Dogs

Clinical trials for dogs

  • Sponsor:  Private Foundation

    CSRC Protocol #: 029-14

    Status: Not Currently enrolling

    Description:

    Cardiomyopathy is a common affliction of the Boxer breed that is manifested by serious ventricular arrhythmias, dilation and reduced vigor of contraction of the heart, or both. The arrhythmic form of the disease bears a striking resemblance to arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) in people, an important cause of sudden cardiac death in young human athletes that is characterized by replacement of the normal heart muscle by fat, scar tissue, and inflammation.

    Current treatment strategies focus on controlling symptomatic arrhythmias, however no medical treatment has been shown to prevent sudden cardiac death. Current therapies also fail to address the underlying structural changes in the heart muscle that inexorably progress, resulting in worsening arrhythmia, cardiac dilation and, in some patients congestive heart failure.

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) exert anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic effects that may prove useful in attenuating the inflammation and remodeling of the heart muscle that characterizes the disease, in turn improving arrhythmia frequency and potentially quality of life or survival times of dogs with ARVC. The major goal of this study is to evaluate preliminary safety of intravenous administration of MSCs in Boxers with ARVC, and to assess their effect on arrhythmia frequency, improving cardiac structural abnormalities, or prolonging survival in affected animals by reducing inflammation or deposition of scar tissue in the heart.

    Inclusion/Exclusion Criteria: 

    A total of 12 client-owned Boxers of any sex or age with cardiomyopathy will be enrolled in this study. Dogs with advanced congestive heart failure, clinically significant congenital heart disease, kidney or liver disease, cancer, active infection, or autoimmune disease will be excluded from the study.

    Client Benefits:

    The study will cover the costs for your dog’s bloodwork, echocardiogram, blood pressure measurement, ECG and Holter monitoring, 4 hours of observation and continuous ECG monitoring following the injection, and recheck visits during the 6 month study period. The study will also cover up to $500 of any costs incurred due to complications from the study; it will not cover any other medication or hospitalization costs. Your pet’s participation will allow us to gain information which will help in the treatment of Boxers and potentially people with this condition. You understand that your animal’s participation in this study may not alleviate or cure his/her ailment

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

  • Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:                                                                                                                                                                                The purpose of this study is to better understand what causes gastric dilatation and volvulus (GDV) in dogs. GDV, or bloat, is a common condition in large and giant breed dogs. Due to the importance of GDV in many dog breeds, several large previous studies have investigated potential risk factors for the development of GDV.It is known that there is no single cause for GDV, rather its occurrence is multifactorial, with both genetic and environmental factors contributing. As well as a genetic analysis we want to see if dogs with GDV have different types or amounts of proteins, hormones and other molecules in their blood and tissue, or different bacteria in their gastrointestinal tract.

    We will enroll dogs in five groups:

    1. Dogs with acute GDV
    2. Dogs with chronic bloat and/or gastric instability
    3. Dogs with acute gastric outflow or small intestinal obstruction secondary to foreign material
    4. Healthy control dogs
    5. Euthanized control dogs; and
    6. Euthanized dogs with GDV or gastrointestinal foreign body obstruction

    Inclusion/Exclusion Criteria:

    Group a)  Dogs with Acute GDV

    Inclusion criteria:  Dogs with GDV confirmed via a right lateral abdominal radiograph

    Exclusion criteria:  none

    Group b)  Dogs with chronic bloat

    Inclusion criteria:  Clinical signs consistent with chronic bloat

    Exclusion criteria:  GDV at any time

    Group c) Dogs with acute GI obstruction secondary to foreign material

    Inclusion criteria:  Dogs with GI obstruction secondary to foreign material that require exploratory laparotomy.

    Exclusion criteria:  History of GDV. GI perforation.,  Non-obstructive foreign body that does not require surgery

    Group d) Healthy control dogs

    Inclusion criteria:  Healthy

    Exclusion criteria:  History of GDV

    Group e) Euthanized control dogs

    Inclusion criteria:  Euthanized donated dogs

    Exclusion criteria:  History of GDV

    Group f) Euthanized dogs with GDV or GI foreign body obstruction

    Inclusion criteria:  Dogs that will be euthanized after a diagnosis of GDV confirmed via a right lateral abdominal radiograph, or GI obstruction secondary to foreign material confirmed via abdominal radiographs or ultrasound.

    Exclusion criteria: Surgical treatment of GDV or GI obstruction

    Client Benefits:

    This study will not cover any of the costs associated with treating your dog; although all study related sample collection and analysis is covered by the study. As such, the cost of treatment is the same regardless of whether your dog is enrolled in the study. Your dog’s participation will allow us to gain information which will help us to develop a better understanding of why some large and giant breed dogs develop GDV.

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at: clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

  • Sponsor: Private Foundation

    CSRC Protocol #: 007.15

    Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    The goal of this study is to develop a new treatment for perianal fistulas in dogs.  The current treatments for this severe condition (steroids and cyclosporine) are ineffective in a high percentage of patients and the disease relapses frequently.  Also, cyclosporine is expensive and has many side effects, so a major goal is to develop a therapy which reduces the need for immunosuppressive agents, such as cyclosporine. Previous trials using intralesional injections of stem cells have shown very encouraging results.

    Inclusion Criteria:                               

    • Adult dogs, any breed and either gender, with a clinical diagnosis of anal fistulas (presence of chronic peri-anal fistula(s) with clinical signs of tenesmus, dyschezia)and present with partial or complete relapse from cyclosporine A therapy
    • Age range 1-12 years
    • Weight range 2-100 kg

     

    Exclusion Criteria:

    • Dogs younger than 1 year or older than 12 years
    • Other severe diseases ( severe osteoarthritis, cardiac disease, neoplasia, skin disease)
    • Dogs that have had surgery (cryosurgery, anal sac resection, tail amputation) to treat the anal fistulas

     

    Client Benefits:

    The study will cover all the costs of the examinations (once your dog is found eligible) and stem cell treatments including sedation.  The study will provide $300 to participants toward purchase of cyclosporine during the 1 year study.

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at: clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

  • Sponsor: Private Foundation

    IACUC protocol#: G2015-58                                                                                                                                 Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    The goal of this study is to compare plasma biomarkers in the form of extracellular RNA in dogs with mitral valve disease presenting with versus without congestive heart failure.

    This study will be an important step towards making exosome analysis a useful and readily available tool for evaluating the progression, the molecular basis for remodeling, and development of specific therapies for mitral valve disease.

    Inclusion/exclusion criteria:

    All dogs should be over eight years of age in order to control for age related differences.

    Healthy: for controls the dogs will be defined as a healthy animal with a normal physical exam, normal CBC/chemistry panel/UA and no evidence of a heart murmur as documented by a veterinarian

    There will be four populations that will be included in this study:

    • Group 1: Healthy dogs with no cardiac disease
    • Group 2: Dogs with mitral valve disease not in congestive heart failure.
    • Group 3: Dogs with mitral valve disease in congestive heart failure.

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

  • Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    The success of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is very low, in veterinary (as well as human) patients. Even after successful return to spontaneous circulation, sequela to CPR include repeated cardiac arrest, brain disease, and multi-organ system failure. Low oxygen levels to the brain is the major factor contributing to these poor outcomes. There is a critical gap in our understanding of the physiology and prognosis after CPR, which has led to failure to substantially improve our success in dealing with this problem.

    An important goal of this study is to understand how chemicals called nucleic acids (RNA) are altered in post-CPR canine patients. The study will focus on very small RNA (miRNA). The specific objective of this study is to understand which miRNA are released into the circulation of canine patients after cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) versus non-CPR patients hospitalized in the ICU for other reasons.

    There is tremendous potential value in identifying circulating miRNA after CPR. First, miRNA may assist in predicting outcome (prognosticating) in individual patients in the future. Second, miRNAreleased into the circulation are indicators of major epigenetic disturbances as a consequence of hypoxia-ischemia.    Knowledge of these miRNA may lead to the design of novel therapies to counteract these effects, for example employing stem cells that release mitigating miRNA.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Group 1:  Six dogs that have undergone CPR according to standard protocols in the TCSVM emergency room and have returned to spontaneous circulation for a minimum of 1 hr.

    Group 2:  Six dogs hospitalized in the ICU that have not experienced CPR or significant hypoxemia or ischemia (e.g. GDV, hemorrhage, stroke) will be selected for sampling at the same time (AM vs. PM). Dogs will be similar age and gender as post-CPR patient.

    Any breed is acceptable.

    Exclusion Criteria:

    • Dogs < 10 kg
    • Dogs with prior hypoxemia insult (prior arrest or CPR, GDV, stroke, hemorrhagic shock, congestive heart failure, etc).
    • Dogs with a diagnosis of cancer
    • Dogs with hemolytic disease
    • Dogs for which blood sampling is contraindicated (recent fluid/colloid resuscitation)

     

    Client Benefits:

    The study will cover the cost of a blood panel (NOVA) at the same time the sample is being collected; this is testing that is normally performed every few hours during recovery from CPR, it is also testing that is normally performed in sick dogs. Your pet’s participation will also allow us to gain information which will help in the treatment of other dogs with this condition. You understand that your animal’s participation in this study may not alleviate or cure his/her ailment

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at: clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

  • Sponsor: Private Foundation

    CSRC Protocol #: 117.15

    Enrollment: Currently enrolling

    Description:

    Dogs presenting with acute, concussive disk herniations share many similarities with human spinal cord injury patients. The prognosis for return to normal function is very guarded in dogs with acute onset of paraplegia and loss of pain perception in hind legs. The likelihood to regain ambulatory status is within the range of 43-69%. Fecal incontinence was observed in 41% and urinary incontinence in 32% of dogs regaining pain perception and ambulatory function. In dogs which fail to regain pain perception and ambulatory function after surgery, fecal and urinary incontinence will persist and frequent urinary tract infections are common. In addition, in some dogs this dysfunction can progress to the level of ascending urinary tract infection and sepsis.    New therapies are needed to improve these outcome.

    We propose to transplant allogeneic Wharton’s Jelly (umbilical cord matrix) mesenchymal stem cells (WJ-MSC) into the spinal cord of dogs admitted to the Foster Hospital at Cummings Veterinary Medical Center at Tufts University because of severe spinal cord injury secondary to intervertebral disc herniation/compression in order to study their potential as neuroprotective and regenerative agents.

    Our hypothesis is that chondrodystrophic dogs with an acute onset of paraplegia and loss of pain perception caudal to a thoracolumbar disk extrusion treated with decompressive surgery and subdural allogeneic WJ-MSC will have a significantly higher likelihood of a functional recovery than dogs treated with decompressive surgery alone.

    In this prospective study, paraplegic dogs with absent pain perception will be randomly assigned to WJ-MSC (in Cryostor) plus surgery or vehicle (Cryostor) plus surgery. Parameters of interest include time to return of pain perception, motor function, ambulation and urinary/fecal continence. A successful outcome will be defined as return to ambulatory function, normal pain perception caudal to the lesion and full urinary and fecal continence within 3 months post-surgery.

    A positive functional outcome as a result of stem cell transplantation would be a tremendous benefit and step forward for dogs being affected with concussive disk herniations. Determining such efficacy, along with an assessment of any related complications, would provide an ideal naturally occurring disease model in dogs could also be utilized in human therapeutics of spinal cord injury.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Dogs of any age, sex weighing less than 25 kg with the following:

    ° Complete medical history

    ° Owner consent for inclusion into study

    ° Paraplegia with absent pain perception in hind legs and tail at admission

    ° Extradural compression between T3 – L3 diagnosed with CT or MRI

    ° Acute disk extrusion confirmed at surgery

    ° Follow up performed at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University by neurology service

    Exclusion criteria:

    ° Unable to confirm disk extrusion intraoperatively

    ° Concurrent disease that could interfere with neurologic recovery

    ° Inability to obtain in-hospital follow-up performed at Tufts University by the neurology service

    ° No owner consent

    Client benefits:

    The study will cover all of the costs of stem cells treatment and follow-up appointments up to 3 months after the surgery, as well as contribute $1100 towards the cost of surgery. Your pet’s participation will also allow us to gain information which will help in the diagnosis/management/treatment of other dogs with this condition. You understand that your animal’s participation in this study may not alleviate or cure his/her ailment.

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

  • Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    This clinical trial led by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and sponsored by the Morris Animal Foundation seeks to evaluate in dogs with osteosarcoma the safety and effectiveness of Standard of Care therapy, with or without adjuvant rapamycin administration. Standard of Care is defined as definitive surgery, being amputation of the affected limb, followed by 4 doses of intravenous carboplatin chemotherapy given on a q21 day schedule. Carboplatin has been safely and effectively used to treat appendicular osteosarcoma in dogs for > 20 years, but the potential for unforeseen potentially life-threatening side effects from surgery, chemotherapy, and/or progressive cancer does exist. ALL dogs enrolled onto study will receive Standard of Care therapy; however, through a randomization process, some dogs entered into study will also receive additional therapy with oral rapamycin.

    Rapamycin is a drug currently approved for immunosuppression during preparatory and maintenance regimens for organ and bone marrow transplant in human patients. Early work with rapamycin suggests that this agent might also have anti-cancer properties by inhibiting (reducing the effects of) an important pathway in cancer progression known as mTOR. Preclinical studies of rapamycin in mice, as well as recent data using analogous drugs in human patients (rapalogs), suggest that mTOR blockade might be effective in the treatment of several cancers. In a recently completed study of rapamycin in dogs with cancer, a dose and schedule for rapamycin administration have been defined which appears to be safe and tolerable by most dogs.

    Within this study, dogs will undergo surgical amputation of the affected limb. Dogs will return to Cummings Veterinary Medical Center every 3 weeks for 15 weeks for evaluation. On weeks 3, 6, 9 and 12, dogs will receive treatment carboplatin chemotherapy. After 15 weeks of Standard of Care, based upon initial study randomization, dogs will either receive oral rapamycin on a 4 day on/3 day off schedule for 4 months or will not be treated with any additional medications and simply be monitored every 8 weeks.

    Eligibility Criteria:          

    1. Histologically or cytologically (inclusive of alkaline phosphatase positivity) confirmed osteosarcoma
    2. Measurable disease that is amenable to surgical removal via amputation (No evidence of metastasis based upon physical exam, chest x-rays, and abdominal ultrasound).
    3. Favorable performance status: Grade 0 or 1 (modified ECOG [Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group] criteria) - Briefly, Grade 0 means that the animal’s activity level is completely normal; Grade 1 allows for mild lethargy but the animal is still able to perform all “activities of daily living.”
    4. ONLY newly diagnosed dogs are eligible with no prior therapy (conventional or metronomic chemotherapy, ionizing radiation, bisphosphonates) for osteosarcoma
    5. Dogs receiving analgesics including NSAIDs, gabapentin, tramadol, or other will be eligible for study inclusion
    6. Informed owner consent for trial (approved by CSRC/IACUC) - Client’s informed consent includes permission for dogs to undergo full post-mortem examination (necropsy) if the dog dies while on study

    Exclusion Criteria:

    1. Weight < 25 kg (55 pounds)
    2. Dogs without measurable disease (appendicular osteosarcoma) at presentation to Tufts
    3. ANY prior therapy for osteosarcoma (conventional or metronomic chemotherapy, ionizing radiation, bisphosphonates)
    4. Concurrent medications deemed incongruent with this study; to be determined by NCI COTC investigators.
    5. Significant co-morbid illness, which includes but is not limited to renal or hepatic failure, history of congestive heart failure or clinical coagulopathy
    6. Creatinine > 3.0 mg/dL
    7. Bilirubin > 2.0 mg/dL or elevated bile acids
    8. HCT < 25%, platelets < 150,000 cells/ul
    9. Any hematologic/biochemical abnormality > grade 1 ( According to the Veterinary Cooperative Oncology Group – Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events [VCOG-CTCAE] v1.1 – which appears in Appendix II in the COTC protocol)

    Client Benefits 

    Costs associated with this study (including carboplatin and rapamycin administration and study-related evaluations will be covered by the study. In addition, $1,000 will be provided towards the cost of surgical amputation

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial, please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

  • Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description

    Bisphosphonates, such as pamidronate and more recently zoledronate, are commonly used for palliation of pain related to malignant osteolysis. Acute systemic inflammatory responses, cardiac arrhythmias, ocular toxicity and significant elevations in pro-inflammatory cytokines have been observed in association with bisphosphonate therapy in humans, although the frequency is uncertain. The primary objective of this study is to investigate if there is an increase in biomarkers of inflammation and myocardial injury after zoledronate administration in dogs with malignant osteolysis. A secondary objective is to assess body temperature and to determine if there is an association between zoledronic acid-induced rise in temperature and elevation in inflammatory biomarkers.

    Inclusion Criteria

    • All dogs must be at least one year old on Day 0.
    • All dogs must weigh at least 5kg on Day 0.
    • All dogs must have complete baseline cancer staging involving physical exam, chemistry profile and urinalysis prior to enrollment.
    • Dogs must have adequate organ function as indicated by standard laboratory tests: hematology (CBC), clinical chemistry and urinalysis.
    • All dogs must have either radiographic or advanced imaging to confirm the presence of a lytic bone lesion.
    • All dogs must be intended to receive intravenous zoledronate to alleviate associated bone pain as part of their therapeutic plan.

     Exclusion Criteria

    • Dogs that had received prior bisphosphonate (pamidronate or zoledronate) administration.
    • Evidence of severe kidney dysfunction.
    • Dogs that are receiving corticosteroids for at least 7 days prior to enrollment.

    Client Benefits

    The study will cover the costs associated with one administration of one dose of zoledronate, three CBCs, and the costs of blood tests involved in the study. This amounts to a total financial benefit of approximately $550.  The client will be responsible for all other costs associated with the cancer staging (initial consult, chemistry profile, urinalysis, and radiographic or other advanced imaging evidence of a lytic bone lesion) as well as any additional treatments with zoledronate or other cancer therapy during and after completion of the study. Each patient’s participation will allow us to gain information which will help in the side effect management of future dogs undergoing treatment with zoledronate.

    Have a case?  

    Contact Drs. Michele Keyerleber or Molly Holmes at (508) 887-4682, Michele.Keyerleber@tufts.edu or Molly.Holmes@tufts.edu            

  • Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    The purpose of the study is to investigate ways to monitor dogs that have been diagnosed with chronic inflammation in their liver so called chronic hepatitis in dogs. We are performing this study to evaluate whether these blood tests correlate with the severity of the dog’s liver disease.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    • Dogs weighing greater than 6 kg (13 lbs)
    • Dogs with histologically confirmed chronic hepatitis

    Exclusion Criteria:

    • history of use of corticosteroids, ursodeoxycholate, NSAIDs, omega-3 or vitamin D supplementation within 2 weeks of enrollment or the use of DDAVP within 24 hours
    • degenerative mitral valve disease, renal disease (Creat >2.0 mg/dL), concurrent active infection, neoplasia, IBD, immune mediated hemolytic anema, pnacreatitis or immune mediated polyarthropathy

    Client Benefits:

    The study will cover the costs of the vitamin D, CRP and von Willebrand factors as well as a complete blood count and serum chemistry at the first recheck appointment.

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

     

  • CSRC protocol #: G2016.33

    Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    To determine if telmisartan, a medication used to reduce protein loss through the kidneys, is broken down and processed differently in dogs with kidney disease compared to healthy dogs.

    To compare the ability of telmisartan to control protein loss through the kidneys in dogs with protein-losing kidney disease (protein-losing nephropathy, or PLN) with benazepril, one of the medications in the class of medications (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors) that is currently standard therapy for this disease.

    We hypothesize that the processing of telmisartan in dogs with PLN will be altered compared to the patterns previously established in healthy dogs, and that telmisartan will be equally or more effective than benazepril at treating PLN.

    This study serves to evaluate telmisartan, a medication commonly used in human medicine, for its role in helping to treat protein-losing nephropathy, a potentially devastating disease in dogs.  If successful, this may open a new option for treatment of dogs with PLN who don’t respond to standard therapies, such as benazepril.  In addition, the pharmacokinetics of telmisartan (or any angiotensin-receptor blocker) in dogs with PLN has not been previously evaluated.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Dogs who have been diagnosed with protein-losing nephropathy (as defined by having a urine protein:creatinine ratio >2.0 with no evidence of non-renal causes of proteinuria).

    Client benefits:

    The direct benefit from this study for your dog is that he or she will receive one of two promising therapies for protein-losing kidney disease with close monitoring of his or her response to therapy.  The direct benefit to you is that the costs of either medication (benazepril or losartan) will be covered for the duration of the study (6 months).  You will be responsible for the costs of the preliminary diagnostic tests (including ultrasound) and the costs of the recheck appointments and urine and blood testing at these rechecks.

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

  • Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    Portal vein thrombosis during the early postoperative period is a significant cause of death in dogs undergoing splenectomy for splenic mass lesions. Thrombocytosis following splenectomy is common in humans, and the resultant hypercoagulability is a known risk factor for portal vein thrombosis. It is not known whether post-splenectomy thrombocytosis or hypercoagulability develop in dogs. We hypothesize that some dogs undergoing splenectomy for splenic masses develop increases in platelet count and become hypercoagulable during the first 2 weeks after splenectomy. We also hypothesize that postoperative platelet counts will be higher among dogs that present with hemoabdomen than among dogs that do not, because intra-abdominal hemorrhage from a splenic mass may result in a temporary consumptive thrombocytopenia and rebound thrombocytosis

    Inclusion criteria:

    Dogs undergoing splenectomy

    Client benefits:

    The study will cover the costs associated with all blood tests evaluated in the study. These tests may or may not be beneficial in the management of your dog’s condition. Your dog’s doctor may determine that additional blood tests are necessary for diagnosis and treatment; the cost of these diagnostics will not be covered by the study. Your pet’s participation will also allow us to gain information which will help in the management/treatment of other dogs undergoing splenectomies in the future.

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

     

  • Status:   Currently enrolling

    Description:

    Canine degenerative myelopathy (DM) is an inherited, progressive spinal cord disease, generally noticed after the age of 8 years.  Clinical signs are initially very mild and refer to a thoracolumbar spinal cord disease. Over time the clinical signs progress to lower motor neuron signs in the pelvic limbs, paraplegia, and later loss of motor function including in front legs with brainstem signs in the end stage.  Breed and also owner decision are important factors for survival since many dogs are euthanized when they can no longer walk.   The suspected diagnosis of degenerative myelopathy is established by exclusion of disorders causing similar signs such as chronic disk disease, spinal tumors , degenerative lumbosacral stenosis, hip dysplasia, chronic cruciate ligament disease or neuromuscular disorders.   Effective treatment options are not available.

    Many cases of canine degenerative myelopathy are caused by mutations in the gene encoding superoxide dismutase (SOD1). The purpose of the study is to determine whether a suppression of the activity of the mutant SOD1 gene can stop the progression of the clinical signs. In this study, the gene suppressing compound, is delivered to the spinal cord and brain using a small vector (known as adeno-associated vector or AAVrh10).

    Inclusion Criteria:

    1. Species: canine
    2. Sex: male, castrated male, female , spayed female
    3. Age Range: > 8 years
    4. Weight Range: > 20 kg
    5. Other:
    • History of chronic progressive hind end weakness
    • Ambulatory condition, neurological signs referring to a T3 - L3 localization
    • Only dogs without structural spinal cord lesions such as compressive intervertebral disk disease, spinal tumors, infectious or non-infectious meningomyelitis, malformations and degenerative lumbosacral stenosis will be included.
    • The parameters should be within normal limits for CBC, chemistry profile, chest radiographs and MRI T3 - S1.
    • Only dogs without structural spinal cord disease and a homozygous SOD1 mutation will be enrolled into this study.
    • Signed consent form by owner including that dogs after adeno-associated vector treatment will undergo an autopsy with cremation of the body.

    Exclusion Criteria:

    1.  Dogs with structural spinal cord disease such as such as compressive intervertebral disk disease, spinal tumors, infectious or non-infectious meningomyelitis, malformations and degenerative lumbosacral stenosis will be excluded
    2. Dogs with active hepatitis will be excluded
    3. Dogs who are not homozygous for the SOD1 mutation will be excluded
    4.  We will exclude dogs for whom the owner does not sign a consent form.

    Client Benefits:

    The study will cover all the expenses related to the study and follow-up . This includes additional anesthesia procedures, additional MRI exam to inject the gene suppression compound, CSF analysis, vector treatment, recheck exams, force plate analysis, whole body EMG, motor test conduction of nerves, bloodwork, autopsy and cremation. The initial expenses such as initial neurological examination and intial MRI and anesthesia will not be covered by the study funds. Your pet's participation will also allow us to gain information which will help in the diagnosis and management and treatment of other dogs diagnosed with degenerative myelopathy, a disorder which is currently not treatable. You understand that your animal's participation in this study may not alleviate or cure his/her ailment.

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at: clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

  • Status: Currently enrolling

    Description:

    The goal of this study is to measure the presence of a blood marker, miRNA, in dogs with naturally occurring bone cancer (osteosarcoma) and compare these results to healthy unaffected dogs. We hypothesize that the presence of this biomarker will positively correlate with the presence of tumor and high expression levels may be associated with outcomes of disease-free interval and survival time in dogs with osteosarcoma.  Approximately 10 mls (2 teaspoons) of blood will be collected from your dog’s vein via routine blood sampling. Blood collection ideally will occur both prior to and following removal of your dog’s tumor. This is a safe amount of blood that can be sampled in any dog greater than 5 kilograms.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Dogs with osteosarcoma weighing 5 kilograms (11 pounds) or greater

    Client Benefits:

    Your pet’s participation will allow us to gain information, which will help in the diagnosis/management/treatment of other dogs with this condition. You understand that your animal’s participation in this study may not alleviate or cure his/her ailment.

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

  • Sponsor: Private foundation

    IACUC Protocol # G2016-125

    Status: Currently enrolling

    Description:

    This study has two components;

    1. To examine blood from dogs with skin diseases (including atopic dermatitis, pemphigus foliaceus and perianal fistulas) compared with blood from healthy dogs to identify factors (‘biomarkers’) that may play a role in the disease process.
    2. To develop a blood test for the skin disease (pemphigus foliaceus, or ‘PF’).

    It is hoped this study will enable us to gain a deeper understanding of disease processes with the long term goal of finding alternate approaches to diagnose, monitor, prevent or treat these chronic skin diseases.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Blood samples from dogs presenting to the Tufts dermatology service with skin diseases (atopic dermatitis, pemphigus foliaceus and perianal fistulas) and healthy control dogs are required for this study as we are investigating features of naturally occurring skin diseases in the general canine population and comparing this to blood from healthy dogs to identify factors that contribute to the diseased state

    Exclusion Criteria:

    Dogs weighing less than 5kg, dogs less than a year old or greater than 14 years old, pregnant dogs.

    Dogs will be excluded from the healthy control group if they have evidence of skin disease on physical examination or from their history, or if they have evidence of systemic disease (other than age appropriate changes) on their history, physical examination or bloodwork.

    Client Benefits:

    There are no additional costs to you for taking the blood sample. The study will cover the cost of a complete blood count/serum biochemistry health screen panel run on your dog’s blood on the first sample only, and these results will be provided to you.

    Costs for any diagnostics or treatment recommended by your veterinarian resulting from abnormal findings on the blood test or relating to their skin disease are not provided by this study.

    Your animal’s participation in this study does not influence ongoing management or treatment of any medical condition by your veterinarian, and will not change any treatment or outcome for his/her skin disease.

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

  • CSRC Protocol # 110-16

    Status: Currently enrolling

    Description:

    Our overall goal is to measure the incidence of vomiting, gastroesophageal reflux (GER) and regurgitation in dogs after pre-anesthetic administration of acepromazine and dexmedetomdine . These complications can potentially result in severe esophageal damage and aspiration of stomach contents causing pneumonia .

    This study will allow us to identify the most efficient drug regime that reduces the incidence of GER and regurgitation during anesthesia in particular in those patients more predisposed to gastrointestinal complications. The study will also allow us to institute early treatment with antiemetics and gastrointestinal protectants once GER is detected. It is also our aim to raise awareness in regards to these potential complications.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Healthy dogs that are scheduled to undergo an elective soft tissue or orthopedic procedure that are:

    • 6 months to 8 years of age
    • Male or female
    • weighing 5 kg (11 lb) to 35 kg (77 lb)

    Exclusion Criteria:

    • Dogs will be excluded from this study if they have vomited or regurgitated within a week of the scheduled elective soft tissue or orthopedic procedure .
    • Dogs will also be excluded if the randomized treatment does not provide enough sedation to place an intravenous catheter in a safe and ethical manner.

    Client Benefits:

    Participation in the study will allow us to identify peri-operative regurgitation and reflux earlier than if your pet was not included in this study. If there is evidence of regurgitation during the procedure, your animal will be promptly treated (suction and/or esophageal wash). This study will also provide data of the occurrence of perioperative reflux which would not be otherwise identified. The information will be considered in the postoperative management of your pet. Your pet's participation will also  allow us to gain information which will help in the management of other dogs in the future that undergo general anesthesia

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at: clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

     

     

  • Sponsor: Private Foundation

    IACUC Protocol # G2016-134

    Status:  Enrollment currently on hold

    Description:

    Dogs develop inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) spontaneously, which results in persistent or recurring signs such as weight loss, vomiting, and/or diarrhea, and is characterized by inflammatory cell infiltration in the intestine.

    In both humans and dogs, IBD is considered to be an idiopathic, chronic, relapsing immune-mediated inflammatory disorder of the GI tract that involves the interplay between genes, diet, and the microbes in the intestine. The treatment for IBD in both dogs and humans is similar, and relies on diet, immune suppression.

    The goals of this experiment are: 1) to evaluate the gene expression of the white blood cells in the intestine and the blood of dogs with inflammatory bowel disease compared to normal dogs, and 2) to evaluate the in vitro response to activation of the T cells in the blood and intestine of dogs with IBD and normal dogs, and 3) to determine in vitro if extracellular vesicles (EV) derived from canine mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) or the MSC themselves are able to reduce the inflammation seen in dogs with IBD.

    MSC are cells derived from the tissue around the umbilical cord, which are known to have anti-inflammatory and regenerative properties. EV are nanoparticles released from the MSC, which contain many signaling molecules that are also potentially capable of anti-inflammatory properties.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    IBD group:

    Dogs over 1 year of age and weighing > 5 kg undergoing upper gastrointestinal endoscopy for evaluation of a history of chronic gastrointestinal signs of at least 3 weeks duration (vomiting, diarrhea, and/or weight loss) will be considered. These dogs will have no identifiable cause for their clinical signs on routine diagnostic evaluation (complete blood count, serum chemistry, urinalysis, baseline cortisol). Dogs will need to have had a veterinarian-recommended diet trial for at least 1 week with incomplete resolution of signs, as well as be incompletely responsive to an antibiotic trial with metronidazole or tylosin. Eligible dogs will have had a negative fecal floatation and Giardia ELISA or negative zinc sulfate floatation, or be non-responsive to a treatment course with fenbendazole (50 mg/kg daily for 3 days).

    Control dogs for blood and GI tissue acquisition will include otherwise healthy dogs undergoing endoscopy for foreign body retrieval and weighing > 5 kg. Dogs will have no evidence of systemic disease (change in weight, thirst, urination, activity level), and no history of gastrointestinal signs unrelated to recent foreign body ingestion.

    Exclusion Criteria:

    Dogs with cancer detected on physical examination or diagnostics performed will be excluded. Dogs cannot be on topical or oral short acting steroid therapy (prednisone or prednisolone), other oral immunosuppressants (i.e., azathioprine, cyclosporine), or oral non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (i.e., Rimadyl, Deramaxx) medication for at least 1 week prior to biopsy. Antibiotic therapy will not exclude a patient from enrollment.

    Client Benefits:

    Fees associated with histopathology (microscopic evaluation of the intestinal tissue) performed during the study will be covered during your participation in the study. Costs incurred by additional anesthesia time over that needed for diagnostic biopsy collection or foreign body removal will be covered by the study.

    In the event any complications arise during endoscopy, their management will be covered by you.

    Contact Information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at: clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

  • IACUC & CSRC # G2016.169

    Status: Currently enrolling

    Description:

    The goal of this project is to measure the development of antibiotic resistance in pet dogs treated with antibiotics and their owners. We will measure the number of resistant organisms in the stool of dogs and their owners both before treatment and after the dog receives two weeks of antibiotics.  This project will begin investigating the relationship between small animal antibiotic use and the development of antibiotic resistance in both the dogs and humans in close contact with their pets. Since antibiotic resistance is becoming a global threat to both human and animal health, such studies investigating the interrelationship of resistance development and potential hazards of veterinary antibiotic use are essential.

    We hypothesize that antibiotic treatment will result in the measurable development of resistance in both dogs and owners in close contact with their pets.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Dogs receiving a 14-day course of either Clavamox or Baytril for any reason are eligible for participation in the study. The owners must also enroll in a concurrent trial with IRB approval to collect stool samples from themselves.

    Exclusion Criteria:

    No additional antimicrobials or other medications can be administered to your dog along with the course of antimicrobials. This includes antacids, probiotics, and anti-inflammatory medications.

    In addition, neither you or anyone in your household (human or animal) can have received antibiotics within the 2 months prior to study enrollment.

    Client Benefits:

    There are no costs associated with sample collection for this study. In the event any complications arise during the study period, their management will be covered by you, the owner. Antibiotics are being recommended for treatment of your pet independent of this study being performed, and adverse events are uncommon.

    In return for participation in this study, you will be given a $200 Visa® gift card once all samples have been collected for both your dog and yourself.  Both samples for your pet and yourself must be returned to the Foster Hospital for Small Animals to receive the gift card.

    Your participation will allow us to gain important information about the risk for developing antibiotic resistance in dogs and in people in close contact with dogs. You understand that your animal’s participation in this study may not alleviate or cure his/her ailment.

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at: clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

  • CSRC protocol # 003.17

    Status:  Currently enrolling

    Description:

    Gallbladder mucoceles (GBM) are a common and significant cause of biliary disease in dogs.  We hypothesize that dogs with GBM will have coagulation parameters compatible with a hypercoagulable state. We hope to determine if there is a correlation between these coagulation parameters and known risk factors for mortality in dogs undergoing cholecystectomy for GBM, clinical course and ultrasonographic findings associated with gallbladder rupture.

    Inclusion criteria:

    • Ultrasonographically diagnosed gallbladder mucocele (GBM).
    • Dogs must have had a complete blood count, chemistry and urinalysis within 24 hours of the ultrasound diagnosis
    • Body weight greater than 5 kg

    Exclusion criteria:

    • Administration of vitamin K, blood productions or any other medications known to affect coagulation (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, corticosteroids, heparin, clopidogrel, free fatty acids or hydroxylethyl starch) within 2 weeks of the sample collection
    • Greyhounds will be excluded

    Client Benefits:

    The study will cover the costs of coagulation testing (prothrombin time, partial thromboplastin time, factor VIII activity, fibrinogen, Ddimer, thromboelastrography, protein C activ ity, antithrombin activity and von willebrand factor activity). We will share the results of the thromboelastography with you. The other coagulation tests will not be performed immediately. Your pet's participation will also allow us to gain information regarding the coagulation status in dogs with gallbladder mucoceles which may help in the management of other dogs with this condition. You understand that your animal's participation in this study may not alleviate or cure his/her ailment.

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu

     

     

     

  • IACUC Protocol # G2016-161

    Status: Currently enrolling

    Description:

    To develop tests to measure lymphocyte function in healthy animals, which will then be able to be used to monitor disease in sick dogs and rabbits. Lymphocytes are a type of white blood cells that function as part of the immune system. Normally, they respond properly to foreign invaders in the body. When the lymphocytes do not act properly diseases may occur.

    Once adequately developed and validated, the proposed tests will allow us to evaluate immune function in dogs and rabbits with diseases affecting their immune systems. The various applications of these tests include evaluating rabbits with Encephalitozoon cuniculi, an infection also affecting humans, and measuring the effects of immune suppressing drugs taken by both dogs and humans.  To be able to measure immune responses in sick patients, we must first develop the tests in blood from healthy animals.

    Inclusion Criteria:

    Healthy dogs weighing more than 5 kg and between the ages of 1 and 12

    Healthy rabbits weighing more than 1 kg and between the ages of 1 and 6

    Exclusion criteria:

    Dogs: weighing < 5 kg

    < 1 year old or > 12 years old

    Pregnant

    Rabbits: weighing < 1 kg

    < 1 year old or > 6 years old

    Pregnant

    Contact information:

    For questions regarding the clinical trial please email the clinical trials technician, Diane Welsh at:  clinicaltrials@tufts.edu