AIM: To determine the spectrum of pineal microstructures (solid/cystic parts) in a large clinical population using a high-resolution 3D-T2-weighted sequence.
METHODS: A total of 347 patients enrolled for cranial magnetic resonance imaging were randomly included in this study. Written informed consent was obtained from all patients. The exclusion criteria were artifacts or mass lesions prohibiting evaluation of the pineal gland in any of the sequences. True-FISP-3D-imaging (1.5-T, isotropic voxel 0.9 mm) was performed in 347 adults (55.4 ± 18.1 years). Pineal gland volume (PGV), cystic volume, and parenchyma volume (cysts excluded) were measured manually.
RESULTS: Overall, 40.3% of pineal glands were cystic. The median PGV was 54.6 mm3 (78.33 ± 89.0 mm3), the median cystic volume was 5.4 mm3 (15.8 ± 37.2 mm3), and the median parenchyma volume was 53.6 mm3 (71.9 ± 66.7 mm3). In cystic glands, the standard deviation of the PGV was substantially higher than in solid glands (98% vs 58% of the mean). PGV declined with age (r = -0.130, P = 0.016).
CONCLUSION: The high interindividual volume variation is mainly related to cysts. Pineal parenchyma volume decreased slightly with age, whereas gender-related effects appear to be negligible.
Pineal gland volume; Pineal cyst; Magnetic resonance imaging; Etiology; Reference range
The discovery of the post-transcriptional gene silencing (PTGS) by small non-protein-coding RNAs is considered as a major breakthrough in biology. In the last decade we just started to realize the biologic function and complexity of gene regulation by small non-coding RNAs. PTGS is a conserved phenomenon which was observed in various species such as fungi, worms, plants, and mammals. Micro RNAs (miRNA) and small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) are two gene silencing mediators constituting an evolutionary conserved class of non-coding RNAs regulating many biological processes in eukaryotes. As this small RNAs appear to regulate gene expression at translational and transcriptional level it is not surprising that during the last decade many human diseases among them Alzheimer's disease, cardiovascular diseases, and various cancer types were associated with deregulated miRNA expression. Consequently small RNAs are considered to hold big promises as therapeutic agents. However, despite of the enormous therapeutic potential many questions remain unanswered. A major critical point, when evaluating novel therapeutic approaches, is the transfer of in vitro settings to an in vivo model. Classical animal models rely on the laboratory kept animals under artificial conditions and often missing an intact immune system. Model organisms with spontaneously occurring tumors as e.g., dogs provide the possibility to evaluate therapeutic agents under the surveillance of an in intact immune system and thereby providing an authentic tumor reacting scenario. Considering the genomic similarity between canines and humans and the advantages of the dog as cancer model system for human neoplasias the analyses of the complex role of small RNAs in canine tumor development could be of major value for both species. Herein we discuss comparatively the role of miRNAs in human and canine cancer development and highlight the potential and advantages of the model organism dog for tumor research.
RNAi; PTGS; model organism; cancer research; dog; miRNA; siRNA
Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging is the preferred diagnostic tool to evaluate internal disorders of many joints in humans; however, the usefulness of MR imaging in the context of osteoarthritis, and joint disease in general, has yet to be characterized in veterinary medicine. The objective of this study was to assess the diagnostic accuracy of short-duration 3 Tesla MR imaging for the evaluation of cranial and caudal cruciate ligament, meniscal and cartilage damage, as well as the degree of osteoarthritis, in dogs affected by non-traumatic, naturally-occurring cranial cruciate ligament rupture (CCLR). Diagnoses made from MR images were compared to those made during surgical exploration. Twenty-one client-owned dogs were included in this study, and one experienced evaluator assessed all images.
All cranial cruciate ligaments were correctly identified as ruptured. With one exception, all caudal cruciate ligaments were correctly identified as intact. High sensitivities and specificities were obtained when diagnosing meniscal rupture. MR images revealed additional subclinical lesions in both the cranial and caudal cruciate ligaments and in the menisci. There was a “clear” statistical (kappa) agreement between the MR and the surgical findings for both cartilage damage and degree of osteoarthritis. However, the large 95% confidence intervals indicated that evaluation of cartilage damage and of degree of osteoarthritis is not clinically satisfactory.
The presence of cruciate ligament damage and meniscal tears could be accurately assessed using the MR images obtained with our protocol. However, in the case of meniscal evaluation, occasional misdiagnosis did occur. The presence of cartilage damage and the degree of osteoarthritis could not be properly evaluated.
Dog; Stifle; Cranial cruciate ligament; High-field MRI; Radiography
Animals alter their locomotor mechanics to adapt to a loss of limb function. To better understand their compensatory mechanisms, this study evaluated the changes in the fore-aft ground forces to forelimb lameness and tested the hypothesis that dogs unload the affected limb by producing a nose-up pitching moment via the exertion of a net-propulsive force when the lame limb is on the ground. Seven healthy Beagles walked and trotted at steady speed on an instrumented treadmill while horizontal force data were collected before and after a moderate lameness was induced. Peak, mean and summed braking and propulsive forces as well as the duration each force was exerted and the time to reach maximum force were evaluated for both the sound and the lame condition. Compared with the sound condition, a net-propulsive force was produced by the lame diagonal limbs due to a reduced braking force in the affected forelimb and an increased propulsive force in the contralateral hindlimb when the dogs walked and trotted. To regain pitch stability and ensure steady speed for a given locomotor cycle, the dogs produced a net-braking force when the sound diagonal limbs were on the ground by exerting greater braking forces in both limbs during walking and additionally reducing the propulsive force in the hindlimb during trotting. Consistent with the proposed mechanism, dogs maximize their double support phases when walking. Likely associated with the fore-aft force adaptations to lameness are changes in muscle recruitment that potentially result in short- and long-term effects on the limb and trunk muscles.
Virotherapy using oncolytic vaccinia virus (VACV) strains is one promising new strategy for cancer therapy. We have previously reported that oncolytic vaccinia virus strains expressing an anti-VEGF (Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor) single-chain antibody (scAb) GLAF-1 exhibited significant therapeutic efficacy for treatment of human tumor xenografts. Here, we describe the use of oncolytic vaccinia virus GLV-1h109 encoding GLAF-1 for canine cancer therapy. In this study we analyzed the virus-mediated delivery and production of scAb GLAF-1 and the oncolytic and immunological effects of the GLV-1h109 vaccinia virus strain against canine soft tissue sarcoma and canine prostate carcinoma in xenograft models. Cell culture data demonstrated that the GLV-1h109 virus efficiently infect, replicate in and destroy both tested canine cancer cell lines. In addition, successful expression of GLAF-1 was demonstrated in virus-infected canine cancer cells and the antibody specifically recognized canine VEGF. In two different xenograft models, the systemic administration of the GLV-1h109 virus was found to be safe and led to anti-tumor and immunological effects resulting in the significant reduction of tumor growth in comparison to untreated control mice. Furthermore, tumor-specific virus infection led to a continued production of functional scAb GLAF-1, resulting in inhibition of angiogenesis. Overall, the GLV-1h109-mediated cancer therapy and production of immunotherapeutic anti-VEGF scAb may open the way for combination therapy concept i.e. vaccinia virus mediated oncolysis and intratumoral production of therapeutic drugs in canine cancer patients.
Cell lines represent a key tool in cancer research allowing the generation of neoplasias which resemble initial tumours in in-vivo animal models. The characterisation of early tumour development is of major interest in order to evaluate the efficacy of therapeutic agents. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) based in-vivo characterisation allows visualisation and characterisation of tumour development in early stages prior to manual palpation. Contrast agents for MRI such as superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIOs) and manganese chloride (MnCl2) represent powerful tools for the in-vivo characterisation of early stage tumours. In this experimental study, we labelled prostate cancer cells with MnCl2 or SPIOs in vitro and used 1 T MRI for tracing labelled cells in-vitro and 7 T MRI for tracking in an in-vivo animal model.
Labelling of prostate cancer cells CT1258 was established in-vitro with MnCl2 and SPIOs. In-vitro detection of labelled cells in an agar phantom was carried out through 1 T MRI while in-vivo detection was performed using 7 T MRI after subcutaneous (s.c.) injection of labelled cells into NOD-Scid mice (n = 20). The animals were scanned in regular intervals until euthanization. The respective tumour volumes were analysed and corresponding tumour masses were subjected to histologic examination.
MnCl2in-vitro labelling resulted in no significant metabolic effects on proliferation and cell vitality. In-vitro detection-limit accounted 105 cells for MnCl2 as well as for SPIOs labelling. In-vivo 7 T MRI scans allowed detection of 103 and 104 cells. In-vivo MnCl2 labelled cells were detectable from days 4–16 while SPIO labelling allowed detection until 4 days after s.c. injection. MnCl2 labelled cells were highly tumourigenic in NOD-Scid mice and the tumour volume development was characterised in a time dependent manner. The amount of injected cells correlated with tumour size development and disease progression. Histological analysis of the induced tumour masses demonstrated characteristic morphologies of prostate adenocarcinoma.
To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study reporting direct in-vitro MnCl2 labelling and 7 T based in-vivo MRI tracing of cancer cells in a model of prostate cancer. MnCl2 labelling was found to be suitable for in-vivo tracing allowing long detection periods. The labelled cells kept their highly tumourigenic potential in-vivo. Tumour volume development was visualised prior to manual palpation allowing tumour characterisation in early stages of the disease.
Cell lines are key tools in cancer research allowing the generation of neoplasias in animal models resembling the initial tumours able to mimic the original neoplasias closely in vivo. Canine lymphoma is the major hematopoietic malignancy in dogs and considered as a valuable spontaneous large animal model for human Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (NHL). Herein we describe the establishment and characterisation of an in vivo model using the canine B-cell lymphoma cell line CLBL-1 analysing the stability of the induced tumours and the ability to resemble the original material. CLBL-1 was injected into Rag2−/−γc−/− mice. The generated tumor material was analysed by immunophenotyping and histopathology and used to establish the cell line CLBL-1M. Both cell lines were karyotyped for detection of chromosomal aberrations. Additionally, CLBL-1 was stimulated with IL-2 and DSP30 as described for primary canine B-cell lymphomas and NHL to examine the stimulatory effect on cell proliferation. CLBL-1 in vivo application resulted in lymphoma-like disease and tumor formation. Immunophenotypic analysis of tumorous material showed expression of CD45+, MHCII+, CD11a+ and CD79αcy+. PARR analysis showed positivity for IgH indicating a monoclonal character. These cytogenetic, molecular, immunophenotypical and histological characterisations of the in vivo model reveal that the induced tumours and thereof generated cell line resemble closely the original material. After DSP30 and IL-2 stimulation, CLBL-1 showed to respond in the same way as primary material. The herein described CLBL-1 in vivo model provides a highly stable tool for B-cell lymphoma research in veterinary and human medicine allowing various further in vivo studies.
Oncolytic viruses refer to those that are able to eliminate malignancies by direct targeting and lysis of cancer cells, leaving non-cancerous tissues unharmed. Several oncolytic viruses including adenovirus strains, canine distemper virus and vaccinia virus strains have been used for canine cancer therapy in preclinical studies. However, in contrast to human studies, clinical trials with oncolytic viruses for canine cancer patients have not been reported. An 'ideal' virus has yet to be identified. This review is focused on the prospective use of oncolytic viruses in the treatment of canine tumors - a knowledge that will undoubtedly contribute to the development of oncolytic viral agents for canine cancer therapy in the future.
cancer; canine cancer therapy; oncolytic virus; oncolysis; target molecule, combination therapy
Intestinal immune regulation including development of oral tolerance is of great importance for the maintenance of intestinal homeostasis. Concerning this, regulatory T cells (Tregs) occupy a pivotal role in cell-mediated immunosuppression. Dysregulation of mucosal immunology leading to an abnormal interaction with commensal bacteria is suggested to play a key role in the pathogenesis of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) in men and dogs. The aim of this study was to characterise the expression of Foxp3 in the normal canine gut of 18 dogs (mean age: 6.03 years), in 16 dogs suffering from IBD (mean age: 5.05 years), and of 6 dogs with intestinal nematode infection (mean age: 0.87 years) using immunohistochemistry. In the duodenum, Tregs in healthy dogs declined from villi (median: 10.67/62 500 μm2) to crypts (median: 1.89/62 500 μm2). Tregs were further increased in the villi of middle-aged dogs (median: 18.92/62 500 μm2) in contrast to juvenile (median: 3.50/62 500 μm2) and old (median: 9.56/62 500 μm2) individuals. Compared to healthy controls, animals suffering from IBD revealed reduced numbers of Tregs in duodenal villi (median: 4.13/62 500 μm2). Dogs with intestinal nematode infection displayed increased numbers of Tregs (median: 21.06/62 500 μm2) compared to healthy animals.
Age-related changes indicate a progressive establishment of oral tolerance and immunosenescence in the canine elderly. The results further suggest that a defect in Treg homeostasis may be involved in the pathogenesis of canine IBD. In contrast, increased numbers of Tregs in the duodenum may be due to nematode infection.
The auditory midbrain implant (AMI), which consists of a single shank array designed for stimulation within the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICC), has been developed for deaf patients who cannot benefit from a cochlear implant. Currently, performance levels in clinical trials for the AMI are far from those achieved by the cochlear implant and vary dramatically across patients, in part due to stimulation location effects. As an initial step towards improving the AMI, we investigated how stimulation of different regions along the isofrequency domain of the ICC as well as varying pulse phase durations and levels affected auditory cortical activity in anesthetized guinea pigs. This study was motivated by the need to determine in which region to implant the single shank array within a three-dimensional ICC structure and what stimulus parameters to use in patients. Our findings indicate that complex and unfavorable cortical activation properties are elicited by stimulation of caudal–dorsal ICC regions with the AMI array. Our results also confirm the existence of different functional regions along the isofrequency domain of the ICC (i.e., a caudal–dorsal and a rostral–ventral region), which has been traditionally unclassified. Based on our study as well as previous animal and human AMI findings, we may need to deliver more complex stimuli than currently used in the AMI patients to effectively activate the caudal ICC or ensure that the single shank AMI is only implanted into a rostral–ventral ICC region in future patients.
auditory midbrain implant; auditory brainstem implant; cochlear implant; deep brain stimulation; auditory cortex; auditory thalamus
Reproducibly high transfection rates with low methodology-induced cytotoxic side effects are essential to attain the required effect on targeted cells when exogenous DNA is transfected. Different approaches and modifications such as the use of nanoparticles (NPs) are being evaluated to increase transfection efficiencies. Several studies have focused on the attained transfection efficiency after NP-mediated approaches. However, data comparing toxicity of these novel approaches with conventional methods is still rare.
Transfection efficiency and methodology-induced cytotoxicity were analysed after transfection with different NP-mediated and conventional approaches. Two eukaryotic DNA-expression-plasmids were used to transfect the mammalian cell line MTH53A applying six different transfection protocols: conventional transfection reagent (FuGENE HD, FHD), FHD in combination with two different sizes of stabilizer-free laser-generated AuNPs (PLAL-AuNPs_S1,_S2), FHD and commercially available AuNPs (Plano-AuNP), and two magnetic transfection protocols. 24 h post transfection efficiency of each protocol was analysed using fluorescence microscopy and GFP-based flow cytometry. Toxicity was assessed measuring cell proliferation and percentage of propidium iodide (PI%) positive cells. Expression of the respective recombinant proteins was evaluated by immunofluorescence.
The addition of AuNPs to the transfection protocols significantly increased transfection efficiency in the pIRES-hrGFPII-eIL-12 transfections (FHD: 16%; AuNPs mean: 28%), whereas the magnet-assisted protocols did not increase efficiency. Ligand-free PLAL-AuNPs had no significant cytotoxic effect, while the ligand-stabilized Plano-AuNPs induced a significant increase in the PI% and lower cell proliferation. For pIRES-hrGFPII-rHMGB1 transfections significantly higher transfection efficiency was observed with PLAL-AuNPs (FHD: 31%; PLAL-AuNPs_S1: 46%; PLAL-AuNPs_S2: 50%), while the magnet-assisted transfection led to significantly lower efficiencies than the FHD protocol. With PLAL-AuNPs_S1 and _S2 the PI% was significantly higher, yet no consistent effect of these NPs on cell proliferation was observed. The magnet-assisted protocols were least effective, but did result in the lowest cytotoxic effect.
This study demonstrated that transfection efficiency of DNA-expression-plasmids was significantly improved by the addition of AuNPs. In some combinations the respective cytotoxicity was increased depending on the type of the applied AuNPs and the transfected DNA construct. Consequently, our results indicate that for routine use of these AuNPs the specific nanoparticle formulation and DNA construct combination has to be considered.
Diagnosis of extracardiac intrathoracic vascular anomalies is of clinical importance, but remains challenging. Traditional imaging modalities, such as radiography, echocardiography, and angiography, are inherently limited by the difficulties of a 2-dimensional approach to a 3-dimensional object. We postulated that accurate characterization of malformations of the aorta would benefit from 3-dimensional assessment. Therefore, multidetector-row computed tomography (MDCT) was chosen as a 3-dimensional, new, and noninvasive imaging technique. The purpose of this study was to evaluate patients with 2 common diseases of the intrathoracic aorta, either patent ductus arteriosus or vascular ring anomaly, by contrast-enhanced 64-row computed tomography.
Electrocardiography (ECG)-gated and thoracic nongated MDCT images were reviewed in identified cases of either a patent ductus arteriosus or vascular ring anomaly. Ductal size and morphology were determined in 6 dogs that underwent ECG-gated MDCT. Vascular ring anomalies were characterized in 7 dogs and 3 cats by ECG-gated MDCT or by a nongated thoracic standard protocol.
Cardiac ECG-gated MDCT clearly displayed the morphology, length, and caliber of the patent ductus arteriosus in 6 affected dogs. Persistent right aortic arch was identified in 10 animals, 8 of which showed a coexisting aberrant left subclavian artery. A mild dilation of the proximal portion of the aberrant subclavian artery near its origin of the aorta was present in 4 dogs, and a diverticulum analogous to the human Kommerell's diverticulum was present in 2 cats.
Contrast-enhanced MDCT imaging of thoracic anomalies gives valuable information about the exact aortic arch configuration. Furthermore, MDCT was able to characterize the vascular branching patterns in dogs and cats with a persistent right aortic arch and the morphology and size of the patent ductus arteriosus in affected dogs. This additional information can be of help with regard to improved diagnoses of thoracic anomalies and the planning of surgical interventions.
Canine mammary carcinoma is a highly metastatic tumor that is poorly responsive to available treatment. Therefore, there is an urgent need to identify novel agents for therapy of this disease. Recently, we reported that the oncolytic vaccinia virus GLV-1h68 could be a useful tool for therapy of canine mammary adenoma in vivo. In this study we analyzed the therapeutic effect of GLV-1h68 against canine mammary carcinoma. Cell culture data demonstrated that GLV-1h68 efficiently infected and destroyed cells of the mammary carcinoma cell line MTH52c. Furthermore, after systemic administration, this attenuated vaccinia virus strain primarily replicated in canine tumor xenografts in nude mice. Finally, infection with GLV-1h68 led to strong inflammatory and oncolytic effects resulting in significant growth inhibition of the tumors. In summary, the data showed that the GLV-1h68 virus strain has promising potential for effective treatment of canine mammary carcinoma.
optic nerve sheath; meningocele; ectasia; intracranial pressure
Among other causes the long-term result of hip prostheses in dogs is determined by aseptic loosening. A prevention of prosthesis complications can be achieved by an optimization of the tribological system which finally results in improved implant duration. In this context a computerized model for the calculation of hip joint loadings during different motions would be of benefit. In a first step in the development of such an inverse dynamic multi-body simulation (MBS-) model we here present the setup of a canine hind limb model applicable for the calculation of ground reaction forces.
The anatomical geometries of the MBS-model have been established using computer tomography- (CT-) and magnetic resonance imaging- (MRI-) data. The CT-data were collected from the pelvis, femora, tibiae and pads of a mixed-breed adult dog. Geometric information about 22 muscles of the pelvic extremity of 4 mixed-breed adult dogs was determined using MRI. Kinematic and kinetic data obtained by motion analysis of a clinically healthy dog during a gait cycle (1 m/s) on an instrumented treadmill were used to drive the model in the multi-body simulation.
Results and Discussion
As a result the vertical ground reaction forces (z-direction) calculated by the MBS-system show a maximum deviation of 1.75%BW for the left and 4.65%BW for the right hind limb from the treadmill measurements. The calculated peak ground reaction forces in z- and y-direction were found to be comparable to the treadmill measurements, whereas the curve characteristics of the forces in y-direction were not in complete alignment.
In conclusion, it could be demonstrated that the developed MBS-model is suitable for simulating ground reaction forces of dogs during walking. In forthcoming investigations the model will be developed further for the calculation of forces and moments acting on the hip joint during different movements, which can be of help in context with the in silico development and testing of hip prostheses.
Ultrashort pulsed laser ablation in liquids represents a powerful tool for the generation of pure gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) avoiding chemical precursors and thereby making them especially interesting for biomedical applications. However, because of their electron accepting properties, laser-generated AuNPs might affect biochemical properties of biomolecules, which often adsorb onto the nanoparticles. We investigated possible effects of such laser-generated AuNPs on biological functionality of DNA molecules. We tested four differently sized and positively charged AuNPs by incubating them with recombinant eGFP-C1-HMGB1 DNA expression plasmids that code for eGFP fusion proteins and contain the canine architectural transcription factor HMGB1. We were able to show that successfully transfected mammalian cells are still able to synthesize and process the fusion proteins. Our observations revealed that incubation of AuNP with the plasmid DNA encoding the recombinant canine HMGB1 neither prevented the mediated uptake of the vector through the plasma membrane in presence of a transfection reagent nor had any effect on the transport of the synthesized fusion proteins to the nuclei. Biological activity of the recombinant GFP-HMGB1 fusion protein appears to have not been affected either, as a strong characteristic protein accumulation in the nucleus could be observed. We also discovered that transfection efficiencies depend on the size of AuNP. In conclusion, our data indicate that laser-generated AuNPs present a good alternative to chemically synthesized nanoparticles for use in biomedical applications.
There are several numerical investigations on bone remodelling after total hip arthroplasty (THA) on the basis of the finite element analysis (FEA). For such computations certain boundary conditions have to be defined. The authors chose a maximum of three static load situations, usually taken from the gait cycle because this is the most frequent dynamic activity of a patient after THA.
Materials and methods
The numerical study presented here investigates whether it is useful to consider only one static load situation of the gait cycle in the FE calculation of the bone remodelling. For this purpose, 5 different loading cases were examined in order to determine their influence on the change in the physiological load distribution within the femur and on the resulting strain-adaptive bone remodelling. First, four different static loading cases at 25%, 45%, 65% and 85% of the gait cycle, respectively, and then the whole gait cycle in a loading regime were examined in order to regard all the different loadings of the cycle in the simulation.
The computed evolution of the apparent bone density (ABD) and the calculated mass losses in the periprosthetic femur show that the simulation results are highly dependent on the chosen boundary conditions.
These numerical investigations prove that a static load situation is insufficient for representing the whole gait cycle. This causes severe deviations in the FE calculation of the bone remodelling. However, accompanying clinical examinations are necessary to calibrate the bone adaptation law and thus to validate the FE calculations.
Prostate cancer is a frequent finding in man. In dogs, malignant disease of the prostate is also of clinical relevance, although it is a less common diagnosis. Even though there are numerous differences in origin and development of the disease, man and dog share many similarities in the pathological presentation. For this reason, the dog might be a useful animal model for prostate malignancies in man.
Although prostate cancer is of great importance in veterinary medicine as well as in comparative medicine, there are only few cell lines available. Thus, it was the aim of the present study to determine whether the formerly established prostate carcinoma cell line CT1258 is a suitable tool for in vivo testing, and to distinguish the growth pattern of the induced tumours.
For characterisation of the in vivo behaviour of the in vitro established canine prostate carcinoma cell line CT1258, cells were inoculated in 19 NOD.CB17-PrkdcScid/J (in the following: NOD-Scid) mice, either subcutaneously or intraperitoneally. After sacrifice, the obtained specimens were examined histologically and compared to the pattern of the original tumour in the donor.
Cytogenetic investigation was performed.
The cell line CT 1258 not only showed to be highly tumourigenic after subcutaneous as well as intraperitoneal inoculation, but also mimicked the behaviour of the original tumour.
Tumours induced by inoculation of the cell line CT1258 resemble the situation in naturally occurring prostate carcinoma in the dog, and thus could be used as in vivo model for future studies.
The high mobility group A1 proteins (HMGA1a/HMGA1b) are highly conserved between mammalian species and widely described as participating in various cellular processes. By inducing DNA conformation changes the HMGA1 proteins indirectly influence the binding of various transcription factors and therefore effect the transcription regulation. In humans chromosomal aberrations affecting the HMGA1 gene locus on HSA 6p21 were described to be the cause for various benign mesenchymal tumours while high titres of HMGA1 proteins were shown to be associated with the neoplastic potential of various types of cancer. Interestingly, the absence of HMGA1 proteins was shown to cause insulin resistance and diabetes in humans and mice.
Due to the various similarities in biology and presentation of human and canine cancers the dog has joined the common rodent animal model for therapeutic and preclinical studies. Accordingly, the canine genome was sequenced completely twice but unfortunately this could not solve the structure of canine HMGA1 gene.
Herein we report the characterisation of the genomic structure of the canine HMGA1 gene consisting of 7 exons and 6 introns spanning in total 9524 bp, the in vivo localisation of the HMGA1 protein to the nucleus, and a chromosomal assignment of the gene by FISH to CFA12q11. Additionally, we evaluated a described canine HMGA1 exon 6 SNP in 55 Dachshunds.
The performed characterisations will make comparative analyses of aberrations affecting the human and canine gene and proteins possible, thereby providing a basis for revealing mechanisms involved in HMGA1 related pathogenesis in both species.
Thrombocytosis, which is defined as a platelet count greater than 400 platelets/nl, has been found to be an independent predictor of shorter survival in various tumors. Release of growth factors from tumors has been proposed to increase platelet counts. Preoperative platelet counts and other clinical and hematological parameters were reviewed from the records of 153 patients diagnosed between 1999 and 2004 with histologically confirmed glioblastoma in order to evaluate the prognostic significance of preoperative thrombocytosis in these patients. The relationship between thrombocytosis and survival was initially analyzed in all patients regardless of further therapy. Univariate log-rank tests showed that the median survival time of 29 patients with preoperative thrombocytosis (19%) was significantly shorter (4 months; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], 3–6 months) compared to 124 patients with normal platelet counts (11 months; 95% CI, 8–13 months; p = 0.0006). Multivariate analysis (Cox proportional hazards model) confirmed preoperative platelet count, age, prothrombin time, and activated partial thromboplastin time to be prognostic factors of survival (all p < 0.05). In a subset of patients (only operated patients with radiation therapy with or without additional chemotherapy), survival was likewise significantly shorter when preoperative thrombocytosis was diagnosed (6 months; 95% CI, 4–12 months) compared to patients with normal platelet count (13 months; 95% CI, 11–15 months; p = 0.0359). In multivariate analysis, age, platelet count, preoperative prothrombin time, and degree of tumor resection retained significance as prognostic factors of survival (all p < 0.05). The results of our study demonstrate preoperative thrombocytosis to be a prognostic factor associated with shorter survival time in patients with glioblastoma.
angiogenesis; malignant glioma; platelets; prognostic parameter
Chromosomal translocations affecting the chromosome 2p21 cluster in a 450 kb breakpoint region are frequently observed in human benign thyroid adenomas. THADA (thyroid adenoma associated) was identified as the affected gene within this breakpoint region. In contrast to man tumours of the thyroid gland of dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) constitute mainly as follicular cell carcinomas, with malignant thyroid tumours being more frequent than benign thyroid adenomas. In order to elucidate if the THADA gene is also a target of chromosomal rearrangements in thyroid adenomas of the dog we have physically mapped the canine THADA gene to canine chromosome 10.
A PCR was established to screen a canine genome library for a BAC clone containing the gene sequence of canine THADA. Further PCR reactions were done using the identified BAC clone as a template in order to verify the corresponding PCR product by sequencing.
Canine whole blood was incubated with colcemid in order to arrest the cultured cells in metaphases. The verified BAC DNA was digoxigenin labeled and used as a probe in fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Ten well spread metaphases were examined indicating a signal on canine chromosome 10 on both chromatids. A detailed fine mapping was performed indicating the canine THADA gene locus on the q-arm of chromosome 10.
The canine THADA gene locus was mapped on chromosome 10q25. Our mapping results obtained in this study following the previously described nomenclature for the canine karyotype.
We analysed whether the THADA gene locus is a hotspot of canine chromosomal rearrangements in canine neoplastic lesions of the thyroid and in addition might play a role as a candidate gene for a possible malignant transformation of canine thyroid adenomas. Although the available cytogenetic data of canine thyroid adenomas are still insufficient the chromosomal region to which the canine THADA has been mapped seems to be no hotspot of chromosomal aberrations seen in canine thyroid adenomas.
Studying mechanical properties of canine trabecular bone is important for a better understanding of fracture mechanics or bone disorders and is also needed for numerical simulation of canine femora. No detailed data about elastic moduli and degrees of anisotropy of canine femoral trabecular bone has been published so far, hence the purpose of this study was to measure the elastic modulus of trabecular bone in canine femoral heads by ultrasound testing and to assess whether assuming isotropy of the cancellous bone in femoral heads in dogs is a valid simplification.
From 8 euthanized dogs, both femora were obtained and cubic specimens were cut from the centre of the femoral head which were oriented along the main pressure and tension trajectories. The specimens were tested using a 100 MHz ultrasound transducer in all three orthogonal directions. The directional elastic moduli of trabecular bone tissue and degrees of anisotropy were calculated.
The elastic modulus along principal bone trajectories was found to be 11.2 GPa ± 0.4, 10.5 ± 2.1 GPa and 10.5 ± 1.8 GPa, respectively. The mean density of the specimens was 1.40 ± 0.09 g/cm3. The degrees of anisotropy revealed a significant inverse relationship with specimen densities. No significant differences were found between the elastic moduli in x, y and z directions, suggesting an effective isotropy of trabecular bone tissue in canine femoral heads.
This study presents detailed data about elastic moduli of trabecular bone tissue obtained from canine femoral heads. Limitations of the study are the relatively small number of animals investigated and the measurement of whole specimen densities instead of trabecular bone densities which might lead to an underestimation of Young's moduli. Publications on elastic moduli of trabecular bone tissue present results that are similar to our data.
This study provides data about directional elastic moduli and degrees of anisotropy of canine femoral head trabecular bone and might be useful for biomechanical modeling of proximal canine femora.
Canine distemper morbillivirus (CDV) infection causes a frequently fatal systemic disease in a broad range of carnivore species, including domestic dogs. In CDV infection, classical serology provides data of diagnostic and prognostic values (kinetics of seroconversion) and is also used to predict the optimal vaccination age of pups. Routine CDV serology is still based on time- and cost-intensive virus neutralization assays (V-NA). Here, we describe a new capture-sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) that uses recombinant baculovirus-expressed nucleocapsid (N) protein of a recent CDV wild-type isolate (2544/Han95) for the detection of CDV-specific antibodies in canine sera. Recombinant antigen was produced with high efficacy in Heliothis virescens larvae. The capture-sandwich ELISA enabled a clear-cut qualitative evaluation of the CDV-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) and IgM serostatuses of 196 and 35 dog sera, respectively. Inter-rater agreement analysis (κ = 0.988) indicated that the ELISA can be used unrestrictedly as a substitute for the V-NA for the qualitative determination of CDV-specific IgG serostatus. In an attempt to semiquantify N-specific antibodies, a one-step-dilution (alpha method) IgG-specific ELISA was implemented. Alpha values of ≥50% showed very good inter-rater agreement (κ = 0.968) with V-NA titers of ≥1/100 50% neutralizing dose (ND50) as measured against the central European CDV wild-type isolate 2544/Han95 in canine sera originating from northern Germany. An ND50 titer of 1/100 is considered a threshold, and titers of ≥1/100 indicate a resilient, protective immunity. CDV N-specific antibodies of the IgM class were detected by the newly developed ELISA in 9 of 15 sera obtained from dogs with symptoms of acute distemper. In leucocytes of 5 of the 15 dogs (all of which were also IgM positive) CDV RNA was detected by reverse transcription (RT)-PCR. The recombinant capture-sandwich ELISA detecting N-specific antibodies of the IgG class provided superior sensitivity and specificity and thus represents a rapid and cost-effective alternative to classical CDV V-NA. By detection of specific IgM antibodies, the ELISA will be complementary to RT-PCR and V-NA in the diagnosis of acute distemper infections.