Uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) is responsible for non-shivering thermogenesis in brown/beige adipocytes in humans and rodents. Previously, we showed unexpected expression of UCP1 in bovine skeletal muscles. Here we evaluated Ucp1 mRNA levels in the muscle tissue of Japanese Black steers. Expression of Ucp1 was higher in 30-month-old cattle than in 26-month-old cattle. Levels of myosin heavy chain (Myh)1, an MYH predominantly expressed in fast-twitch muscles, were also significantly higher in cattle aged 30 months. A similar tendency was observed in the expression of other Myhs that are highly expressed in fast-twitch muscles, Myh2 and Myh4. Ucp1 expression was positively correlated with expression of Myh1, Myh2, and Myh4. Our results indicate the possibility of Ucp1 expression in fast-twitch muscle fibers.
Immunotherapy is a breakthrough in human cancer therapy and has become a major concern in veterinary oncology. However, in cats, many unclear points of the tumor microenvironment exist, including immune checkpoint molecules. A reason is that very few monoclonal antibodies have been proven to react with feline molecules. Therefore, this study investigated whether anti-human programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) monoclonal antibody, clone 28-8, which is currently commercially available, can also recognize feline PD-L1 by flow cytometry, immunoprecipitation, and immunohistochemical (IHC) staining. We confirmed that the antibody’s specificity by flow cytometry and immunoprecipitation using NIH3T3 cells transfected with feline PD-L1. Additionally, we revealed that PD-L1 was expressed on the surface of some feline cell lines by flow cytometry and clone 28-8 antibody unbound to the cells where feline PD-L1 was knocked out. Furthermore, IHC analysis revealed that PD-L1 was expressed in macrophages in the spleen and lymph nodes from healthy cats and mast cell tumor cells. Therefore, we indicated that the clone 28-8 antibody is a valuable tool in detecting feline PD-L1, and further analysis of tumor tissues is expected in the future.
Hemorrhage syndrome in adipose tissues in the crest of the neck (HSCN), specifically in hemorrhagic adipose tissues on the longitudinally sectioned surface of the neck fat at the dorsal nuchal ligament, is prevalent in heavy horse breeds. Herein, we aimed to establish an ultrasonographic method to successfully diagnose HSCN in heavy horse breeds and assess its efficacy. Horses with homogeneous echogenicity images were included in the control group, whereas those with linear high-echogenicity images were classified as having HSCN. Horses with confirmed linear high-echogenicity images exhibited pathological features and significantly higher percentages of adipose tissue with hemorrhage than those observed in horses with homogeneous echogenicity images (P<0.01). Our results suggest the effectiveness of ultrasonography in identifying and diagnosing HSCN.
The novel domestic cat hepadnavirus (DCH), a member of the Hepadnaviridae, was first detected in Australia and has recently been identified in more countries. In this study, we explored the DCH genome using next-generation sequencing of a plasma sample from a cat with a fever of unknown cause. Nucleotide sequence analysis showed the virus to be relatively genetically distant from the first reported DCH in Australia, showing 89% homology. Then we conducted an epidemiological survey by PCR of plasma samples collected from 203 cats that visited a veterinary hospital for diagnosis and treatment. Two of the 203 surveyed cats a were positive for DCH. One of the two positive cases had elevated liver enzymes of unknown etiology, and the other had hepatocellular adenoma. Our study indicated that DCH infection was observed in domestic cats in the Tokyo area of Japan as well as other reported areas in the world. Further investigations are needed to define the clinical importance of DCH.
Glucocorticoid preparations have anti-inflammatory effects, and are commonly used in the equine clinical setting; however, such treatments can cause a number of side effects. Adrenal insufficiency is an adverse effect induced by the suppression of adrenal function following drug administration. This study aimed to investigate the influence of two glucocorticoid preparations, dexamethasone and hydrocortisone, on adrenocortical function in horses. The usual doses of dexamethasone and hydrocortisone preparations in equine practice were administered intramuscularly to six horses, and peripheral blood was collected at different time points. Concentrations of dexamethasone and hydrocortisone in the plasma, before and after drug administration, were measured using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Considering circadian rhythms in endogenous hydrocortisone levels, hormone concentrations, before and after drug administration, were compared at the same time of the day. Plasma dexamethasone concentrations were below the limit of quantification at 72 hr post-administration. Plasma hydrocortisone concentrations were significantly lower from 1 to 72 hr after administration. After hydrocortisone preparation administration, plasma hydrocortisone levels were significantly higher until 9 hr, and significantly lower at 24 and 48 hr. The suppression rate of endogenous hydrocortisone ranged over 2.2–5.3% with dexamethasone treatment and 17.5–45.7% with hydrocortisone treatment. The study clearly indicated the effects of glucocorticoids on adrenocortical function in horses and provided basic knowledge about the selection and prescription of glucocorticoid preparations and setting the withdrawal times in equine clinical setting.
The susceptibility of 218 extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL)-producing Enterobacteriaceae isolates from companion animals to three cephamycins (cefmetazole, flomoxef, and latamoxef) was investigated. Phenotypic testing found 8 of 120 Klebsiella pneumoniae (KP) and 15 of 69 Enterobacter cloacae (EC) isolates were ESBL and AmpC β-lactamase (ABL) co-producers. Isolates of KP, Proteus mirabilis, and EC that only produced ESBL exhibited susceptibility rates to cefmetazole (95.5%, 82.7%, and 9.3%), flomoxef (99.1%, 96.6%, and 74.0%), and latamoxef (99.1%, 100%, and 100%), respectively. Notably, isolates of KP and EC co-producing ESBL and ABL had significantly lower susceptibility rates to the studied drugs when compared with only ESBL producers. This implies that the in vitro activity of cephamycins against ESBL-producing bacteria can differ depending on ABL production and bacterial species.
Urine neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) is a marker of acute kidney injury and indicates tubular damage. Lupus nephritis-associated renal injury is characterized by damage to the glomeruli and tubular portions of the kidneys. Therefore, NGAL concentrations are expected to vary according to the severity of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). In this study, samples from (NZB × NZW) F1 mice at an advanced stage of SLE were used to determine whether serum and urine NGAL concentrations or the urine NGAL:creatinine (uNGAL/C) ratio can be used to reflect diet, disease state, and treatment efficacy. Additionally, the relationship between the levels of NGAL and various cytokines in the serum in SLE was evaluated. Mice were divided into the following four groups (n=15): CN, chow diet and no treatment (saline; intraperitonially injected [i.p.]; 200 μL/day); CP, chow diet and methylprednisolone (i.p.; 5 mg/kg/day); HN, high-fat diet and no treatment (saline [i.p.]; 200 μL/day); and HP, high-fat diet and methylprednisolone treatment (i.p.; 5 mg/kg/day) every day from 6 to 42 weeks of age. The serum and urine NGAL levels and uNGAL/C values were significantly lower in the CP group than those in the CN group. Further, serum NGAL concentration demonstrated a strong positive correlation with urine NGAL levels, uNGAL/C, urine protein concentrations, urine protein:creatinine ratio, and the expression of several cytokines associated with SLE pathogenesis (interleukin [IL]-6, tumor necrosis factor [TNF]-α, and interferon-induced protein [IP]-10). These results suggest that NGAL has a strong positive correlation with the clinicopathological parameters and several key cytokines in SLE.
A 9-year-old female meerkat (Suricata suricatta) succumbed to progressive abdominal distension, anorexia, and depression. Necropsy revealed an extensively distended abdomen with ascites and markedly enlarged liver. The liver had multiple yellowish masses and displaced the thoracic cavity and abdominal organs. There was no evidence of metastatic lesions based on the gross and microscopic findings. Histologically, the liver mass was composed of locally invasive well-differentiated neoplastic adipocytes with Oil Red O-positive lipid vacuoles. Immunohistochemistry revealed positive immunoreactivity to vimentin, S-100 and negative to pancytokeratin, desmin, smooth muscle actin (SMA), ionized calcium-binding adapter molecule 1 (IBA-1). Thus, the primary well differentiated hepatic liposarcoma was diagnosed based on gross, histological and immunohistochemistry results.
Na+/Ca2+ exchangers (NCX) are an exchange transporter of Na+ and Ca2+ ions on the plasma membrane. There are three types of NCX: NCX1, NCX2, and NCX3. We have been working for many years to understand the role of NCX1 and NCX2 in gastrointestinal motility. In this study, we focused on the pancreas, an organ closely related to the gastrointestinal tract, and used a mouse model of acute pancreatitis to investigate a possible role for NCX1 in the pathogenesis of pancreatitis. We characterized a model of acute pancreatitis induced by excessive doses of L-arginine. We administered the NCX1 inhibitor SEA0400 (1 mg/kg) 1 hr prior to L-arginine-induced pancreatitis and evaluated pathological changes. Mice treated with NCX1 inhibitors show exacerbation of the disease with decreased survival and increased amylase activity in response to L-arginine-induced experimental acute pancreatitis, and this exacerbation correlates with increased autophagy mediated by LC3B and p62. These results suggest that NCX1 has a role in regulating pancreatic inflammation and acinar cell homeostasis.
L-amino acid oxidase (LAAO) is a metabolic enzyme that converts L-amino acids into ketoacids, ammonia, and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). The generated H2O2 has previously been shown to have antibacterial and gut microbiota-modulatory properties in LAO1 knock-out (KO) mice. Since most microbial metabolites reach the liver through the portal vein, we examined gut-liver interactions in LAO1 KO mice. We found lower total cholesterol levels, higher glutamic pyruvic transaminase (GPT) levels in the serum, and higher pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNA expression in the liver tissue. In wild-type (WT) mice, LAO1 was expressed in gut tissues (ileum and colon). Microbiome analysis revealed that the abundance of some bacteria was altered in LAO1 KO mice. However, short-chain fatty acid (SCFAs) levels in cecal feces and gut permeability did not change. Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) revealed that feces from LAO1 KO mice slightly stimulated pro-inflammatory cytokine expression in the liver. During metabolomic analysis, 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) was the only metabolite found to be significantly upregulated in the portal and abdominal veins of the LAO1 KO mice. Intraperitoneal administration of 5-ALA to WT mice significantly increased IL-6 mRNA expression in the liver. These observations suggest that gut LAO1 plays a role in regulating 5-ALA production and that a high level of 5-ALA stimulates the liver to increase pro-inflammatory cytokine expression by disrupting LAO1 in mice.
Environmental pollution caused by antimicrobial resistance is a global public health concern. To investigate the contribution of nutrias (Myocastor coypus) to the presence of extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL)–producing Enterobacterales in the Ijira River, prevalence of ESBL–producing Enterobacterales in their feces was examined using deoxycholate-hydrogen sulfide-lactose agar containing cefotaxime. Additionally, the composition of the fecal microbiota of nutria was examined using DNA metabarcoding analysis of the 16S ribosomal RNA gene and compared with that of Amami rabbit, deer, fox, and raccoon dog. The absence of ESBL–producing Enterobacterales and substantially lower abundance of Enterobacterales was observed in the feces of nutrias than in those of other wild mammals. Our results suggest the low potential of antimicrobial-resistant Enterobacterales persistence and dissemination by nutria.
Pentosan polysulfate sodium (PPS) is a heparin-like polysaccharide that is applied as a therapeutic treatment for osteoarthritis (OA) in animals. This study investigated the efficacy of different molecular weights PPS (1,500–7,000 Da) on the phenotype regulatory and chondrogenic properties of canine articular chondrocytes. The cytotoxicity of PPS on chondrocytes was assessed using flow cytometry and 3-(4,5-dimehylthiazolyl-2)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay. After 72 hr of exposure, PPS did not induce chondrocyte apoptosis, regardless of molecular weight. In addition, chondrogenic properties were determined according to the mRNA and protein levels in micromass-cultured chondrocytes. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis confirmed that PPS promotes a chondrogenic phenotype in chondrocytes in a molecular weight-dependent manner, with significant upregulation of collagen type II alpha 1 chain, aggrecan, and SRY-box transcription factor 9 (SOX9) mRNA levels relative to those in the control. However, the collagen type I alpha 2 chain mRNA level simultaneously increased after 7,000 Da PPS treatment. PPS exposure also increased collagen type II and SOX9 protein production in a molecular weight-dependent manner and inhibited Akt phosphorylation in chondrocytes. Alcian blue staining indicated that PPS treatment enhanced proteoglycan deposition in micromass cultures, with stronger effects observed in 5,000 and 7,000 Da groups. Overall, these results indicate that PPS exerts protective effects on the chondrocyte phenotype and may represent a potential therapeutic target for OA treatment. Increasing the molecular weight of PPS could enhance these anabolic effects.
Micro-endoscopic discectomy (MED) or microscopic discectomy (MD) have been performed for disc herniation in humans. The purpose of this study was to compare the invasiveness of the hemilaminectomy in dogs between the approach using a cylindrical retractor for the MED/MD and a conventional open surgical approaches in dogs. First, as preliminary studies, we analyzed the suitability of the cylindrical retractor for the vertebral body of small to medium-sized dogs on the X-ray computed tomographic images using the three-dimensional analysis software, and confirmed that it was possible to open a bone window of an approximate length of 1.72 clto the spinal canal with the cylindrical retractor with a diameter 17 mm using two medium-sized canine cadavers. Next, to determine difference in the invasiveness of hemilaminectomy, the magnitude of tissue damage, surgical stress and postoperative pain were compared between the conventional open approach (hemilaminectomy group: HL group, n=6) and the surgical approach using the cylindrical retractor (MD group, n=6) in 12 beagle dogs. The plasma creatine phosphokinase, C-reactive protein and cortisol concentrations, incision length and University of Melbourne Pain Scale scores after the hemilaminectomy were significantly lower in the MD group than in the HL group. There were no significant differences between the durations of surgery and the other evaluated indices. The approach using the MD can provide a less invasive hemilaminectomy than the conventional approach in dogs.
Like in many other African countries, pig production is increasing in Tanzania. To support farmers and stakeholders, it is important to increase our understanding of porcine pathogens present in the country. Currently, little is known about the circulation of porcine circovirus-2 (PCV-2) and porcine circovirus-3 (PCV-3). For this reason, samples from 124 pigs collected throughout the country between 2018 to 2022 were screened by PCR for the presence of PCV-2 and PCV-3. Sequencing and phylogenetic analysis of positive amplicons identified two PCV-2 genotypes (a and d). Limited genetic heterogenicity was observed among the PCV-3. This study provides important data on pathogens present in pigs in Tanzania and should be of use veterinary authorities involved in porcine disease management.
Among bats, rhinolophoids and yangochiropterans, but not pteropodids, exhibit laryngeal echolocation. Although Rousettus has been regarded as the only pteropodid capable of echolocation using tongue clicks, recent evidence suggests that other species of pteropodids are also capable of echolocation using wing clicks. Studies on laryngeal echolocators suggest that delicate ear movements are essential for the echolocation behavior of bats and that the cervicoauricularis muscles play a critical role in such ear movements. In this study, we observed the gross anatomy of cervicoauricularis muscles in three species of pteropodids (Cynopterus sphinx, Eonycteris spelaea, and Rousettus leschenaultii) to examine whether ear muscle anatomy varies among pteropodids with different echolocation types and between pteropodids and laryngeal echolocating bats. We found that M. cervicoauricularis profundus originates from the nuchal crest in tongue-click echolocators (R. leschenaultii) and from the midline in wing-click echolocators (C. sphinx and E. spelaea). In general, tongue-click echolocation using high click rates is considered to be more sophisticated in terms of sonar performance than wing-click echolocation. M. cervicoauricularis profundus originating from the nuchal crest (CPNC) is not common in non-bat laurasiatherian mammals, but can be found in laryngeal echolocating bats. As it pulls the ear pinna caudally in the horizontal plane and increases the access to sound, CPNC found in R. leschenaultii and laryngeal echolocating bats may be a key characteristic of the sophisticated active echolocation behavior of bats.
Several studies have documented the effects of anesthesia on pigeons. However, previous studies using pigeons have not examined a combination of injection and inhalation anesthesia. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of intramuscular (IM) administration of alfaxalone in conjunction with mask induction on the quality of isoflurane anesthesia in healthy domestic pigeons (Columba livia domestica). In a randomized, double-blind, crossover study consisting of two phases, six healthy adult pigeons were anesthetized twice with a washout period of 7 days. In each phase, the pigeons were randomly assigned IM administration of either alfaxalone (4 mg/kg) or an equal volume of normal saline. After 20 min, anesthesia was induced with isoflurane through a face mask. Once voluntary movement of the limbs and eyelids ceased, the face mask was removed, and the trachea was intubated. The quality of anesthesia was assessed by scoring sedation prior to anesthetic induction, induction, and recovery. Heart rate, respiratory rate, cloacal temperature, and noninvasive systolic, diastolic, and mean arterial pressure were recorded before the IM injection (baseline) and during the procedure. The minimum anesthetic concentration of isoflurane was determined using the “bracketing” method. Moderate sedation (sedation scores of 2 and 3) was observed only with alfaxalone administration. In the alfaxalone group, the induction score was significantly higher (better induction quality) than in the control group (P=0.041). The combination of alfaxalone and mask induction was effective for inhalation anesthesia in pigeons.
An adult 22-year-old, male southern cassowary (Casuarius casuarius) presented for lethargy, dysorexia and soft feces. Clinical findings under chemical immobilization were unremarkable except for heterophilic toxic changes on blood smear, reduced albumin/globulin ratio and potentially elevated liver parameters. The animal was treated for suspected hepatobiliary insufficiency and received supportive treatment with daily subcutaneous fluids and medication and was monitored with a quality-of-life assessment. It was eventually euthanized after further deterioration. Post-mortem examination revealed vegetative valvular endocarditis, bile duct obstruction, cholangiohepatitis and splenitis with intralesional Enterococcus casseliflavus isolated. This is a first documented case of E. casseliflavus infection in a bird with multiorgan involvement.