2052: Defining the Mechanism of Severe, Life-Threatening Bleeding Disorders in Dogs

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $51,297
Dr. Dana N. LeVine, DVM, PhD, Iowa State University
February 1, 2014 - January 31, 2016
Sponsor(s): Friends of Norfolk Terrier, Orthopedic Foundation for Animals
Breed(s): Cocker Spaniel, Old English Sheepdog
Research Program Area: Immunology and Infectious Disease

Abstract

Immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) is a common bleeding disorder in dogs. It occurs when the immune system destroys the body's own platelets - blood cells that prevent hemorrhage. The resulting lack of platelets in some dogs causes mild bruising and in others causes severe, life-threatening hemorrhage. Veterinarians do not understand what triggers ITP and cannot predict its severity. Consequently, all ITP patients are treated with potent medications that suppress the entire immune system. Many dogs experience treatment side-effects including excessive thirst and urination, ulcers, weight gain, and recurrent infections. For some dogs, the side-effects, rather than ITP, prove fatal. Dr. LeVine will investigate the specific causes of ITP by measuring immune cells and proteins that are likely involved in platelet destruction. Further, her laboratory will identify protein-based biological markers that predict bleeding severity. Finally, they will define genes associated with the disease in breeds especially prone to ITP. Together, these efforts will benefit ITP patients through individualized therapy that matches treatment intensity with disease severity. Discovery of the immune and genetic causes of ITP will not only improve disease treatment, but ultimately help to prevent it.

Publication(s)

None at this time.

Help Future Generations of Dogs

Participate in canine health research by providing samples or by enrolling in a clinical trial. Samples are needed from healthy dogs and dogs affected by specific diseases.

Learn How to Help

Make an Investment Today:

  • $50
  • $100
  • $250
  • $1000
  • Give Now
Connect With Us:
Get Canine Health News:
Please leave this field empty

© 2016 AKC Canine Health Foundation | Privacy Policy | Site Map

Site by Blackbaud, Inc.

Powered by Blackbaud
nonprofit software