Objective—To perform respiratory chain enzymatic
activity assays on canine skeletal muscle biopsy specimens
and establish reference range values of skeletal
muscle enzyme activities for dogs.
Sample Population—Biopsy specimens from the
vastus lateralis muscle were obtained from 24 dogs
(8 sexually intact males and 14 sexually intact
females) ranging from 15 months to 6 years of age.
Procedure—Mean values of citrate synthase,
cytochrome-c oxidase, succinate dehydrogenase,
succinate dehydrogenase-cytochrome-c reductase,
nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) dehydrogenase,
and NADH dehydrogenase-cytochrome-c
reductase activities were established by use of 6
standard spectrophotometric assays for respiratory
chain enzyme analysis.
Results—Compared with published data for skeletal
muscle enzyme activities in humans, skeletal muscle
enzyme activities in dogs were 2- to 4-fold higher.
Additionally, citrate synthase activity, a marker for
mitochondrial volume, was positively correlated with
age in dogs, suggesting that mitochondrial volume
increases with age, although no apparent change in
respiratory chain enzymatic activity with an increase
in age was found.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Reference
range values for skeletal muscle enzyme activities of
dogs are needed to accurately interpret results of respiratory
chain enzymatic activity assays. During investigation
of metabolic myopathies, if skeletal muscle
biopsy specimens are evaluated for respiratory chain
enzyme kinetics, they should be performed and evaluated
in concert with skeletal muscle biopsy specimens
from clinically normal animals of the same
species. (Am J Vet Res 2004;65:480–484)
Case Description—15 llamas and 34 alpacas between 3 weeks and 18 years old with fecal oocysts or intestinal coccidial stages morphologically consistent with Eimeria macusaniensis were examined. Nineteen of the camelids were admitted dead, and 30 were admitted alive. Camelids admitted alive accounted for 5.5% of all camelid admissions during this period.
Clinical Findings—Many severely affected camelids had signs of lethargy, weight loss, decreased appetite, and diarrhea. Camelids with clinical infection also commonly had evidence of circulatory shock, fat mobilization, and protein loss. Nonsurviving camelids also had evidence of shock, edema, bile stasis, renal insufficiency, hepatic lipidosis, muscle damage, relative hemoconcentration, and sepsis. Postmortem examination frequently re-vealed complete, segmental replacement of the mucosa of the distal portion of the jejunum with coccidial meronts and gamonts. For 17 of 42 camelids, results of initial fecal examinations for E macusaniensis were negative.
Treatment and Outcome—Most camelids admitted alive were treated with amprolium hydrochloride, plasma, and various supportive treatments. Fifteen of the 30 treated camelids died or were euthanized.
Clinical Relevance—Findings suggest that E macusaniensis may be an important gastrointestinal tract pathogen in camelids of all ages. Clinical signs were frequently nonspecific and were often evident before results of fecal examinations for the parasite were positive. As with other coccidia, severity of disease was probably related to ingested dose, host immunity, and other factors. The clinical and herd relevance of positive fecal examination results must be determined.