Welcome!

News Feed Item

Oklahoma State University study reveals better method to test cats for heartworm infections

- The OSU study, supported by Bayer and published in Parasites & Vectors[1], demonstrates heat treatment of feline serum samples prior to testing dramatically improved sensitivity of antigen tests for heartworm infection in cats.

STILLWATER, Okla. and SHAWNEE, Kan., Jan. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- New data were published today in Parasites & Vectors from a study conducted at Oklahoma State University (OSU) that identified a method of improving the sensitivity of antigen tests for heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis) infection in cats. The study, funded by Bayer HealthCare LLC Animal Health division, makers of parasiticides, found that heat treatment of feline serum samples prior to testing can considerably improve the sensitivity of antigen assays in feline patients and, in turn, result in a more accurate diagnosis of heartworm infection in cats.

"Heartworm is a very serious disease in cats that can result in significant pulmonary damage and can be fatal," said lead study investigator, Susan E. Little, DVM, Ph.D., Regents professor and Krull-Ewing chair in veterinary parasitology, OSU Center for Veterinary Health Sciences. "We believe this study's findings will enhance detection of heartworm infection in cats, improving both patient care and veterinarians' understanding of the true extent of feline heartworm."

Antigen detection a challenge in cats 

According to the study's authors – which included Byron Blagburn, MS, Ph.D., distinguished university professor, Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine – the diagnosis of heartworm in cats has been complicated in the past by the difficulty associated with reliable detection of the heartworm antigen in feline samples. In fact, heartworm antigen tests have been considered much less reliable in cats than dogs. The lack of antigen detection has been attributed to low circulating antigenemia (presence of antigens in the blood) resulting from the low number of worms often seen in feline infections. Other feline heartworm assays based on antibody detection can be difficult to interpret since they do not distinguish between past or current infections.

Aiming to determine if antigen-antibody complex formation – antigen blocking – interfered with detection of the heartworm antigen in cats using commercial assays, the study evaluated serum samples from six domestic cats confirmed to be infected with a low number of heartworms. Four different commercially available assays were used before and after heat treatment of sera. The study found that the heartworm antigen was detected in zero to only one of six cats (0 to 16.7 percent), without heat treating the sera, using the assays according to manufacturers' directions. However, after heat treatment of the samples prior to testing, as many as five of six cats (83.3 percent) had detectable antigen – a "dramatic increase," the study's authors noted. Thus, new data suggests that adequate antigen is present in samples from cats infected with heartworm to allow diagnosis, but formation of antigen-antibody complexes may prevent its detection on commercial assays.

The authors concluded, "The data in the present study are exciting in that they suggest that once antigen-antibody complexes are disrupted, antigen tests may be of great value in confirming feline infection with D. immitis, particularly the sensitive microtiter well-based assays. Surveys conducted by antigen testing alone may be greatly underestimating the true prevalence of infection in cats."  

"When antigen based assays were first developed for detecting canine heartworm, the serum was pre-treated with heat or acid to destroy immune complexes prior to testing, as they were recognized as inhibiting detection of antigen in some canine samples," said Dr. Little. "This step is no longer included in protocols of antigen tests, including those labeled for use in cats. I think this study's findings could ultimately lead to a revision in the protocol for feline testing."

"Funding well-designed and carefully-executed research is a vital part of Bayer HealthCare's commitment to our mission, 'Science For a Better Life,'" said Joe Hostetler, DVM, veterinary technical services manager, Bayer HealthCare LLC Animal Health division and a study co-author. "Being part of this study was especially gratifying for me because, once the results were in, we realized the data had the potential to improve feline healthcare in an immediate and important way."

About Oklahoma State University

Oklahoma State University is a modern land-grant university. OSU's Center for Veterinary Health Sciences is the only veterinary college in Oklahoma. One of 30 veterinary colleges in the United States, it is fully accredited by the Council on Education of the American Veterinary Medical Association. The center's Boren Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital is open to the public and provides routine and specialized care for small and large animals. It also offers 24-hour emergency care and is certified by the American Animal Hospital Association. OSU is preparing students for a brighter future and building a brighter world for all. OSU improves the lives of people in Oklahoma, the nation, and the world through integrated, high quality teaching, research and outreach. For more information, visit www.cvhs.okstate.edu or call (405) 744-7000.

About Bayer HealthCare

The Bayer Group is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech materials. Bayer HealthCare, a subgroup of Bayer AG with annual sales of EUR 18.6 million (2012), is one of the world's leading, innovative companies in the healthcare and medical products industry and is based in Leverkusen, Germany. The company combines the global activities of the Animal Health, Consumer Care, Medical Care and Pharmaceuticals divisions. Bayer HealthCare's aim is to discover, develop, manufacture and market products that will improve human and animal health worldwide. Bayer HealthCare has a global workforce of 55,300 employees (Dec. 31, 2012) and is represented in more than 100 countries. More information at www.healthcare.bayer.com.

Contact:

Staci Gouveia, Tel. 203.809.9008
Email: [email protected] 

Derinda Blakeney, Tel. 405.744.6740
Email: [email protected]

Find more information about Bayer HealthCare Animal Health at
www.animalhealth.bayerhealthcare.com

Follow us on Twitter: @Bayer4animalsUS 
Follow us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/healthcare.bayer  

Forward-Looking Statements

This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group or subgroup management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in Bayer's public reports which are available on the Bayer website at www.bayer.com. The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

[1] Little SE, Raymond MR, Thomas JE, Gruntmeir J, Hostetler JA, Meinkoth JH, Blagburn BL: Heat treatment prior to testing allows detection of antigen of Dirofilaria immitis in feline serum. Parasites & Vectors (13 January 2014).

SOURCE Bayer HealthCare

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
In the enterprise today, connected IoT devices are everywhere – both inside and outside corporate environments. The need to identify, manage, control and secure a quickly growing web of connections and outside devices is making the already challenging task of security even more important, and onerous. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Rich Boyer, CISO and Chief Architect for Security at NTT i3, discussed new ways of thinking and the approaches needed to address the emerging challenges of security i...
"We're here to tell the world about our cloud-scale infrastructure that we have at Juniper combined with the world-class security that we put into the cloud," explained Lisa Guess, VP of Systems Engineering at Juniper Networks, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"I will be talking about ChatOps and ChatOps as a way to solve some problems in the DevOps space," explained Himanshu Chhetri, CTO of Addteq, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Mike Johnston, an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io, discussed how to use Kubernetes to set up a SaaS infrastructure for your business. Mike Johnston is an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io with over 12 years of experience designing, deploying, and maintaining server and workstation infrastructure at all scales. He has experience with brick and mortar data centers as well as cloud providers like Digital Ocean, Amazon Web Services, and Rackspace. H...
"We are an IT services solution provider and we sell software to support those solutions. Our focus and key areas are around security, enterprise monitoring, and continuous delivery optimization," noted John Balsavage, President of A&I Solutions, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
What sort of WebRTC based applications can we expect to see over the next year and beyond? One way to predict development trends is to see what sorts of applications startups are building. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Arin Sime, founder of WebRTC.ventures, discussed the current and likely future trends in WebRTC application development based on real requests for custom applications from real customers, as well as other public sources of information.
Your homes and cars can be automated and self-serviced. Why can't your storage? From simply asking questions to analyze and troubleshoot your infrastructure, to provisioning storage with snapshots, recovery and replication, your wildest sci-fi dream has come true. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, provided a ChatOps demo where you can talk to your storage and manage it from anywhere, through Slack and similar services with...
The financial services market is one of the most data-driven industries in the world, yet it’s bogged down by legacy CPU technologies that simply can’t keep up with the task of querying and visualizing billions of records. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Karthik Lalithraj, a Principal Solutions Architect at Kinetica, discussed how the advent of advanced in-database analytics on the GPU makes it possible to run sophisticated data science workloads on the same database that is housing the rich...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to w...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Massive Networks will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Massive Networks mission is simple. To help your business operate seamlessly with fast, reliable, and secure internet and network solutions. Improve your customer's experience with outstanding connections to your cloud.
"We want to show that our solution is far less expensive with a much better total cost of ownership so we announced several key features. One is called geo-distributed erasure coding, another is support for KVM and we introduced a new capability called Multi-Part," explained Tim Desai, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Hitachi Data Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
FinTechs use the cloud to operate at the speed and scale of digital financial activity, but are often hindered by the complexity of managing security and compliance in the cloud. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sesh Murthy, co-founder and CTO of Cloud Raxak, showed how proactive and automated cloud security enables FinTechs to leverage the cloud to achieve their business goals. Through business-driven cloud security, FinTechs can speed time-to-market, diminish risk and costs, maintain continu...
There is a huge demand for responsive, real-time mobile and web experiences, but current architectural patterns do not easily accommodate applications that respond to events in real time. Common solutions using message queues or HTTP long-polling quickly lead to resiliency, scalability and development velocity challenges. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ryland Degnan, a Senior Software Engineer on the Netflix Edge Platform team, will discuss how by leveraging a reactive stream-based protocol,...
DX World EXPO, LLC., a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devic...