Editor's Choice Articles

Editor’s Choice articles are based on recommendations by the scientific editors of MDPI journals from around the world. Editors select a small number of articles recently published in the journal that they believe will be particularly interesting to authors, or important in this field. The aim is to provide a snapshot of some of the most exciting work published in the various research areas of the journal.

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Article

Article
Renal Senescence, Telomere Shortening and Nitrosative Stress in Feline Chronic Kidney Disease
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(12), 314; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8120314 - 08 Dec 2021
Viewed by 1237
Abstract
Kidney tissues from cats with naturally occurring chronic kidney disease (CKD) and adult and senior cats without CKD were assessed to determine whether telomere shortening and nitrosative stress are associated with senescence in feline CKD. The histopathologic assessment of percent global glomerulosclerosis, inflammatory [...] Read more.
Kidney tissues from cats with naturally occurring chronic kidney disease (CKD) and adult and senior cats without CKD were assessed to determine whether telomere shortening and nitrosative stress are associated with senescence in feline CKD. The histopathologic assessment of percent global glomerulosclerosis, inflammatory infiltrate, and fibrosis was performed. Senescence and nitrosative stress were evaluated utilizing p16 and iNOS immunohistochemistry, respectively. Renal telomere length was evaluated using telomere fluorescent in situ hybridization combined with immunohistochemistry. CKD cats were found to have significantly increased p16 staining in both the renal cortex and corticomedullary junction compared to adult and senior cats. Senior cats had significantly increased p16 staining in the corticomedullary junction compared to adult cats. p16 staining in both the renal cortex and corticomedullary junction were found to be significantly correlated with percent global glomerulosclerosis, cortical inflammatory infiltrate, and fibrosis scores. p16 staining also correlated with age in non-CKD cats. Average telomere length was significantly decreased in CKD cats compared to adult and senior cats. CKD cats had significantly increased iNOS staining compared to adult cats. Our results demonstrate increased renal senescence, telomere shortening, and nitrosative stress in feline CKD, identifying these patients as potential candidates for senolytic therapy with translational potential. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diseases of the Kidneys and Urinary Tract in Small Animals)
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Article
Use of Deoxycorticosterone Pivalate by Veterinarians: A Western European Survey
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(11), 271; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8110271 - 09 Nov 2021
Viewed by 1065
Abstract
This study aims to gather knowledge about the use of deoxycorticosterone pivalate (DOCP) by Western European Veterinarians (WEV) in dogs with typical hypoadrenocorticism. An observational cross-sectional study was conducted using an online survey, translated into four languages and disseminated to veterinary affiliates and [...] Read more.
This study aims to gather knowledge about the use of deoxycorticosterone pivalate (DOCP) by Western European Veterinarians (WEV) in dogs with typical hypoadrenocorticism. An observational cross-sectional study was conducted using an online survey, translated into four languages and disseminated to veterinary affiliates and mailing lists in six countries of Western Continental Europe. Respondents were tasked to share their therapeutic approach to hypoadrenocorticism, whether they preferred DOCP or fludrocortisone and the specific practical use of DOCP. One-hundred and eighty-four responses were included. Of these, 79.9% indicated that they preferred prescribing DOCP over fludrocortisone as a first-line treatment for mineralocorticoid supplementation. A total of 154 respondents had used DOCP at least once. Eighty percent of those who reported their initial dosage prescribed 2.2 mg/kg. After starting DOCP, 68.2% of the respondents assess electrolytes 10 and 25 days after administration following manufacturer instructions. In stable dogs, electrolytes are monitored quarterly, monthly, semi-annually, and annually by 44.2%, 34.4%, 16.9%, and 4.6% of respondents respectively. When treatment adjustment is required, 53% prefer to reduce dosage while 47% increase the interval between doses. Overall, DOCP is the preferred mineralocorticoid supplementation among WEV. Reported variability underlies the need to investigate the best strategies for DOCP use and therapeutic adjustments. Full article
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Article
Teladorsagia Circumcincta Galectin-Mucosal Interactome in Sheep
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(10), 216; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8100216 - 04 Oct 2021
Viewed by 1386
Abstract
Teladorsagia circumcincta is the most important gastrointestinal parasite in the livestock industry in temperate regions around the world, causing great economic losses. The infective third-stage larvae (L3) of Teladorsagia circumcincta secrete a large number of excretory-secretory (E/S) molecules, some of which are likely [...] Read more.
Teladorsagia circumcincta is the most important gastrointestinal parasite in the livestock industry in temperate regions around the world, causing great economic losses. The infective third-stage larvae (L3) of Teladorsagia circumcincta secrete a large number of excretory-secretory (E/S) molecules, some of which are likely to play critical roles in modulating the host immune response. One of the most abundant E/S molecules is a protein termed Tci-gal-1, which has similarity to mammalian galectins. Galectins are a family of carbohydrate-binding molecules, with characteristic domain organisation and affinity for β-galactosids that mediate a variety of important cellular functions including inflammation and immune responses. To understand the role of Tci-gal-1 at the host–parasite interface, we used a proteomics pull-down approach to identify Tc-gal-1 interacting proteins from sheep abomasal scrapes and whole tissue. A total of 135 unique proteins were identified from whole abomasal tissue samples, while 89 proteins were isolated from abomasal scrape samples. Of these proteins, 63 were present in both samples. Many of the host proteins identified, such as trefoil factors and mucin-like proteins, play critical roles in the host response. The identification of Tci-gal-1 binding partners provides new insights on host–parasite interactions and could lead to the development of new control strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Veterinary Microbiology, Parasitology and Immunology)
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Article
Mice Treated Subcutaneously with Mouse LPS-Converted PrPres or LPS Alone Showed Brain Gene Expression Profiles Characteristic of Prion Disease
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(9), 200; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8090200 - 21 Sep 2021
Viewed by 1330
Abstract
Previously, we showed that bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) converts mouse PrPC protein to a beta-rich isoform (moPrPres) resistant to proteinase K. In this study, we aimed to test if the LPS-converted PrPres is infectious and alters the expression of genes [...] Read more.
Previously, we showed that bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) converts mouse PrPC protein to a beta-rich isoform (moPrPres) resistant to proteinase K. In this study, we aimed to test if the LPS-converted PrPres is infectious and alters the expression of genes related to prion pathology in brains of terminally sick mice. Ninety female FVB/N mice at 5 weeks of age were randomly assigned to 6 groups treated subcutaneously (sc) for 6 weeks either with: (1) Saline (CTR); (2) LPS from Escherichia coli 0111:B4 (LPS), (3) one-time sc administration of de novo generated mouse recombinant prion protein (moPrP; 29-232) rich in beta-sheet by incubation with LPS (moPrPres), (4) LPS plus one-time sc injection of moPrPres, (5) one-time sc injection of brain homogenate from Rocky Mountain Lab (RLM) scrapie strain, and (6) LPS plus one-time sc injection of RML. Results showed that all treatments altered the expression of various genes related to prion disease and neuroinflammation starting at 11 weeks post-infection and more profoundly at the terminal stage. In conclusion, sc administration of de novo generated moPrPres, LPS, and a combination of moPrPres with LPS were able to alter the expression of multiple genes typical of prion pathology and inflammation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Veterinary Microbiology, Parasitology and Immunology)
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Article
Relative Effects of Dietary Administration of a Competitive Exclusion Culture and a Synbiotic Product, Age and Sampling Site on Intestinal Microbiota Maturation in Broiler Chickens
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(9), 187; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8090187 - 06 Sep 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1350
Abstract
In this research, the effects of early post-hatch inoculation of a competitive exclusion product (Br) and the continuous feeding of a synbiotic supplement (Sy) containing probiotic bacteria, yeast, and inulin on the production traits and composition of ileal chymus (IC), ileal mucosa (IM), [...] Read more.
In this research, the effects of early post-hatch inoculation of a competitive exclusion product (Br) and the continuous feeding of a synbiotic supplement (Sy) containing probiotic bacteria, yeast, and inulin on the production traits and composition of ileal chymus (IC), ileal mucosa (IM), and caecal chymus (CC) microbiota of broiler chickens were evaluated. The dietary treatments had no significant effects on the pattern of intestinal microbiota or production traits. The digestive tract bacteriota composition was affected mostly by the sampling place and age of birds. The dominant family of IC was Lactobacillaceae, without change with the age. The abundance of the two other major families, Enterococcaceae and Lachnospiraceae decreased with the age of birds. In the IM, Clostridiaceae was the main family in the first three weeks. Its ratio decreased later and Lactobacillaceae became the dominant family. In the CC, Ruminococcaceae and Lachnospiraceae were the main families with decreasing tendency in the age. In IC, Br treatment decreased the abundance of genus Lactobacillus, and both Br and Sy increased the ratio of Enterococcus at day 7. In all gut segments, a negative correlation was found between the IBD antibody titer levels and the ratio of genus Leuconostoc in the first three weeks, and a positive correlation was found in the case of Bifidobacterium, Rombutsia, and Turicibacter between day 21 and 40. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Veterinary Microbiology, Parasitology and Immunology)
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Article
Molecular Characterization of Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis Isolated over a 15-Year Period in Switzerland
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(8), 151; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8080151 - 30 Jul 2021
Viewed by 1664
Abstract
Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis biovar Ovis is the etiological agent of the contagious and chronic disease caseous lymphadenitis (CLA) in sheep and goats. The economic impact of CLA in Switzerland remains largely unknown, and the transmission modalities, as well as the genetic diversity of [...] Read more.
Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis biovar Ovis is the etiological agent of the contagious and chronic disease caseous lymphadenitis (CLA) in sheep and goats. The economic impact of CLA in Switzerland remains largely unknown, and the transmission modalities, as well as the genetic diversity of circulating strains, are poorly understood. This work presents further characterization data for 215 C. pseudotuberculosis isolates from sheep, goats and a dromedary originating from Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein, collected over a 15-year period. The isolates were classified into the two biovars Ovis and Equi, analyzed for the presence of the diphtheria-like toxin gene and characterized using MLSA. All sheep and goat isolates were classified as C. pseudotuberculosis biovar Ovis. The isolate from a dromedary was classified as biovar Equi. No isolates harboring the diphtheria-like toxin gene were detected. Phylogenetic analysis of the concatenated sequences of four genes revealed the existence of 24 clusters. There was no correlation between MLSA sequence types, year of isolation and the geographical origin of the isolates. These findings confirm the presence of several MLSA sequence types in the study area and over a 15-year period. Moreover, no sheep- and goat-specific MLSA sequence types were found. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Veterinary Microbiology, Parasitology and Immunology)
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Article
Accessing Dietary Effects on the Rumen Microbiome: Different Sequencing Methods Tell Different Stories
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(7), 138; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8070138 - 19 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1880
Abstract
The current study employed both amplicon and shotgun sequencing to examine and compare the rumen microbiome in Angus bulls fed with either a backgrounding diet (BCK) or finishing diet (HG), to assess if both methods produce comparable results. Rumen digesta samples from 16 [...] Read more.
The current study employed both amplicon and shotgun sequencing to examine and compare the rumen microbiome in Angus bulls fed with either a backgrounding diet (BCK) or finishing diet (HG), to assess if both methods produce comparable results. Rumen digesta samples from 16 bulls were subjected for microbial profiling. Distinctive microbial profiles were revealed by the two methods, indicating that choice of sequencing approach may be a critical facet in studies of the rumen microbiome. Shotgun-sequencing identified the presence of 303 bacterial genera and 171 archaeal species, several of which exhibited differential abundance. Amplicon-sequencing identified 48 bacterial genera, 4 archaeal species, and 9 protozoal species. Among them, 20 bacterial genera and 5 protozoal species were differentially abundant between the two diets. Overall, amplicon-sequencing showed a more drastic diet-derived effect on the ruminal microbial profile compared to shotgun-sequencing. While both methods detected dietary differences at various taxonomic levels, few consistent patterns were evident. Opposite results were seen for the phyla Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes, and the genus Selenomonas. This study showcases the importance of sequencing platform choice and suggests a need for integrative methods that allow robust comparisons of microbial data drawn from various omic approaches, allowing for comprehensive comparisons across studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Rumen Microbiome)
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Article
Improved Cardiovascular Tolerance to Hemorrhage after Oral Resveratrol Pretreatment in Dogs
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(7), 129; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8070129 - 12 Jul 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2033
Abstract
Resveratrol has been shown to preserve organ function and improve survival in hemorrhagic shock rat models. This study investigated whether seven days of oral resveratrol could improve hemodynamic response to hemorrhage and confer benefits on risk of acute kidney injury (AKI) without inducing [...] Read more.
Resveratrol has been shown to preserve organ function and improve survival in hemorrhagic shock rat models. This study investigated whether seven days of oral resveratrol could improve hemodynamic response to hemorrhage and confer benefits on risk of acute kidney injury (AKI) without inducing coagulopathy in a canine model. Twelve greyhound dogs were randomly allocated to receive oral resveratrol (1000 mg/day) or placebo for seven days prior to inducing hemorrhage until a targeted mean blood pressure of ≤40 mmHg was achieved. AKI biomarkers and coagulation parameters were measured before, immediately following, and two hours after hemorrhage. Dogs were euthanized, and renal tissues were examined at the end of the experiment. All investigators were blinded to the treatment allocation. A linear mixed model was used to assess effect of resveratrol on AKI biomarkers and coagulation parameters while adjusting for volume of blood loss. A significant larger volume of blood loss was required to achieve the hypotension target in the resveratrol group compared to placebo group (median 64 vs. 55 mL/kg respectively, p = 0.041). Although histological evidence of AKI was evident in all dogs, the renal tubular injury scores were not significantly different between the two groups, neither were the AKI biomarkers. Baseline (pre-hemorrhage) maximum clot firmness on the Rotational Thromboelastometry (ROTEM®) was stronger in the resveratrol group than the placebo group (median 54 vs. 43 mm respectively, p = 0.009). In summary, seven days of oral resveratrol did not appear to induce increased bleeding risk and could improve greyhound dogs’ blood pressure tolerance to severe hemorrhage. Renal protective effect of resveratrol was, however, not observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Addressing New Therapeutic Strategies Using Models)
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Article
In Vitro Evaluation of Ozonated Water Treatment on the Viability of Eimeria Oocysts and Giardia Cysts from Water Buffaloes: A Proof-of-Concept Study
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(6), 115; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8060115 - 18 Jun 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1810
Abstract
The aim of this proof-of-concept study was to evaluate the in vitro effects of ozonated water treatment on the viability of Eimeria oocysts and Giardia cysts isolated from naturally infected water buffaloes. Eimeria oocysts were divided into seven groups of six replicates that [...] Read more.
The aim of this proof-of-concept study was to evaluate the in vitro effects of ozonated water treatment on the viability of Eimeria oocysts and Giardia cysts isolated from naturally infected water buffaloes. Eimeria oocysts were divided into seven groups of six replicates that were treated with ozonated water at three ozone concentrations (0.5, 1, and 2 mg/L) and two contact times (five and ten minutes), and one group (negative control) that was exposed to non-treated water. Giardia cysts were divided into nine groups of six replicates and were treated with ozonated water at four ozone concentrations (0.1, 0.3, 0.5, and 1 mg/L) and two contact times (one and two minutes), while one group (negative control) was exposed to non-treated water. The results of the ozonated water treatment gave a 33% inhibition of the sporulation of Eimeria oocysts and rendered 96.3% of Giardia cysts non-viable, suggesting that ozonated water treatment could be a promising alternative sanitation technology to common conventional disinfectants for reducing intestinal protozoa infections in water buffaloes; though further in vitro and in vivo tests are needed. Full article
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Article
Monitoring of Organochlorine Pesticide and Polychlorinated Biphenyl Residues in Common Swifts (Apus apus) in the Region of Hannover, Lower Saxony, Germany
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(5), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8050087 - 16 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2170
Abstract
The use of pesticides is associated with the decline of several avian species. In this study, we monitored the organochlorine contaminants in common swifts (Apus apus) in the years 2016 to 2018. These long-distance migrants breed in Europe and winter in [...] Read more.
The use of pesticides is associated with the decline of several avian species. In this study, we monitored the organochlorine contaminants in common swifts (Apus apus) in the years 2016 to 2018. These long-distance migrants breed in Europe and winter in Africa. Their only feeding source is aerial plankton. Pooled organ samples of 42 adult and 40 juvenile swifts were tested with the multi-residue method by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-TOF/MS). Predominantly, 4,4′-DDE, dieldrin, hexachlorobenzene (HCB), lindane and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were found in most of these common swifts. Only 4,4′-DDE (adult: 83 ± 70 μg/kg, juvenile: 17 ± 39 μg/kg) and dieldrin (adult: 2 ± 3 μg/kg, juvenile: 0.3 ± 1 μg/kg) concentrations were significantly different between adult and juvenile birds. All detected concentrations in our study were far lower than the previously recorded pesticide concentrations of common swifts in Italy and those which are known to cause toxicity and death in birds. Full article
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Article
Portable Electronic Nose for Analyzing the Smell of Nasal Secretions in Calves: Toward Noninvasive Diagnosis of Infectious Bronchopneumonia
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(5), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8050074 - 27 Apr 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2762
Abstract
The paper demonstrates a new approach to identify healthy calves (“healthy”) and naturally occurring infectious bronchopneumonia (“sick”) calves by analysis of the gaseous phase over nasal secretions using 16 piezoelectric sensors in two portable devices. Samples of nasal secretions were obtained from 50 [...] Read more.
The paper demonstrates a new approach to identify healthy calves (“healthy”) and naturally occurring infectious bronchopneumonia (“sick”) calves by analysis of the gaseous phase over nasal secretions using 16 piezoelectric sensors in two portable devices. Samples of nasal secretions were obtained from 50 red-motley Holstein calves aged 14–42 days. Calves were subjected to rectal temperature measurements, clinical score according to the Wisconsin respiratory scoring chart, thoracic auscultation, and radiography (Carestream DR, New York, USA). Of the 50 calves, we included samples from 40 (20 “healthy” and 20 “sick”) in the training sample. The remaining ten calves (five “healthy” and five “sick”) were included in the test sample. It was possible to divide calves into “healthy” and “sick” groups according to the output data of the sensor arrays (maximum sensor signals and calculated parameters Ai/j) using the principal component linear discriminant analysis (PCA–LDA) with an accuracy of 100%. The adequacy of the PCA–LDA model was verified on a test sample. It was found that data of sensors with films of carbon nanotubes, zirconium nitrate, hydroxyapatite, methyl orange, bromocresol green, and Triton X-100 had the most significance for dividing samples into groups. The differences in the composition of the gaseous phase over the samples of nasal secretions for such a classification could be explained by the appearance or change in the concentrations of ketones, alcohols, organic carboxylic acids, aldehydes, amines, including cyclic amines or those with a branched hydrocarbon chain. Full article
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Article
Demographic and Pathogens of Domestic, Free-Roaming Pets and the Implications for Wild Carnivores and Human Health in the San Luis Region of Costa Rica
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(4), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8040065 - 20 Apr 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2322
Abstract
Habitat loss and degradation, restricted ranges, prey exploitation, and poaching are important factors for the decline of several wild carnivore populations and additional stress from infectious agents is an increasing concern. Given the rapid growth of human populations in some regions like Costa [...] Read more.
Habitat loss and degradation, restricted ranges, prey exploitation, and poaching are important factors for the decline of several wild carnivore populations and additional stress from infectious agents is an increasing concern. Given the rapid growth of human populations in some regions like Costa Rica, pathogens introduced, sustained, and transmitted by domestic carnivores may be particularly important. To better understand the significance of domestic carnivore pathogens for wildlife, we determine the prevalence of infection and possible mechanisms for contact between the two groups. The demographics, role in the household, and pathogens of pet dogs and cats was studied during three annual spay/neuter clinics in San Luis, Costa Rica. Most dogs were owned primarily as pets and guard animals, but ~10% were used for hunting. Cats were owned primarily as pets and for pest control. Both roamed freely outdoors. We detected high prevalences of some pathogens (e.g., carnivore protoparvovirus 1 and Toxoplasma gondii). Some pathogens are known to persist in the environment, which increases the probability of exposure to wild carnivores. This study demonstrated that domestic pets in San Luis, home to a number of protected and endangered wildlife species, are infected with pathogens to which these wild species are potentially susceptible. Additionally, results from our questionnaire support the potential for domestic and wild animal contact, which may result in disease spillover. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue One Health Approach to Veterinary Medicine)
Article
Assessing the Feasibility of Retrospective and Prospective Clinical Audit in Farm Animal Veterinary Practice
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(4), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8040062 - 13 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1869
Abstract
As a quality improvement tool, clinical audit has been extensively described in the medical literature. There is scant literature on the use of clinical audit in the farm animal veterinary setting. This study describes the process and feasibility of prospective and retrospective data [...] Read more.
As a quality improvement tool, clinical audit has been extensively described in the medical literature. There is scant literature on the use of clinical audit in the farm animal veterinary setting. This study describes the process and feasibility of prospective and retrospective data collection for farm animal clinical audit performed at three different farm animal practices in the United Kingdom. Retrospective clinical audit was difficult in all three practices due to barriers in establishing diagnosis and patient identity from clinical records. Prospective data collection proved feasible but depended on adequate case accrual and practitioner engagement. The decision to conduct clinical audit retrospectively or prospectively will depend on the topic to audit, the availability of data and the wishes of the team members involved. Further work is required looking at the use of clinical coding and alternatives to using practice management software to improve retrospective data availability for clinical audit. Full article
Article
Reduced Efficacy of Fenbendazole and Pyrantel Pamoate Treatments against Intestinal Nematodes of Stud and Performance Horses
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(3), 42; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8030042 - 05 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1862
Abstract
Nematodes are an important cause of disease and loss of performance in horses. Changes in the parasitic fauna of horses have occurred in the past few decades, making cyathostomins the major parasites in adult horses, while large strongyles have become less prevalent. Parascaris [...] Read more.
Nematodes are an important cause of disease and loss of performance in horses. Changes in the parasitic fauna of horses have occurred in the past few decades, making cyathostomins the major parasites in adult horses, while large strongyles have become less prevalent. Parascaris spp. remains the most important parasite infecting foals and weanlings. Anthelmintic resistance is highly prevalent in cyathostomins and Parascaris spp. worldwide and it must be factored into treatment decisions. To assess anthelmintic efficacy in Northern Italy, we sampled 215 horses from 17 sport and horse-breeding farms. Fecal egg count reduction tests (FECRT) were used to assess anthelmintic efficacy. Copromicroscopic analysis was performed using MiniFLOTAC before treatment with fenbendazole, pyrantel pamoate or ivermectin, and repeated 14 days post-treatment. Strongyle-type eggs were detected in 66.91% of horses (CI95% 61.40–73.79%), while Parascaris spp. was detected in 2.79% (CI95% 1.94–5.95%). Reduced efficacy against cyathostomins was observed for fenbendazole in 55.56% of the treated animals (CI95% 41.18–69.06%), and for pyrantel pamoate in 75% of animals (CI95% 30.06–95.44%). Ground-based actions must be set in place to promote the uptake of state-of-the-art worm control plans that will prevent clinical disease while minimizing the selection pressure of resistant parasites. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Italian Society of the Veterinary Sciences SISVet 2019)
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Article
Candidate Glycoprotein Biomarkers for Canine Visceral Hemangiosarcoma and Validation Using Semi-Quantitative Lectin/Immunohistochemical Assays
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(3), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8030038 - 27 Feb 2021
Viewed by 2108
Abstract
Visceral hemangiosarcoma (HSA) is one of the more frequent cancers in dogs and has a high metastatic rate and poor prognosis, as clinical signs only become apparent in advanced stages of tumor development. In order to improve early and differential diagnostic capabilities and [...] Read more.
Visceral hemangiosarcoma (HSA) is one of the more frequent cancers in dogs and has a high metastatic rate and poor prognosis, as clinical signs only become apparent in advanced stages of tumor development. In order to improve early and differential diagnostic capabilities and hence, prognosis for dogs with HSA, two types of biomarker are needed: a point-of-care diagnostic biomarker and a prognostic biomarker—preferentially based on samples obtained with minimally invasive methods. In this study, we applied a lectin magnetic bead array-coupled tandem mass spectrometry (LeMBA-MS/MS) workflow through discovery and validation phases to discover serum glycoprotein biomarker candidates for canine HSA. By this approach, we found that Datura stramonium (DSA), wheat germ agglutinin (WGA), Sambucus nigra (SNA), and Pisum sativum (PSA) lectins captured the highest number of validated candidate glycoproteins. Secondly, we independently validated serum LeMBA-MS/MS results by demonstrating the in situ relationship of lectin-binding with tumor cells. Using lectin-histochemistry and immunohistochemistry (IHC) for key proteins on tissues with HSA and semi-quantitation of the signals, we demonstrate that a combination of DSA histochemistry and IHC for complement C7 greatly increases the prospect of a more specific diagnosis of canine HSA. Full article
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Article
Swine Small Intestine Sealing Performed by Different Vessel Sealing Devices: Ex-Vivo Test
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(2), 34; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8020034 - 22 Feb 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2031
Abstract
This study aimed to evaluate the sealing quality of swine small intestine using different laparoscopic radiofrequency vessel sealing devices (two 5 mm: RFVS-1 and -2; one 10 mm: RFVS-3) and a harmonic scalpel (HS) compared to golden standard closure technique. The study was [...] Read more.
This study aimed to evaluate the sealing quality of swine small intestine using different laparoscopic radiofrequency vessel sealing devices (two 5 mm: RFVS-1 and -2; one 10 mm: RFVS-3) and a harmonic scalpel (HS) compared to golden standard closure technique. The study was divided into two arms. In study arm 1: n = 50 swine intestinal loops (10 per group) were transected with each instrument and the loops in which the devices provided complete sealing, at the gross inspection, were tested for maximum burst pressure (BP) and histological evaluation and compared to an automatic linear stapler. After the BP tests, the devices that achieved significantly lower BP values were excluded from the second arm. The RFVS-1 and -3 provided statistically significant results and were used in study arm 2, to obtain full-thickness biopsies along the antimesenteric border of the loop and were compared with hand-sewn intestinal closure (n = 30; 10 per group). The biopsies were histologically evaluated for thermal injury and diagnostic features, and intestinal loops tested for BP. RFVS-3 achieved comparable results (69.78 ± 4.23 mmHg, interquartile range (IQR) 5.8) to stapler closing technique (71.09 ± 4.22 mmHg, IQR 4.38; p > 0.05), while the RFVS-1 resulted in significantly (p < 0.05) lower BP (45.28 ± 15.23 mmHg, IQR 24.95) but over the physiological range, conversely to RFVS-2 (20.16 ± 7.19 mmHg, IQR 12.02) and HS (not measurable). RFVS-3 resulted not significantly different (p > 0.05) (45.09 ± 8.75 mmHg, IQR 10.48) than Suture (35.71 ± 17.51 mmHg, IQR 23.77); RFVS-1 resulted significantly lower values (23.96 ± 10.63 mmHg, IQR 9.62; p < 0.05). All biopsies were judged diagnostic. Data confirmed that RFVS-1 and -3 devices provided suitable intestinal sealing, with BP pressures over the physiological range. Conversely, the HS and RFVS-2 should not be considered for intestinal sealing. RFVS devices could be employed to obtain small intestine stump closure or full-thickness biopsies. However, further studies should be performed in live animals to assess the role of the healing process. Full article
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Article
Effect of Delivery Format on Student Outcomes and Perceptions of a Veterinary Medicine Course: Synchronous Versus Asynchronous Learning
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(2), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8020013 - 20 Jan 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2838
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic prompted instruction at many veterinary schools to switch to an emergency remote teaching format to prevent viral transmission associated with in-person synchronous lectures. This study surveyed student perspectives and academic performance in a pre-planned online second-year veterinary toxicology course given [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic prompted instruction at many veterinary schools to switch to an emergency remote teaching format to prevent viral transmission associated with in-person synchronous lectures. This study surveyed student perspectives and academic performance in a pre-planned online second-year veterinary toxicology course given at North Carolina State University in Spring 2020. This course relied on asynchronous narrated presentations for content delivery. This method of delivery predated the pandemic and was used throughout the course. Academic performance and patterns of access to materials in the online course was compared with the access patterns and performance of students given classroom-based synchronous teaching in Spring 2019. Assessments evaluated in this study were identical across courses. Students’ academic performance was unaffected by delivery method. Lack of instructor interaction was an important perceived barrier in the asynchronous course. Asynchronous course materials were uniformly accessed across all days of the week, while supplemental materials for the face-to-face course showed a weekly pattern. Moving from letter grades to pass/fail did not change access frequency to supplemental course materials but led to decreased video usage in the asynchronous course. Results suggest that although some veterinary students perceived the switch in delivery format negatively, the method of delivery did not adversely affect performance in this preclinical course. Full article
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Article
Evaluating the Histologic Grade of Digital Squamous Cell Carcinomas in Dogs with Dark and Light Haircoat—A Comparative Study of the Invasive Front and Tumor Cell Budding Systems
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8010003 - 30 Dec 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1947
Abstract
Canine digital squamous cell carcinomas (CDSCC) are particularly aggressive when compared to their occurrence in other locations. Although these neoplasms are more frequently seen in dark-haired dogs, such as Giant Schnauzers, there are no data checking whether these tumors are histologically different between [...] Read more.
Canine digital squamous cell carcinomas (CDSCC) are particularly aggressive when compared to their occurrence in other locations. Although these neoplasms are more frequently seen in dark-haired dogs, such as Giant Schnauzers, there are no data checking whether these tumors are histologically different between breeds. We histologically evaluated DSCC from 94 dogs. These were divided into two groups, namely, (1) dark-haired (N = 76) and (2) light-haired breeds (N = 18), further subdividing Group 1 into three subgroups, (1a) black breeds (n = 11), (1b) Schnauzers (n = 34) and (1c) black & tan breeds (n = 31). Adaptations from two different squamous cell carcinomas grading schemes from human and veterinary literature were used. Both systems showed significant differences when compared to Groups 1 and 2 in terms of final grade, invasive front keratinization, degree of invasion, nuclear pleomorphism, tumor cell budding, smallest tumor nest size and amount of tumor stroma. Group 2 was consistently better differentiated CDSCC than Group 1. However, there were no significant differences among the dark-haired breeds in any of the features evaluated. This study represents the first attempt to grade CDSCC while taking into account both phenotypical and presumptive genotypical haircoat color. In conclusion, CDSCC are not only more common in dark-haired dogs, they are also histologically more aggressive. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Anatomy, Histology and Pathology)
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Review

Review
Recognizing and Mitigating Canine Stress during Animal Assisted Interventions
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(11), 254; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8110254 - 27 Oct 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2313
Abstract
Animal-assisted Interventions (AAI) proliferated rapidly since clinicians and researchers first noted the positive effects animals have on people struggling with physical and mental health concerns. The intersection of AAI with the field of animal welfare evolved from considering animals’ basic needs, such as [...] Read more.
Animal-assisted Interventions (AAI) proliferated rapidly since clinicians and researchers first noted the positive effects animals have on people struggling with physical and mental health concerns. The intersection of AAI with the field of animal welfare evolved from considering animals’ basic needs, such as freedom from pain, to recognition that animals experience nuanced emotions. Current conceptualizations of the various roles of companion animals as an adjunct to treatments for humans emphasize not only the animals’ physical comfort and autonomy, but also their mental well-being and enjoyment of AAI activities. However, numerous challenges to effective monitoring of animals involved in AAI exist. This article focuses specifically on dogs, highlighting factors that may lead handlers and therapists to miss or ignore canine stress signals during human-animal interactions and offers strategies to recognize and ameliorate dogs’ distress more consistently. The primary goals of this discussion are to summarize the current thinking on canine well-being and to highlight practical applications of animal welfare principles in real-world AAI settings. The paper highlights contextual factors (e.g., physical setting, patient demand), human influences (e.g., desire to help), and intervention characteristics (e.g., presence or absence of a dog-specific advocate) that may promote or inhibit humans’ ability to advocate for therapy dogs during AAI activities. Deidentified examples of each of these factors are discussed, and recommendations are provided to mitigate factors that interfere with timely recognition and amelioration of canine distress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Interdisciplinary Considerations in Human–Animal Interventions)
Review
Recent Advances in Molecular Genetic Tools for Babesia
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(10), 222; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8100222 - 08 Oct 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1406
Abstract
Development of in vitro culture and completion of genome sequencing of several Babesia parasites promoted the efforts to establish transfection systems for these parasites to dissect the gene functions. It has been more than a decade since the establishment of first transfection for [...] Read more.
Development of in vitro culture and completion of genome sequencing of several Babesia parasites promoted the efforts to establish transfection systems for these parasites to dissect the gene functions. It has been more than a decade since the establishment of first transfection for Babesia bovis, the causative agent of bovine babesiosis. However, the number of genes that were targeted by genetic tools in Babesia parasites is limited. This is partially due to the low efficiencies of these methods. The recent adaptation of CRISPR/Cas9 for genome editing of Babesia bovis can accelerate the efforts for dissecting this parasite’s genome and extend the knowledge on biological aspects of erythrocytic and tick stages of Babesia. Additionally, glmS ribozyme as a conditional knockdown system is available that could be used for the characterization of essential genes. The development of high throughput genetic tools is needed to dissect the function of multigene families, targeting several genes in a specific pathway, and finally genome-wide identification of essential genes to find novel drug targets. In this review, we summarized the current tools that are available for Babesia and the genes that are being targeted by these tools. This may draw a perspective for the future development of genetic tools and pave the way for the identification of novel drugs or vaccine targets. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tick-Borne Pathogens and Symbionts)
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Review
Research Progress on the Mechanism of the Acupuncture Regulating Neuro-Endocrine-Immune Network System
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(8), 149; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8080149 - 30 Jul 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2045
Abstract
As one of the conventional treatment methods, acupuncture is an indispensable component of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Currently, acupuncture has been partly accepted throughout the world, but the mechanism of acupuncture is still unclear. Since the theory of the neuro-endocrine-immune network was put forward, [...] Read more.
As one of the conventional treatment methods, acupuncture is an indispensable component of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Currently, acupuncture has been partly accepted throughout the world, but the mechanism of acupuncture is still unclear. Since the theory of the neuro-endocrine-immune network was put forward, new insights have been brought into the understanding of the mechanism of acupuncture. Studies have proven that acupuncture is a mechanical stimulus that can activate local cell functions and neuroreceptors. It also regulates the release of related biomolecules (peptide hormones, lipid hormones, neuromodulators and neurotransmitters, and other small and large biomolecules) in the microenvironment, where they can affect each other and further activate the neuroendocrine-immune network to achieve holistic regulation. Recently, growing efforts have been made in the research on the mechanism of acupuncture. Some researchers have transitioned from studying the mechanism of acupuncture as a single linear pathway to using systems approaches, including metabolomics, genomics, proteomics and biological pathway analysis. This review summarizes the research progress on the neuro-endocrine-immune network related mechanism of acupuncture and discusses its current challenges and future directions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Frontiers of Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture in Veterinary Medicine)
Review
Design-Based Approach for Analysing Survey Data in Veterinary Research
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(6), 105; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8060105 - 08 Jun 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2263
Abstract
Sample surveys are an essential approach used in veterinary research and investigation. A sample obtained from a well-designed sampling process along with robust data analysis can provide valuable insight into the attributes of the target population. Two approaches, design-based or model-based, can be [...] Read more.
Sample surveys are an essential approach used in veterinary research and investigation. A sample obtained from a well-designed sampling process along with robust data analysis can provide valuable insight into the attributes of the target population. Two approaches, design-based or model-based, can be used as inferential frameworks for analysing survey data. Compared to the model-based approach, the design-based approach is usually more straightforward and directly makes inferences about the finite target population (such as the dairy cows in a herd or dogs in a region) rather than an infinite superpopulation. In this paper, the concept of probability sampling and the design-based approach is briefly reviewed, followed by a discussion of the estimations and their justifications in the context of several different elementary sampling methods, including simple random sampling, stratified random sampling, and one-stage cluster sampling. Finally, a concrete example of a complex survey design (involving multistage sampling and stratification) is demonstrated, illustrating how finding unbiased estimators and their corresponding variance formulas for a complex survey builds on the techniques used in elementary sampling methods. Full article
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Review
The Complex Diseases of Staphylococcus pseudintermedius in Canines: Where to Next?
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8010011 - 18 Jan 2021
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 3434
Abstract
Staphylococcus pseudintermedius is a pathogenic bacterium of concern within the veterinary sector and is involved in numerous infections in canines, including topical infections such as canine pyoderma and otitis externa, as well as systemic infections within the urinary, respiratory and reproductive tract. The [...] Read more.
Staphylococcus pseudintermedius is a pathogenic bacterium of concern within the veterinary sector and is involved in numerous infections in canines, including topical infections such as canine pyoderma and otitis externa, as well as systemic infections within the urinary, respiratory and reproductive tract. The high prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus pseudintermedius (MRSP) within such infections is a growing concern. Therefore, it is crucial to understand the involvement of S. pseudintermedius in canine disease pathology to gain better insight into novel treatment avenues. Here, we review the literature focused on S. pseudintermedius infection in multiple anatomic locations in dogs and the role of MRSP in treatment outcomes at these niches. Multiple novel treatment avenues for MRSP have been pioneered in recent years and these are discussed with a specific focus on vaccines and phage therapy as potential therapeutic options. Whilst both undertakings are in their infancy, phage therapy is versatile and has shown high success in both animal and human medical use. It is clear that further research is required to combat the growing problems associated with MRSP in canines. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Resistant Staphylococci in Animals)
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Other

Systematic Review
Cat and/or Dog Ownership, Cardiovascular Disease, and Obesity: A Systematic Review
Vet. Sci. 2021, 8(12), 333; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci8120333 - 17 Dec 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1601
Abstract
Pet ownership, the most common human–animal interaction, is believed to bestow positive health benefits onto pet owners. However, there is limited research on substantiating these assertions. The aim of this review was to systematically identify, evaluate, and summarize primary research on the relationship [...] Read more.
Pet ownership, the most common human–animal interaction, is believed to bestow positive health benefits onto pet owners. However, there is limited research on substantiating these assertions. The aim of this review was to systematically identify, evaluate, and summarize primary research on the relationship between cat and/or dog ownership and cardiovascular disease (CVD), type 2 diabetes (T2D), and obesity to inform future research on pet ownership and chronic disease. How pet ownership was defined/measured, and identification of the chronic disease variables and health behaviors most often measured were emphasized. Two researchers independently searched PubMed and Web of Science, where One Health literature are mostly likely to be indexed, for peer-reviewed literature on pet ownership and CVD, T2D, and obesity. A review of 4541 titles and abstracts for relevance resulted in 34 manuscripts eligible for full-text review. Two researchers assessed each eligible manuscript and extracted data only from those that met the inclusion criteria (n = 14). Ten studies on CVD, four studies on obesity, and zero studies on T2D met the study criteria. The CVD and obesity variables varied and were not well described. The relationship between pet ownership and CVD and obesity varied (positive, negative, mixed effects, and no effect). Generalizability lacked across all studies: most studies were with Non-Hispanic White populations. Other areas of weakness were quality of study outcomes and instrument validity. Operationalization of pet ownership varied (from no verification to confirmed pet registration). Integration of the evidence-based influence of the human–animal connection through pet ownership on CVD and obesity may make prevention, mitigation, and treatment strategies more robust. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Interdisciplinary Considerations in Human–Animal Interventions)
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