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1.  Influence of the cardiac glycoside digoxin on cardiac troponin I, acid–base and electrolyte balance, and haematobiochemical profiles in healthy donkeys (Equus asinus) 
Background
The effect of digoxin administration on the serum concentration of the cardiac troponin I (cTnI) has not been reported to date in equidae. This study was therefore designed to evaluate the effect of digoxin on cardiac cell damage in donkeys (Equus asinus) as assessed by cTnI, acid–base and electrolyte balance and haematobiochemical profiles. Ten clinically healthy donkeys were given an IV infusion of digoxin at a dose of 14 μg/kg. Blood samples were collected from the donkeys up through 72 h post-injection.
Results
Three of the donkeys exhibited increased heart and respiratory rates post-injection. In the other seven animals, the heart and respiratory rates were lower 4 h post-injection. The serum digoxin concentration increased significantly at many time points after injection. The serum concentration of cTnI did not differ significantly between pre- and post-injection. An increase in blood pH was noted at 3 h after digoxin injection. There were also increases in PO2 and in oxygen saturation. Decreases in PCO2 at 2 to 48 h post-injection as well as a decrease in blood lactate at 4 h post-injection were observed. The serum concentration of glucose remained significantly elevated at all-time points after digoxin injection.
Conclusions
It is concluded that administration of digoxin to healthy donkeys (14 μg/kg) did not result in elevations of serum cTnI concentration, signs of digoxin intoxication, ECG abnormalities and did not increase serum concentrations of blood urea nitrogen and creatinine.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-10-64
PMCID: PMC3984684  PMID: 24621180
Cardiac troponin I; Digoxin; Donkey; Heart failure; Intoxication
2.  Ultrasonography of the liver and kidneys of healthy camels (Camelus dromedarius) 
The Canadian Veterinary Journal  2012;53(12):1273-1278.
This study describes the ultrasonography of the liver and kidneys of healthy camels (Camelus dromedarius). Images of the liver were obtained from the 11th to 5th intercostal spaces (ICSs). The distance between the dorsal liver margin and the midline of the back was shortest (39.1 ± 7.4 cm) at the 11th ICS and increased cranially to 5th ICS. The size of the liver was largest at the 9th ICS and smallest at the 5th ICS. In 6 camels the right kidney was visualized from the 10th and 11th ICSs and upper right flank and in the 10th and 11th ICSs in the remaining 16 camels. In all camels, the left kidney was imaged from the caudal left flank. In 21 camels, the differentiation between the renal cortex and medulla was clearly visible in the ultrasonograms. Ultrasonographic description of the liver and kidneys provides a basic reference for diagnosing hepatic and renal disorders in camels.
PMCID: PMC3500117  PMID: 23729824
3.  Transabdominal ultrasonographic findings in goats with paratuberculosis 
The Canadian Veterinary Journal  2012;53(10):1063-1070.
This study describes the transabdominal ultrasonographic findings in 54 goats with confirmed Johne’s disease (JD). Compared with the control group (0.8 ± 0.4 mm thick), the test group presented with mild (2.8 ± 0.2 mm), moderate (4.2 ± 0.4 mm), and severe (6.9 ± 1.1 mm) thickening of the intestinal wall. The most outstanding ultrasonographic findings were pronounced enlargement of the mesenteric lymph nodes in 49 goats. In 36 goats, the enlarged lymph nodes showed a hypoechoic cortex and a hyperechoic medulla. In 7 goats, the cortex and medulla were hypoechoic. In 5 goats, the cortex and the medulla could not be differentiated. In the remaining cases, the cortex and medulla contained small hypoechoic lesions. Necropsy findings included enlarged mesenteric lymph nodes in 52 goats and thickening of the small intestinal wall in 30 goats. Compared with the postmortem results, the antemortem ultrasound sensitivity in detecting intestinal wall thickness and enlarged mesenteric lymph nodes was 80% and 94%, respectively.
PMCID: PMC3447308  PMID: 23543924
4.  Hepatocyte apoptosis in dairy cattle during the transition period 
The objective of this study was to investigate hepatocyte apoptosis in dairy cows during the transition period. Four clinically healthy, pregnant dairy cattle were used. The cows had no clinical diseases throughout this study. Blood samples were collected and livers were biopsied from the cows at 3 different times: 3 weeks before expected partition (wk −3); during parturition (wk 0), and 3 weeks (wk +3) after parturition. The damage to deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) caused by hepatocytes was evaluated by comet assay. The apoptotic features of hepatocytes were examined by immunohistochemistry and electron microscopic analyses. The hepatic triglyceride content markedly increased at wk 0 and wk +3 compared with the values at wk −3. The results of the comet assay showed increases in the mean tail moment values of hepatic cells after parturition in all cows, which suggested increased DNA damage. Histopathologically, the hepatocytes began to contain lipid droplets at wk 0 and were severely opacified at wk +3. Caspase-3-positive and single-stranded DNA-(ssDNA)-positive cells were first detected in the liver after parturition. Condensation of nuclear chromatin, a typical sign of apoptosis, was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy after parturition. These results suggest that apoptosis is induced in hepatocytes of dairy cows around parturition and may result from lipotoxicity in hepatocytes.
PMCID: PMC3460600  PMID: 23543948
5.  Clinical, ultrasonographic, and pathologic findings in 70 camels (Camelus dromedarius) with Johne’s disease 
The Canadian Veterinary Journal  2012;53(5):543-548.
This study evaluated the use of ultrasonography for the diagnosis of Johne’s disease in camels (Camelus dromedarius). Seventy camels with confirmed Johne’s disease were examined by ultrasonography and subsequent necropsy; 15 healthy camels were included as controls. The most outstanding findings were visible enlargement of the mesenteric lymph nodes in 52 (74%) camels. Lesions had either echogenic (26%; n = 18) or anechoic (69%; n = 48) capsule and the contents were either anechoic (21%; n = 15), echogenic (27%; n = 19), or heterogeneous (46%; n = 32). Clumps of echogenic tissue interspersed with fluid pockets were imaged between the intestinal loops in 9 (13%) camels. There was mild, moderate, or severe thickening and corrugation of the intestinal wall, excessive anechoic fluid in the abdominal cavity in 18 (26%) camels, increased hepatic brightness in 30 (43%) camels, and pericardial and pleural effusions in 22 (31%) camels. Sensitivity values for detecting intestinal lesions and enlarged mesenteric lymph nodes were 95% and 84%, respectively.
PMCID: PMC3327595  PMID: 23115369
6.  Echocardiography of the normal camel (Camelus dromedaries) heart: technique and cardiac dimensions 
Background
Echocardiography and intra-cardiac dimensions have not previously been reported in adult camels despite its potential application for medical purpose. The aim of this study was to describe the results of a prospective study, aiming to report normal cardiac appearance and normal chamber dimensions in adult camels (Camelus dromedarius).
Results
On the right side, when the probe was placed in the 5th or 4th intercostal space (ICS), the caudal long-axis four-chamber view of the ventricles, atria, and the interventricular septum was obtained. Placing the probe slightly more cranially in the 4th ICS, the caudal long-axis four-chamber view and the caudal long-axis view of the left ventricular outflow tract (LVOT) were imaged. In 7 camels, a hybrid view between a “four-chamber” and “LVOT view” was imaged from the same position. The short-axis view of the ventricles was obtained in the 4th ICS where the transducer was rotated between 0° and 25°. Placement of the transducer in the 3rd ICS allowed visualisation of the right ventricular outflow tract (RVOT). On the left side, when the probe was placed in the 5th or 4th ICS, a four-chamber view was obtained. The LVOT is imaged in the 4th ICS and the RVOT was seen from the 3rd ICS.
Conclusions
This study showed that it is possible to obtain good-quality echocardiograms in adult camels and provide normal cardiac dimensions. This study could be used as a reference for further studies concerning camels with cardiac diseases.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-8-130
PMCID: PMC3430584  PMID: 22862855
7.  Diagnostic ultrasonography in cattle with abdominal fat necrosis 
This study describes the ultrasonographic findings in 14 cows with abdominal fat necrosis. Ultrasonography of the abdomen revealed the presence of heterogeneous hyperechoic masses and hyperechoic omentum with localized masses floating in a hypoechoic peritoneal fluid. A hyperechogenic rim was imaged around both kidneys. The intestines were coated with hyperechoic capsules and the intestinal lumens were constricted. Ultrasonographic examination of the pancreatic parenchyma showed an overall increased echogenicity which was homogenously distributed in 3 cases. A diagnosis of abdominal fat necrosis was made with ultrasound-guided biopsy of the echogenic masses, and thereafter at postmortem examination. Results from this study demonstrate the efficacy of ultrasonography as an imaging modality for antemortem diagnosis of abdominal lipomatosis in cattle. To the authors’ knowledge, this study is the first that illustrates ultrasonographic findings in cattle affected with abdominal lipomatosis.
PMCID: PMC3239146  PMID: 22753961
8.  Changes of very low-density lipoprotein concentration in hepatic blood from cows with fasting-induced hepatic lipidosis 
The purpose of this study was to evaluate changes of very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) components in hepatic blood (HB) from 5 nonlactating nonpregnant cows fasted from days 0 to 3 and subsequently refed to day 10 and, in addition, to assess those of other lipoproteins. Increased phospholipid concentrations in each lipoprotein after the start of fasting suggested their availability for the surface lipids of lipoproteins. Although the VLDL-triglyceride (TG) concentration in HB from all cows increased on day 1, the value on day 4 became similar to that on day 0. However, the concentration on day 10 was significantly increased. In all cows, the decreased ratio of the VLDL-TG concentration in HB to the non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) concentration in portal blood (PB) on day 4 appeared to reflect relatively decreased secretion of TG as VLDL by NEFA excessively mobilized to the liver via PB. The markedly increased ratio on day 10 was considered to contribute to the improvement of hepatic lipidosis.
PMCID: PMC2949346  PMID: 21197233

Results 1-8 (8)