01844: Treatment of Urinary Incontinence with Multipotent Muscle Cells: A Regenerative Medicine Approach to a Common Canine Health Problem

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $116,184
Shelly Vaden, DVM, PhD; North Carolina State University
January 1, 2013 - December 31, 2019

Sponsor(s): Chihuahua Club of America, Collie Health Foundation, Irish Setter Club of America Foundation, Newfoundland Club of America Charitable Trust

Breed(s): Irish Setter, Golden Retriever, Doberman Pinscher, English Springer Spaniel, Old English Sheepdog, Giant Schnauzer, Weimaraner, Rottweiler
Research Program Area: Kidney & Urological Disease
Donate to Support this Research Program Area


Urinary incontinence affects more than 20% of spayed female dogs, with medium and large breeds more commonly affected. In the majority of the cases urinary incontinence is caused by dysfunction of the muscles controlling the urethral sphincter. This results in uncontrolled loss of urine and can lead to serious bladder and kidney infections, in addition to irritation and/or ulceration of the skin in contact with the urine. Treatment can include hormone therapy, drugs designed to strengthen the muscle tone of the urethral sphincter, collagen injections, or surgery. Recently, Dr. Vaden's lab has reported that injection of muscle progenitor cells into damaged urethral sphincters can restore normal function in dogs. The purpose of this project is to extend those observations and examine the usefulness of cultured muscle cells for the restoration of function of the urethral sphincter in dogs with naturally occurring urinary incontinence. The effects of the procedure will be determined by owner reported continence scoring, as well as urodynamic testing that will provide an objective measurement for how well the bladder, sphincters, and urethra are storing and releasing urine.


Vaden, S. L., Mathews, K. G., Yoo, J., Williams, J. K., Harris, T., Secoura, P., Robertson, J., Gleason, K. L., Reynolds, H., & Piedrahita, J. (2022). The use of autologous skeletal muscle progenitor cells for adjunctive treatment of presumptive urethral sphincter mechanism incompetence in female dogs. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicinehttps://doi.org/10.1111/jvim.16505

Vaden, S. L., & Elliott, J. (2016). Management of Proteinuria in Dogs and Cats with Chronic Kidney Disease. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract, 46(6), 1115-1130. doi:10.1016/j.cvsm.2016.06.009

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

Get Canine Health News:
Please leave this field empty
American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation, Inc

8051 Arco Corporate Dr.
Suite 300
Raleigh, NC 27617

Tax ID# 13-3813813


© 2021 AKC Canine Health Foundation | Privacy Policy | Site Map

Site by Blackbaud, Inc.