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  • Author or Editor: Michele Borgarelli x
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Abstract

Objective—To compare echocardiographic variables of dogs with postmortem anatomic measurements and histologic characteristics of the mitral valve (MV).

Animals—21 cardiologically normal dogs.

Procedures—The MV was measured echocardiographically by use of the right parasternal 5-chamber long-axis view. Dogs were euthanized, and anatomic measurements of the MV annulus (MVa) were performed at the level of the left circumflex coronary artery. Mitral valve leaflets (MVLs) and chordae tendineae were measured. Structure of the MVLs was histologically evaluated in 3 segments (proximal, middle, and distal).

Results—Echocardiographic measurements of MVL length did not differ significantly from anatomic measurements. A positive correlation was detected between body weight and MVa area. There was a negative correlation between MVa area and the percentage by which the MVL area exceeded the MVa area. Anterior MVLs had a significantly higher number of chordae tendineae than did posterior MVLs. Histologically, layering of MVLs was less preserved in the distal segment, whereas the muscular component and adipose tissue were significantly more diffuse in the proximal and middle segments.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The MV in cardiologically normal dogs had wide anatomic variability. Anatomic measurements of MVL length were correlated with echocardiographic measurements.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To investigate whether plasma activity of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 and -9 was associated with severity of myxomatous mitral valve disease (MMVD) in dogs and to assess potential associations between MMP activity and dog characteristics, echocardiographic variables, systolic arterial blood pressure (SAP), heart rate, cardiac troponin I (cTnI) concentration, and C-reactive protein concentration.

Animals—75 client-owned dogs.

Procedures—Severity of MMVD was assessed by use of echocardiography. Plasma activity of latent (pro-MMP) and active MMP-2 and -9 was analyzed via zymography. Plasma concentration of cTnI was analyzed with a high-sensitivity cTnI assay, and C-reactive protein concentration was analyzed with a canine-specific ELISA.

Results—Pro-MMP-9, active MMP-9, and pro-MMP-2 were detected, but active MMP-2 was not. No significant differences were found in MMP concentrations among the 4 MMVD severity groups. Activity of pro-MMP-9 decreased with decreases in SAP and was higher in male dogs than in female dogs. Activity of MMP-9 decreased with increases in left ventricular end-systolic dimension and with decreases in SAP and cTnI concentration. Left ventricular end-systolic dimension was the variable most strongly associated with MMP-9 activity. No associations were found between the activity of pro-MMP-2 and investigated variables.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Plasma MMP-9 activity decreased with increases in the end-systolic left ventricular internal dimension and decreases in SAP. Hence, evaluation of MMP-9 activity has the potential to provide unique information about the myocardial remodeling process in dogs with MMVD.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To investigate use of signal analysis of heart sounds and murmurs in assessing severity of mitral valve regurgitation (mitral regurgitation [MR]) in dogs with myxomatous mitral valve disease (MMVD).

Animals—77 client-owned dogs.

Procedures—Cardiac sounds were recorded from dogs evaluated by use of auscultatory and echocardiographic classification systems. Signal analysis techniques were developed to extract 7 sound variables (first frequency peak, murmur energy ratio, murmur duration > 200 Hz, sample entropy and first minimum of the auto mutual information function of the murmurs, and energy ratios of the first heart sound [S1] and second heart sound [S2]).

Results—Significant associations were detected between severity of MR and all sound variables, except the energy ratio of S1. An increase in severity of MR resulted in greater contribution of higher frequencies, increased signal irregularity, and decreased energy ratio of S2. The optimal combination of variables for distinguishing dogs with high-intensity murmurs from other dogs was energy ratio of S2 and murmur duration > 200 Hz (sensitivity, 79%; specificity, 71%) by use of the auscultatory classification. By use of the echocardiographic classification, corresponding variables were auto mutual information, first frequency peak, and energy ratio of S2 (sensitivity, 88%; specificity, 82%).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Most of the investigated sound variables were significantly associated with severity of MR, which indicated a powerful diagnostic potential for monitoring MMVD. Signal analysis techniques could be valuable for clinicians when performing risk assessment or determining whether special care and more extensive examinations are required.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To histologically identify glomerular lesions in dogs infected with Leishmania organisms.

Animals—41 dogs (17 sexually intact males and 14 sexually intact and 10 ovariohysterectomized females) that had positive results when tested for leishmaniosis as determined by use of serologic evaluation (indirect fluorescent antibody test, titers of 1:80 to 1:640) and direct microscopic identification of the protozoal organisms.

Procedure—Urine samples were collected by use of cystocentesis and examined by qualitative SDSagarose gel electrophoresis (AGE). All dogs had nonselective (glomerular) or mixed (glomerular and tubular) proteinemia. Specimens were obtained from each dog during ultrasound-assisted renal biopsy and used for histologic examination. Each specimen was stained with H&E, periodic acid–Schiff, Goldner's trichrome, methenamine silver, and Congo Red stains. Specimens were adequate for evaluation when they contained at least 5 glomeruli/section, except for specimens stained with Congo Red in which 1 glomerulus/section was adequate.

Results—Examination of renal biopsy specimens revealed various glomerular lesions in all dogs and interstitial or tubular (or both) lesions in 23 of 41 (55%) dogs.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Glomerular lesions that develop in dogs during infection with Leishmania organisms can be classified histologically as mesangial glomerulonephritis, membranous glomerulonephritis, membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis, and focal segmental glomerulonephritis. Tubulointerstitial histopathologic conditions were not observed as the primary lesion, despite being evident in 23 of 41 (55%) dogs. Use of SDS-AGE for qualitative evaluation of proteinuria and successive collection of specimens during renal biopsies following diagnosis of nonselective glomerular proteinuria provides the possibility for early identification of renal lesions. (Am J Vet Res 2003;64:558–561)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate reproducibility of ejection fraction (EF), myocardial perfusion (MP), and pulmonary transit time (PTT) measured in a group of dogs by use of contrast echocardiography and to examine safety of this method by evaluating cardiac troponin I concentrations.

Animals—6 healthy dogs.

Procedures—2 bolus injections and a constant rate infusion of contrast agent were administered IV. Echocardiographic EF was determined by use of the area-length method and was calculated without and with contrast agent. The PTT and normalized PTT (PTT/mean R-R interval) were measured for each bolus. Constant rate infusion was used for global MP evaluation, and regional MP was calculated by use of a real-time method in 4 regions of interest of the left ventricle. Cardiac troponin I concentration was analyzed before and after contrast agent administration. Intraoberserver and interobserver variability was calculated.

Results—EF was easier to determine with the ultrasonographic contrast agent. For the first and second bolus, mean ± SD PTT was 1.8 ± 0.2 seconds and 2.1 ± 0.3 seconds and normalized PTT was 3.4 ± 0.3 seconds and 3.5 ± 0.3 seconds, respectively. A coefficient of variation < 15% was obtained for global MP but not for the regional MPs. No differences were detected between precontrast and postcontrast cardiac troponin I concentrations.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Contrast echocardiography appeared to be a repeat-able and safe technique for use in the evaluation of global MP and PTT in healthy dogs, and it improved delineation of the endocardial border in dogs.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research