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OBJECTIVE To determine the pharmacokinetics of meloxicam in African grey parrots (Psittacus erithacus) during administration of multiple doses.

ANIMALS 6 healthy African grey parrots.

PROCEDURES Meloxicam was administered at each of 3 dosages (1 mg/kg, IM, q 24 h, for 7 days; 1 mg/kg, PO, q 24 h, for 12 days; and 1.6 mg/kg, PO, q 24 h, for 7 days) with an 8-week washout period between treatments. Blood samples were collected 12 and 24 hours after each drug administration (times of presumptive peak and trough drug concentrations) for pharmacokinetic analysis. Birds were visually assessed during all experiments and monitored for changes in selected plasma and urine biochemical variables after administration of the drug at 1.6 mg/kg.

RESULTS Mean trough plasma concentrations at steady state were 10.7 and 9.16 μg/mL after meloxicam administration at 1 mg/kg, IM, and 1 mg/kg, PO, respectively. Plasma drug accumulation was evident (accumulation ratios of 2.04 ± 0.30 [IM treatment] and 2.45 ± 0.26 [PO treatment]). Plasma and urine N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase activities were significantly increased at the end of meloxicam treatment at 1.6 mg/kg.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Plasma concentrations of meloxicam were maintained at values greater than effective analgesic concentrations described for other avian species. Although administration of meloxicam at a dosage of 1 mg/kg IM and PO daily for 1 week and 12 days, respectively, was not associated with adverse clinical effects in this population, further studies are needed to assess the efficacy and safety of the drug during prolonged treatment and the clinical relevance of its accumulation.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To document venous blood gas, acid-base, and plasma biochemical values for stranded juvenile loggerhead turtles at admission to a rehabilitation facility, compare these values among stranding causes, investigate differences in these values for turtles that survived versus those that died, and establish the baseline values for successfully rehabilitated loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta).

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—66 stranded juvenile loggerhead turtles that were hospitalized between 2008 and 2009.

Procedures—Venous blood gas, acid-base, and plasma biochemical values at the time of admission were compared retrospectively among turtles with different stranding causes. Initial results were compared between turtles that survived and turtles that died. Results for survivors were compared between the time of admission and time of release.

Results—57 (86.36%) turtles had various types of acid-base disorders at the time of admission to the rehabilitation facility. Of these, 33 (579%) had mixed acid-base disorders and 24 (42.1%) had primary acid-base disorders. All acid-base disorders were classified as mild to moderate, except 1 case of severe metabolic and respiratory acidosis. Except for the debilitated turtles (in which the mean initial glucose concentration was much lower than that observed for the rest of turtles), there was no difference in initial values when comparing stranding causes. Turtles that died during rehabilitation had significantly higher initial anion gap and osmolality, compared with turtles that survived.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Acid-base disorders were present in most stranded juvenile loggerhead turtles. Evaluation of accurately obtained, temperature-corrected venous blood gas, acid-base, and plasma biochemical values can provide important clinical and prognostic information and a valuable basis for the implementation of adequate and rapid treatment for stranded loggerhead turtles admitted to rehabilitation facilities.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To compare anatomic features of cross-sectional specimens with those of MRI images of the heads of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta).

Animals—5 cadavers of juvenile female loggerhead sea turtles.

Procedures—Spin-echo T1-weighted and T2-weighted MRI scans were obtained in sagittal, transverse, and dorsal planes with a 0.2-T magnet and head coil. Head specimens were grossly dissected and photographed. Anatomic features of the MRI images were compared with those of gross anatomic sections of the heads from 4 of these turtles.

Results—In the MRI images, anatomic details of the turtles' heads were identified by the characteristics of signal intensity of various tissues. Relevant anatomic structures were identified and labeled on the MRI images and corresponding anatomic sections.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The MRI images obtained through this study provided valid information on anatomic characteristics of the head in juvenile loggerhead sea turtles and should be useful for guiding clinical evaluation of this anatomic region in this species.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To characterize retroviruses isolated from boid snakes with inclusion body disease (IBD).

Animals—2 boa constrictors with IBD and 1 boa exposed to an affected snake.

Procedure—Snakes were euthanatized, and tissue specimens and blood samples were submitted for virus isolation. Tissue specimens were cultured with or without commercially available viper heart cells and examined by use of transmission electron microscopy (TEM) for evidence of viral replication. Reverse transcriptase activity was determined in sucrose gradient-purified virus. Western blotting was performed, using polyclonal antibodies against 1 of the isolated viruses. Specificity of the rabbit anti-virus antibody was evaluated, using an immunogold-labeling TEM technique.

Results—3 viruses (RV-1, RV-2, and RV-3) were isolated. The isolates were morphologically comparable to members of the Retroviridae family. Reverse transcriptase activity was high in sucrose gradient fractions that were rich in virus. Polyclonal antibody against RV-1 reacted with proteins of similar relative mobility in RV-1 and RV-2. By use of immunogold labeling, this antibody also recognized virions of both RV-1 and RV-2.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—A retrovirus was isolated from boid snakes with IBD or exposed to IBD. Western blot analysis of viral proteins indicated that viruses isolated from the different snakes were similar. Whether this virus represents the causative agent of IBD is yet to be determined. The isolation of retroviruses from boid snakes with IBD is an important step in the process of identifying the causative agent of this disease. (Am J Vet Res 2001;62:217–224)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research