Evaluation of plasma cortisol and corticosterone responses to synthetic adrenocorticotropic hormone administration in ferrets

Karen L. Rosenthal From the Department of Medicine, The Animal Medical Center, 510 E 62nd St, New York, NY 10021 (Rosenthal, Peterson, Quesenberry), and College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37916 (Lothrop).

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Mark E. Peterson From the Department of Medicine, The Animal Medical Center, 510 E 62nd St, New York, NY 10021 (Rosenthal, Peterson, Quesenberry), and College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37916 (Lothrop).

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Kathy E. Quesenberry From the Department of Medicine, The Animal Medical Center, 510 E 62nd St, New York, NY 10021 (Rosenthal, Peterson, Quesenberry), and College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37916 (Lothrop).

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Clinton D. Lothrop Jr. From the Department of Medicine, The Animal Medical Center, 510 E 62nd St, New York, NY 10021 (Rosenthal, Peterson, Quesenberry), and College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37916 (Lothrop).

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SUMMARY

Plasma cortisol and corticosterone responses of 8 clinically normal adult ferrets to synthetic acth (cosyntropin) were evaluated. Cosyntropin was administered iv at 4 dosages (0.5, 1.0, 5.0, and 10 μg/ kg of body weight) at 2- to 4-week intervals, with blood samples collected 60 and 120 minutes after injection. After completion of the studies, an additional acth stimulation test was performed by administering cosyntropin (1.0 μg/kg) im. The baseline plasma cortisol concentrations from all studies ranged from 25.9 to 235 nmol/L (mean ± sem = 73.8 ± 7.0 nmol/L), and plasma corticosterone values ranged from 1.7 to 47 nmol/L (mean ± sem = 8.3 ± 1.1 nmol/L). After iv administration of cosyntropin, plasma concentrations of cortisol and corticosterone increased significantly (P ≤ 0.05) and reached peak values at 60 minutes; however, there were no significant differences between plasma cortisol or corticosterone responses to the 4 dosages of cosyntropin. Intramuscular administration of 1.0 μg of cosyntropin/kg induced increases in plasma cortisol and corticosterone concentrations that were similar to the responses induced by iv administration of cosyntropin. The mean molar ratio of cortisol to corticosterone, calculated from the resting plasma concentrations, was approximately 9:1, whereas the acth-stimulated cortisol to corticosterone ratio was approximately 4:1. Results of this study indicated that administration of cosyntropin to clinically normal ferrets, at dosages ranging from 0.5 to 10 μg/kg, increased plasma concentrations of cortisol and corticosterone. Although cosyntropin stimulates the adrenocortical secretion of cortisol and corticosterone, cortisol appears to be the predominate circulating glucocorticoid in ferrets.

SUMMARY

Plasma cortisol and corticosterone responses of 8 clinically normal adult ferrets to synthetic acth (cosyntropin) were evaluated. Cosyntropin was administered iv at 4 dosages (0.5, 1.0, 5.0, and 10 μg/ kg of body weight) at 2- to 4-week intervals, with blood samples collected 60 and 120 minutes after injection. After completion of the studies, an additional acth stimulation test was performed by administering cosyntropin (1.0 μg/kg) im. The baseline plasma cortisol concentrations from all studies ranged from 25.9 to 235 nmol/L (mean ± sem = 73.8 ± 7.0 nmol/L), and plasma corticosterone values ranged from 1.7 to 47 nmol/L (mean ± sem = 8.3 ± 1.1 nmol/L). After iv administration of cosyntropin, plasma concentrations of cortisol and corticosterone increased significantly (P ≤ 0.05) and reached peak values at 60 minutes; however, there were no significant differences between plasma cortisol or corticosterone responses to the 4 dosages of cosyntropin. Intramuscular administration of 1.0 μg of cosyntropin/kg induced increases in plasma cortisol and corticosterone concentrations that were similar to the responses induced by iv administration of cosyntropin. The mean molar ratio of cortisol to corticosterone, calculated from the resting plasma concentrations, was approximately 9:1, whereas the acth-stimulated cortisol to corticosterone ratio was approximately 4:1. Results of this study indicated that administration of cosyntropin to clinically normal ferrets, at dosages ranging from 0.5 to 10 μg/kg, increased plasma concentrations of cortisol and corticosterone. Although cosyntropin stimulates the adrenocortical secretion of cortisol and corticosterone, cortisol appears to be the predominate circulating glucocorticoid in ferrets.

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