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
Regardless of what business you’re in, it’s increasingly a software-driven business. Consumers’ rising expectations for connected digital and physical experiences are driving what some are calling the "Customer Experience Challenge.” In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Marco Morales, Director of Global Solutions at CollabNet, will discuss how organizations are increasingly adopting a discipline of Value Stream Mapping to ensure that the software they are producing is poised to ...
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
IBM helps FinTechs and financial services companies build and monetize cognitive-enabled financial services apps quickly and at scale. Hosted on IBM Bluemix, IBM’s platform builds in customer insights, regulatory compliance analytics and security to help reduce development time and testing. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Tom Eck, Industry Platforms CTO at IBM Cloud, will discuss how these tools simplify the time-consuming tasks of selection, mapping and data integration, allowing developer...
For financial firms, the cloud is going to increasingly become a crucial part of dealing with customers over the next five years and beyond, particularly with the growing use and acceptance of virtual currencies. There are new data storage paradigms on the horizon that will deliver secure solutions for storing and moving sensitive financial data around the world without touching terrestrial networks. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Cliff Beek, President of Cloud Constellation Corporation, ...
In order to meet the rapidly changing demands of today’s customers, companies are continually forced to redefine their business strategies in order to meet these needs, stay relevant and continue to see profitable growth. IoT deployment and development is integral in this transformation, and today businesses are increasingly seeing the value of investing their resources into IoT deployments. These technologies are able increase ROI through projects such as connecting supply chains or enabling sm...
Interested in leveling up on your Cloud Foundry skills? Join IBM for Cloud Foundry Days on June 7 at Cloud Expo New York at the Javits Center in New York City. Cloud Foundry Days is a free half day educational conference and networking event. Come find out why Cloud Foundry is the industry's fastest-growing and most adopted cloud application platform.
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
Five years ago development was seen as a dead-end career, now it’s anything but – with an explosion in mobile and IoT initiatives increasing the demand for skilled engineers. But apart from having a ready supply of great coders, what constitutes true ‘DevOps Royalty’? It’ll be the ability to craft resilient architectures, supportability, security everywhere across the software lifecycle. In his keynote at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Jeffrey Scheaffer, GM and SVP, Continuous Delivery Busine...
SYS-CON Events announced today that delaPlex will exhibit at SYS-CON's @CloudExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. delaPlex pioneered Software Development as a Service (SDaaS), which provides scalable resources to build, test, and deploy software. It’s a fast and more reliable way to develop a new product or expand your in-house team.
SYS-CON Events announced today that delaPlex will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. delaPlex pioneered Software Development as a Service (SDaaS), which provides scalable resources to build, test, and deploy software. It’s a fast and more reliable way to develop a new product or expand your in-house team.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Carbonite will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Carbonite protects your entire IT footprint with the right level of protection for each workload, ensuring lower costs and dependable solutions with DoubleTake and Evault.
SYS-CON Events announced today that EARP Integration will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. EARP Integration is a passionate software house. Since its inception in 2009 the company successfully delivers smart solutions for cities and factories that start their digital transformation. EARP provides bespoke solutions like, for example, advanced enterprise portals, business intelligence systems an...
Amazon started as an online bookseller 20 years ago. Since then, it has evolved into a technology juggernaut that has disrupted multiple markets and industries and touches many aspects of our lives. It is a relentless technology and business model innovator driving disruption throughout numerous ecosystems. Amazon’s AWS revenues alone are approaching $16B a year making it one of the largest IT companies in the world. With dominant offerings in Cloud, IoT, eCommerce, Big Data, AI, Digital Assis...
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Brad Winett, Senior Technologist for DDN Storage, will present several current, end-user environments that are using object storage at scale for cloud deployments including private cloud and cloud providers. Details on the top considerations of features and functions for selecting object storage will be included. Brad will also touch on recent developments in tiering technologies that deliver single solution and an end-user view of data across files and objects...
Detecting internal user threats in the Big Data eco-system is challenging and cumbersome. Many organizations monitor internal usage of the Big Data eco-system using a set of alerts. This is not a scalable process given the increase in the number of alerts with the accelerating growth in data volume and user base. Organizations are increasingly leveraging machine learning to monitor only those data elements that are sensitive and critical, autonomously establish monitoring policies, and to detect...