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  • Author or Editor: Carol L. Craig x
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Objective—To examine buffy coat smears for circulating mast cells in clinically normal cats and cats with illnesses unrelated to mast cell tumors and identify whether conditions other than mast cell tumors are associated with mastocytemia in cats.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—40 clinically normal cats and 40 cats with diseases unrelated to mast cell tumors (all cats were client owned).

Procedures—A blood sample for a CBC, serum biochemical analyses, and buffy coat evaluation was obtained from each cat. Ill cats underwent other testing on the basis of their disease process.

Results—No mast cells were detected in any sample. Eosinophilia was evident in 11 (27.5%) and 12 (30%) clinically normal and ill cats, respectively. Basophilia was identified in 4 (10%) and 8 (20%) clinically normal and ill cats, respectively. Eight of the 40 (20%) ill cats had neutrophilia.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Circulating mast cells were not identified in clinically normal cats or ill cats without mast cell tumor–related disease. Ill cats did have conditions that caused eosinophilia, basophilia, or neutrophilia. The absence of mast cells in buffy coats obtained from clinically normal and ill cats lends support to the current practice of buffy coat evaluation for tumor staging and follow-up examinations in cats with mast cell tumors. Further studies of buffy coat analysis in cats with different forms of mast cell tumors are indicated to specifically elucidate the test's prognostic value for those patients.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To determine whether a selected set of 20 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers derived from beef cattle populations can be used to verify sample tracking in a commercial slaughter facility that processes primarily market (ie, culled) dairy cows.

Design—Prospective, blinded validation study.

Animals—165 cows and 3 bulls from 18 states (82% Holstein, 8% other dairy breeds, and 10% beef breeds).

Procedure—Blood was collected by venipuncture from randomly chosen animals just prior to slaughter. The purported corresponding liver samples were collected during beef processing, and genotype profiles were obtained for each sample.

Results—On the basis of SNP allele frequencies in these cattle, the mean probability that 2 randomly selected individuals would possess identical genotypes at all 20 loci was 4.3 × 10-8. Thus, the chance of a coincidental genotype match between 2 animals was 1 in 23 million. Genotype profiles confirmed appropriate matching for 152 of the 168 (90.5%) purported bloodliver sample pairs and revealed mismatching for 16 (9.5%) pairs. For the 16 mismatched sample pairs, 33% to 76% of the 20 SNP genotypes did not match (mean, 52%). Discordance that could be attributed to genotyping error was estimated to be < 1% on the basis of results for split samples.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that this selected set of 20 bovine SNP markers is sufficiently informative to verify accuracy of sample tracking in slaughter plants that process beef or dairy cattle. These or similar SNP markers may facilitate high-throughput, DNA-based, traceback programs designed to detect drug residues in tissues, control of animal diseases, and enhance food safety. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005;226:1311–1314)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association