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  Home > Current Clinical Trials > Small Animal Medicine
 

Small Animal Medicine

CVM Mickelson Westie 2

Welcome to the Small Animal Medicine Studies Page!

If you would like more information about a study, or think you would like to enroll your pet, contact the person listed under the study. You may also Contact Us at the CIC.

The TAHITI Study: Tolerizing against human insulin in dogs with type-1 diabetes

Clinical Features and Genetic Basis of Pulmonary Fibrosis in Dogs

Genetic determinants of hyperlipidemia in Miniature Schnauzers


The TAHITI Study: Tolerizing against human insulin in dogs with type-1 diabetes

Current Status: Active and enrolling
Investigators: Jaime Modiano, VMD, PhD; Eva Furrow, VMD, PhD, DACVIM (Internal Medicine); Michelle Ritt, DVM, DACVIM (Internal Medicine); Jong-Hyuk Kim, DVM, PhD; and Timothy O’Brien, DVM, PhD, DACVP
This study is part of a multi-institutional collaboration among veterinarians, physicians and scientists at the University of Minnesota, Stanford University, the University of Colorado, and the University of Alabama, Birmingham
Contacts:
Dr. Modiano: modiano@umn.edu
Andrea Eckert, Study Technician: 612-625-3157 or aleckert@umn.edu

The study: The goal of the TAHITI diabetes study is to determine whether an injected, plasmid-based therapy administered weekly for 12 weeks leads to reduced anti-insulin immune responses and improved clinical performance in dogs with Type-1 Diabetes (T1D) treated with human neutral protamine Hagedorn (NPH) insulin as the standard of care. The concept behind this therapy is similar to allergy shots, aka allergic hyposensitization therapy, given for common allergens. In this case, we are hyposensitizing the body to insulin such that the body tolerates insulin therapy better. This approach has been shown to be safe and to improve the clinical status of laboratory animals and human patients with type-1 diabetes. Results of this study will provide information to develop a therapy for both dogs and humans with this incurable, chronic autoimmune disease.

Eligible dogs:

  • Dogs diagnosed with diabetes that is currently well-controlled on insulin therapy based on clinical and laboratory results, including a 10-12 hour glucose curve
  • Dogs must be treated with NPH insulin; if on another insulin, the treatment must be modified to NPH insulin, resulting is good control of the disease
  • Adequate supply of blood cells

Exclusion criteria (reasons a dog cannot enroll):

  • Dogs with any untreated, active urinary tract infection
  • Dogs with any major organ disease such as Stage II or higher chronic kidney disease or liver failure
  • Dogs with a definitive diagnosis of Cushing’s disease (hyperadrenocorticism)
  • Dogs with concurrent severe endocrine or autoimmune disease that requires corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive drugs such as cyclosporine or azathioprine for management (Addison’s, IMHA, autoimmune skin disease)
  • Dogs with neoplasia (cancer)

Visits:

  • Screening visit – history and physical exam including baseline body weight, assessment of appetite, frequency and amount of water intake and urination, 10-12 hour blood glucose curve, complete blood count, serum biochemistry profile, urine collection for urinalysis and urine culture. Test results will be needed to confirm eligibility (negative urine cultures are required for enrollment).
  • Week 1/Day 0 – history and physical exam, minimal serum biochemistry profile (glucose + liver panel) and canine pancreatic lipase, serum for antibody testing, whole blood for peripheral blood lymphocytes, fructosamine, urine collection for urinalysis, owner log and quality of life questionnaire, give first injection of study drug in clinic, observe for adverse response (30 min)
  • Week 2 through Week 11: Weekly visit to the Veterinary Medical Center for injection of investigational product. At home, owners keep daily log.
  • Week 6 – Quality of life questionnaire
  • Week 12 – physical exam, 10-12 hour blood glucose curve, complete blood count, serum biochemistry profile, canine pancreatic lipase, serum for antibody testing, whole blood for peripheral blood lymphocytes, fructosamine, owner log and quality of life questionnaire
  • Week 20 – physical exam, 10-12 hour blood glucose curve, complete blood count, serum biochemistry profile, serum for antibody testing, whole blood for peripheral blood lymphocytes, fructosamine, owner log

Costs of the study: The study will cover up to $250 of the costs for the initial screening visit, as well as the full cost of the experimental treatment and the recheck visits.

To enroll or learn more about the study, please contact Andrea Eckert or Dr. Modiano (above).

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Clinical Features and Genetic Basis of Pulmonary Fibrosis in Dogs

Current Status:  Active and enrolling.
Principal Investigator: Ned Patterson, DVM, PhD
Contact: Amber Winter, CVT, 612-624-1352 E-mail: alwinter@umn.edu

In that past 15 years, a form of Pulmonary (lung) Fibrosis (scarring) has been recognized in some dogs, almost exclusively in West Highland white terriers (WHWT). We do not know currently what causes this or what genetics might contribute to it. A genetic predisposition in WHWT is suspected because only this breed has been reported to have confirmed pulmonary fibrosis (PF). We also do not have a known specific treatment to offer and therapy at best is to relieve the symptoms but does not affect disease progression.

We are looking for blood samples from WHWT with PF and healthy WHWT dogs over 8 years old, and chest x-rays on WHWT with low blood oxygen (determined from the blood sample). The blood samples will be used for DNA so we can compare affected dogs with unaffected dogs to see if we can detect gene mutations. We hope to identify gene mutations that might predispose dogs to PF. If these are found and verified, they could be used as a test to diagnose PF in the future and as a help in breeding decisions to help decrease the number of WHWT with PF. 

Some of the dogs with low blood oxygen in this study will have the opportunity of a CT scan which will help in full diagnosis of possible PF.

Benefits to the owner: no charge for study procedures and free physical exam. If your dog has low blood oxygen, X-rays will help in further diagnosis. Some dogs will receive a CT at no charge. No other compensation is available, however, you will be contributing to discoveries that could help diagnose and eventually treat PF in dogs, and possibly people.

To participate, please contact Amber Winter above.

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Genetic determinants of hyperlipidemia in Miniature Schnauzers

Current Status:  Active and enrolling.
Principal Investigator: Eva Furrow, VMD, PhD, Dipl ACVIM
Contact: Dr. Eva Furrow  Phone: 612-625-7493 E-mail: furro004@umn.edu

Primary/familial hyperlipidemia, high blood lipid levels, is a common problem in Miniature Schnauzers, affecting more than 75% of the breed by age 10. The disorder has been associated with pancreatitis, gall bladder mucoceles, lipid deposits in the eyes, and neurological abnormalities in dogs. We are investigating genetic risk factors for hyperlipidemia. We recently identified a mutation in a major lipid metabolism gene. Our goal is to determine if this mutation increases risk for hyperlipidemia and/or has other negative consequences. We also aim to discover additional mutations that contribute to hyperlipidemia in the breed. Ultimately, we hope to obtain information that will aid in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of the disease.

We are seeking purebred Miniature Schnauzers that are at least 8 years of age. They cannot have hypothyroidism, diabetes mellitus, Addison's disease or Cushing's disease, though we may be interesting in recruiting your dog for a different study if one of these conditions is present. They also cannot be on steroid medications (prednisone, prednisolone, methylprednisolone, dexamethasone, etc). Dogs will need to be fasted on the morning of the appointment.

All study participants will receive a thorough health screening consisting of a biochemistry panel, complete blood count, triglyceride (lipid) level, thyroid level, urinalysis, and urinary protein determination. There is also $50 compensation per dog for participating in the study. Study enrollment is anticipated to run from January - December 2015.

If you are interested in the study, please contact Dr. Furrow at 612-625-6222 or furro004@umn.edu.

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For more information on our Small Animal Medicine Department, please click here .

 

 



 

 

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