking echocardiography (STE) and to determine body weight–independent systolic variables.

Animals—37 clinically normal adult dogs.

Procedures—Dogs were allocated into 3 groups on the basis of body weight: small (< 7 kg), medium (7 to 20 kg), and large (> 20 kg). Right parasternal short-axis echocardiographic views were acquired to measure conventional M-mode variables (left ventricular internal diameter at end diastole, left ventricular internal diameter at end systole, and fractional shortening [FS]) and STE indices (peak systolic strain, peak systolic strain rate, synchrony time index [STI], peak systolic apical rotation, peak systolic basal rotation, peak apical twisting rate, and peak systolic torsion). Values were compared among the 3 groups.

Results—STE indices, except for peak systolic radial strain (SRad), peak systolic basal rotation, and STI, were significantly decreased in large dogs, compared with values for small and medium dogs. No significant difference was detected in stroke index, peak systolic SRad, and peak systolic basal rotation among the 3 groups. The STI in large dogs was significantly increased, compared with that of medium dogs.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results revealed that decreased systolic indices in large dogs should not be interpreted as signs of decreased systolic function. Increased STI in large dogs may contribute to decreased FS. Because peak systolic SRad was not affected by body weight, peak systolic SRad might be a better variable than FS for assessing systolic function.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine effects of domperidone and acepromazine maleate on microvascular blood flow in digital laminae of clinically normal adult horses.

Animals—8 clinically normal adult horses (4 mares and 4 geldings).

Procedures—In a 4-period crossover study, domperidone was administered PO at 1.1 mg/ kg and 5.5 mg/kg and IV at 0.2 mg/kg; acepromazine was administered IV at 0.04 mg/kg. The washout period between treatments was 1 week. A 3-minute measurement of laminar microvascular blood flow (LMBF) was obtained with laser Doppler flowmetry. Baseline measurements were obtained at −2, −1, and 0 hours prior to administration of drugs. Post-treatment measurements were obtained at 0.5, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, and 12 hours. Percentage change from baseline values in LMBF for each treatment was subsequently calculated.

Results—Oral administration of domperidone at 1.1 mg/kg and 5.5 mg/kg significantly increased LMBF, compared with baseline values, beginning 4 hours after administration, and this effect persisted for at least 8 hours. Intravenous administration of domperidone at 0.2 mg/kg significantly increased LMBF, compared with baseline values, at 10 and 12 hours after administration. Administration of acepromazine (0.04 mg/kg, IV) significantly increased LMBF, compared with baseline values, at 3, 5, 8, and 10 hours after administration. No adverse effects of drugs were detected in any horse.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Domperidone may be useful for preventing vasoconstriction and reduction in LMBF believed to occur in horses with laminitis, but additional research of the drug's effects in horses with laminitis is required.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To map aspects of the innervation of the mitral valve complex and determine any association with the development or progression of myxomatous mitral valve disease (MMVD) in dogs.

Sample Population—Septal mitral valve leaflets from 11 dogs aged 6 months to > 10 years.

Procedures—Expression of protein gene product 9.5 (general neuronal marker), tyrosine hydroxylase (adrenergic innervation marker), vasoactive intestinal peptide (parasympathetic innervation marker), and calcitonin gene–related peptide (sensory innervation marker) was assessed by use of a standard immunohistochemical technique. Innervation was assessed qualitatively and semiquantitatively. Differences between valvular zones and between groups were analyzed statistically.

Results—MMVD was present in leaflets of all dogs ≥ 5 years of age. Innervation was confirmed in all leaflets but was markedly reduced in leaflets of dogs > 10 years of age. Innervation was most dense at the base of valves and mainly associated with the epimysial, perimysial, and endomysial layers of the muscle and blood vessels within the valve. Innervation was reduced within the middle zone of the valve and lacking at the free edge. Innervation was not identified at the tip of the leaflet, the free edge, or the chordae. Nerve fibers were mostly sympathetic, with the remainder being parasympathetic or sensory. Existence of MMVD did not alter the pattern or density of innervation.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Mitral valve leaflets in the study dogs were innervated, with most of the nerve fibers associated with the myocardium in the valve base. Development of MMVD appeared to precede the reduction of innervation associated with advancing age.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To provide insights into the role of prostaglandin F (PGF) in the developmental stages of laminitis induced in horses by ingestion of black walnut heartwood extract (BWHE).

Sample Population—10 adult mixed-breed horses.

Procedures—Horses were separated into 2 groups and were euthanatized at 12 hours after placebo (water) administration (control horses) or after BWHE administration and development of Obel grade 1 laminitis. Blood samples were obtained to determine plasma PGF concentrations hourly for the first 4 hours and subsequently every 2 hours after substance administration. Laminar arteries and veins were isolated, and responses to increasing concentrations of PGF were measured before and after preincubation of blood vessels with prostanoid and thromboxane receptor antagonists SQ 29,548, SC-19220, and AH 6809.

Results—Plasma PGF concentrations increased in horses given BWHE; the WBC count decreased concurrently. In control horses, PGF was a potent contractile agonist for laminar veins but not for laminar arteries. In horses given BWHE, PGF was similarly selective for laminar veins; however, the magnitude of PGF-induced venoconstriction was less than that in control horses. After preincubation with SQ 29,548, laminar veins from control horses responded to PGF with a small degree of dilation, whereas laminar veins from horses given BWHE did not.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—PGF may play a role in the inflammatory and vascular dysfunction associated with the prodromal stages of laminitis. Prostanoids such as PGF may be viable targets for the prevention of acute laminitis in horses.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To compare cardiac troponin I (cTnI) concentrations determined by use of a point-of-care analyzer with values determined by use of a bench-top immunoassay in plasma samples obtained from clinically normal horses with and without experimentally induced cardiac disease, and to establish a reference range for plasma equine cTnI concentration determined by use of the point-of-care analyzer.

Animals—83 clinically normal horses, 6 of which were administered monensin to induce cardiac disease.

Procedures—A blood sample was collected from each of the 83 clinically normal horses to provide plasma for analysis by use of the point-of-care analyzer; some of the same samples were also analyzed by use of the immunoassay. All 83 samples were used to establish an analyzer-specific reference range for plasma cTnI concentration in clinically normal horses. In 6 horses, blood samples were also collected at various time points after administration of a single dose of monensin (1.0 to 1.5 mg/kg) via nasogastric intubation; plasma cTnI concentration in those samples was assessed by use of both methods.

Results—The analyzer-specific reference range for plasma cTnI concentration in clinically normal horses was 0.0 to 0.06 ng/mL. Following monensin treatment in 5 horses, increases in plasma cTnI concentration determined by use of the 2 methods were highly correlated (Pearson correlation, 0.83). Peak analyzer-determined plasma cTnI concentrations in monensin-treated horses ranged from 0.08 to 3.68 ng/mL.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—In horses with and without experimentally induced cardiac disease, the point-of-care analyzer and bench-top immunoassay provided similar values of plasma cTnI concentration.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research