August 2019 Research Roundup

A look at some of the latest published research studies coming from the NC State College of Veterinary Medicine this month …


Combating Animal and Human Joint Infections

Both equine and porcine models can be effectively used to study bacterial biofilms that form in human joint infections, according to new research co-authored by Jessica Gilbertie, Lauren Schnabel and Megan Jacob.

Bacterial invasion of synovial joints, seen in conditions such as infectious or septic arthritis, is difficult to treat in humans and animals. Free-floating clumps called biofilms are present in infectious arthritis and periprosthetic joint infection. Because of biofilm phenotypes, bacteria in infected joints show increased tolerance to antimicrobials.

The study’s team observed Staphylococcus aureus and other pathogens adapt to the same biofilm phenotype in both equine and porcine synovial fluid, similar to humans. The study, appearing in PLoS One, also notes that enzymatic dispersal of synovial fluid aggregates restores antimicrobial activity.

Future studies are needed in order to explore the use of equine or porcine models to identify new drug targets to fight infectious disease.

Read the study here.


Defining Characteristics of Neurological Disorder SRMA

Golden retrievers and wirehaired pointing griffons should now be considered among the breeds recognized to develop steroid-responsive meningitis-arteritis, or SRMA, a common inflammatory neurologic disorder.

A study published in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine looked into whether breed differences exist in clinical features, treatment response and relapse in a group of North American dogs with SRMA. The breeds represented most often included the golden retriever, Bernese mountain dog, wirehaired pointing griffon, boxer and beagle. No breed differences were identified when considering clinical severity, diagnostic findings or clinical outcome.

Treatment with higher corticosteroid dosages is correlated with more severe adverse effects and worse quality of life, but the study found that it may not improve clinical outcome. The research is authored by Karen Munana, Natasha Olby, Christopher Mariani, Peter Early, Julie Nettifee and Jeanie Lau.

Read the study here.


Preventing the Spread of Salmonella

Research co-authored by Oscar Fletcher finds that potential in direct-feed microbial Calsporin and prebiotic IMW5 to reduce Salmonella shedding in feces.

The study, published in Poultry Science, also found that the two treatments may also enhance ileal mucosal health and improve growth performance of young domestic turkeys.

Salmonella is a leading human food-borne pathogen commonly associated with poultry and poultry products.

Read the study here.


Tracking Vector-Borne Cat Diseases

Most feline vector-borne diseases in North America have been minimally studied in domestic cats. A new study from Barbara Qurollo published in Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice offers a comprehensive survey of characteristics and recent findings related to FVBDs.

Qurollo notes that North American cats are exposed to a wide range of FVBDs, but that many of the diseases are linked to nonspecific clinical abnormalities and may not be routinely considered by clinicians in differential diagnoses.

Veterinarians may be more likely to associate tick-borne disease with dogs rather than cats, Qurollo says, but cats in North America are routinely exposed to ticks. Veterinarians are advised to consider ectoparasite prevention for all feline patients.

Read the study here.


New Genome Sequence of Impactful Bacterial Strain

The first genome sequence of a particular strain of Brucella abortus, a devastating bacterium found in cattle populations that causes premature fetal death, has been outlined in a study co-authored by Sid Thakur.

The research appears in Microbiology Resource Announcements and outlines the genome sequence of biovar 3 strain BAU21/S4023, isolated from a dairy cow in Bangladesh. Brucella species infect all livestock, wild animals and marine mammals, and human Brucellosis is a significant global public health and economic burden.

The sequence allows for in-depth analysis of genomic structure and a deeper understanding of the strain’s virulence and pathogenesis, essential information for vaccine development.

Read the study here.


Easing Post-surgery Glaucoma Complications

Topical ophthalmic pirfenidone may decrease fibrosis, or excess fibrous tissue, following canine glaucoma shunt surgery, according to new research published in Veterinary Ophthalmology.

Researchers evaluated tissue levels, safety and efficacy of 0.5% and 1% pirfenidone in decreasing subconjunctival fibrosis in dogs. Pirfenidone led to thinner fibrous capsules and could potentially be used indefinitely due to minimal side effects.

Hans Westermeyer, Beth Salmon, Ronald Baynes, James Yeatts, Annie Oh and Freya Mowat authored the study.

Read the study here.