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  • Author or Editor: Michael E. Herrtage x
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Objective—To evaluate the role of adrenal and thyroid hormones in the prediction of death in a population of critically ill puppies with parvoviral diarrhea by measuring serial daily serum concentrations of cortisol and thyroxine.

Design—Prospective case-control study

Animals—57 critically ill puppies with parvoviral diarrhea admitted to the hospital and 17 clinically normal control puppies.

Procedures—Basal serum cortisol and thyroxine concentrations were measured for each dog with parvoviral diarrhea at admission (prior to treatment) and daily until death, euthanasia, or discharge.

Results—Median time between admission and death was 48 hours (ie, on day 3). Median serum cortisol concentration on day 1 (admission) in all dogs with parvoviral diarrhea (248 nmol/L) was significantly higher than in control dogs (77 nmol/L). No significant difference was found in the day 1 median serum cortisol concentration of 11 dogs that died (302 nmol/L) and 46 dogs that survived (238 nmol/L). A significantly higher median serum cortisol concentration was, however, found in nonsurvivor group dogs, compared with survivor group dogs, on days 2 and 3. Median serum thyroxine concentration on day 1 in dogs with parvoviral diarrhea was significantly lower than in control dogs (8.12 nmol/L vs 35 nmol/L, respectively). Median serum thyroxine concentration of nonsurvivor group dogs (4.4 nmol/L) was significantly lower than that of survivor group dogs (9.2 nmol/L) at admission and became even lower on days 2 and 3.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—High serum cortisol and low serum thyroxine concentrations at 24 and 48 hours after admission were associated with death in dogs with parvoviral diarrhea.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association



To develop a robust molecular genetic test for α-l-fucosidosis in English Springer Spaniels and to screen dogs from the United Kingdom and United States for the mutant allele.


35 English-bred English Springer Spaniels, 60 American-bred English Springer Spaniels, and 1 affected dog and its parents from a family of English Springer Spaniels in Colorado.


Polymerase chain reaction analysis was used to amplify the mutated region in the gene encoding α-l-fucosidase. High guanine-cytosine (GC) content of the region required use of an amplification buffer with high pH. Mutant and normal alleles were separated by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Molecular genetic test results were compared with enzyme data.


A 262-bp PCR product was amplified from normal dogs and compared with a 248-bp product from affected dogs. Carriers had 1 copy of each allele, distinguishable by the 14-bp size difference. Two carriers among the English-bred dogs were identified by use of enzyme and genomic DNA analyses. The molecular defect in dogs from Colorado was proven to be the same as that in British and Australian dogs. None of the other 60 American-bred dogs carried the mutant allele.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

A PCR method that can be used to identify dogs affected with or carriers of the autosomal recessive disease fucosidosis was established. Amplification was achieved within a GC-rich region, using a method that may be useful in overcoming amplification problems in GC-rich areas within other genes. Using this test, fucosidosis can be controlled and ultimately eradicated from the English Springer Spaniel population. (Am J Vet Res 1999;60:726-729)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research