Concurrent leukoencephalomyelitis and polyneuritis in a Maltese terrier: resembling combined central and peripheral demyelination in humans.
ABSTRACT: A one-year-old male Maltese terrier presented with mild ataxia and disorientation for 4 months. Over time, clinical signs progressed from paraparesis to non-ambulatory tetraparesis, voice change and dysphagia. Histological examination revealed concurrent leukoencephalomyelitis and polyneuritis. Infectious etiologies, including dengue, Japanese encephalitis, Zika, canine distemper, pseudorabies, rabies, toxoplasmosis, neosporosis, leishmaniasis, and encephalitozoonosis, were ruled out by PCR and/or immunohistochemical (IHC) staining. IHC tested on neurological tissues highlighted a heterogeneous population of infiltrating T and B lymphocytes admixed macrophages. Therefore, this case was diagnosed with current leukoencephalomyelitis and polyneuritis, resembling combined central and peripheral demyelination (CCPD), an autoimmune inflammatory demyelinating disease affecting both the CNS and PNS in humans.
Project description:Background:Episodic muscular hypertonicity in Norwich terrier dogs was first reported in a brief communication in 1984. Since then, the condition has remained poorly characterized. Objectives:The aims of this study were to characterize the phenomenology, clinical course, and family history of paroxysmal dyskinesia in the Norwich terrier and to estimate its prevalence in the United Kingdom. Methods:The owners of Norwich terrier dogs born since January 1, 2000 were invited to complete a specifically designed questionnaire aimed at identifying affected and unaffected dogs and investigating the clinical characteristics of this paroxysmal dyskinesia. Pedigrees were collected and reviewed. Results:The questionnaire was returned for 198 Norwich terrier dogs. Of these, 26 (13%) were classified as affected by paroxysmal dyskinesia after revision of the questionnaires and after obtaining videos of the episodes, veterinary medical records, and telephone interviews with the owners. All dogs were neurologically normal between episodes. No significant abnormalities were detected on diagnostic investigations. Mean age at the first episode was 3 years. The episodes were characterized by sustained muscular hypertonicity in the pelvic limbs, lumbar region, and thoracic limbs, impairing posture and locomotion without loss of consciousness. Episode frequency varied both between and within individuals. Stress, anxiety, excitement, and variation in daily routine were recognized as episode triggers in 13 dogs. Episode duration generally was from 2 to 5 minutes (range, from < 2 to 30 minutes). The majority of affected dogs were related. Conclusions:Paroxysmal dyskinesia segregates in an extended pedigree of Norwich terrier dogs and thus is potentially an inherited disorder in this breed.
Project description:Genome-wide association study (GWAS) is a powerful tool for identifying the genetic causes of various diseases. This study was conducted to identify genomic variation in Maltese dog genomes associated with degenerative mitral valve disease (DMVD) development and to evaluate the association of each biological condition with DMVD in Maltese dogs. DNA was extracted from blood samples obtained from 48 Maltese dogs (32 with DMVD and 16 controls). Genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotyping was performed. The top 30 SNPs from each association of various conditions and genetic variations were mapped to their gene locations. A total of 173,662 loci were successfully genotyped, with an overall genotype completion rate of 99.41%. Quality control analysis excluded 46,610 of these SNPs. Manhattan plots were produced using allelic tests with various candidate clinical conditions. A significant peak of association was observed between mitral valve prolapse (MVP) and SNPs on chromosome 17. The present study revealed significant SNPs in several genes associated with cardiac function, including <i>PDZ2</i>, Armadillo repeat protein detected in velo-cardio-facial syndrome, catenin (cadherin-associated protein) alpha 3, low-density lipoprotein receptor class A domain containing protein 4, and sterile alpha motif domain containing protein 3. To our knowledge, this is the first study of a genetic predisposition to DMVD in Maltese dogs. Although only a limited number of cases were analyzed, these data could be the basis for further research on the genetic predisposition to MVP and DMVD in Maltese dogs.
Project description:Babesia microti, a hemoprotozoan parasite of rodents, is also important as a zoonotic agent of human babesiosis. The Maltese cross form, which consists of four masses in an erythrocyte, is characteristic of the developmental stage of B. microti. Monoclonal antibody (MAb) 2-1E, which specifically recognizes the Maltese cross form of B. microti, has been described previously. In the present study, we examined the roles of the Maltese cross form during the infectious course of B. microti in mice. The number of the Maltese cross form increased in the peripheral blood of infected mice prior to the peak of parasitemia. With confocal laser scanning microscopy, MAb 2-1E was found to be reactive with the ring form, with the parasites undergoing transformation to the Maltese cross form and subsequent division, and also with extracellular merozoites. Furthermore, the Maltese cross form-related antigen (MRA) gene was isolated from a B. microti cDNA library by immunoscreening with MAb 2-1E, and the nucleotide sequence was determined. Genomic analyses indicated that the MRA gene exists as a single-copy gene in B. microti. Immunization of mice with recombinant MRA induced significant protective immunity against B. microti infection. These findings indicate that the Maltese cross form plays important roles in both the development of parasitemia and the protective response against the infection.
Project description:This article provides some supplementary analysis data of speech production and perception of glottal stops in the Semitic language Maltese. In Maltese, a glottal stop can occur as a phoneme, but also as a phonetic marker of vowel-initial words (as in the case with Germanic languages like English). Data from four experiments are provided, which will allow other researchers to reproduce the results and apply their own data-analysis techniques to these data for further data exploration. A production experiment (Experiment 1) investigates how often the glottal marking of vowel-initial words occurs (causing vowel-initial words to be ambiguous with words starting with a glottal stop as a phoneme) and whether the glottal gesture for this marking can be differentiated from an underlying (phonemic) glottal stop in its acoustic properties. Experiments 2 to 4 investigate how and to what extent Maltese listeners perceive glottal markings as lexical (phonemic) or epenthetic (phonetic), using a two-alternative forced choice task (Experiment 2), a visual-world eye tracking task with printed target words (Experiment 3) and a gating task (Experiment 4). A full account of theoretical consequences of these data can be found in the full length article entitled "The glottal stop between segmental and suprasegmental processing: The case of Maltese" .
Project description:Degenerative mitral valve disease (DMVD) is the most commonly acquired cardiac disease in dogs. This study evaluated the relationship between genetic variations in the serotonin transporter (SERT) gene of Maltese dogs and DMVD. Genomic DNA was extracted from blood samples collected from 20 client-owned DMVD Maltese dogs and 10 healthy control dogs, and each exon of the SERT gene was amplified via polymerase chain reaction. The resulting genetic sequences were aligned and analyzed for variations by comparing with reference sequences; the predicted secondary structures of these variations were modeled and cross-verified by applying computational methods. Genetic variations, including five nonsynonymous genetic variations, were detected in five exons. Protein structure and function of the five nonsynonymous genetic variations were predicted. Three of the five polymorphisms were predicted to be probable causes of damage to protein function and confirmed by protein structure model verification. This study identified six polymorphisms of the SERT gene in Maltese dogs with DMVD, suggesting an association between the SERT gene and canine DMVD. This is the first study of SERT mutation in Maltese dogs with DMVD and is considered a pilot study into clinical genetic examination for early DMVD diagnosis.
Project description:The Bostrichidae of the Maltese Islands are reviewed. Ten species are recorded with certainty from this Archipelago, of which 6 namely, Trogoxylonimpressum (Comolli, 1837), Amphicerusbimaculatus (A.G. Olivier, 1790), Heterobostrychusaequalis (Waterhouse, 1884), Sinoxylonunidentatum (Fabricius, 1801), Xyloperthellapicea (A.G. Olivier, 1790) and Apatemonachus Fabricius, 1775 are recorded for the first time. Two of the mentioned species (Heterobostrychusaequalis and Sinoxylonunidentatum) are alien and recorded only on the basis of single captures and the possible establishment of these species is discussed. Earlier records of Scobiciapustulata (Fabricius, 1801) from Malta are incorrect and should be attributed to Scobiciachevrieri (A. Villa & J.B. Villa, 1835). A zoogeographical analysis and an updated checklist of the 12 species of Bostrichidae recorded from the Maltese Islands and neigbouring Sicilian islands (Pantelleria, Linosa and Lampedusa) are also provided. Rhizoperthadominica(Fabricius, 1792)formgranulipennis Lesne in Beeson & Bhatia, 1937 from Uttarakhand (northern India) was overlooked by almost all subsequent authors. Its history is summarized and the following new synonymy is established: Rhizoperthadominica(Fabricius, 1792)formgranulipennis Lesne in Beeson & Bhatia, 1937 = Rhyzoperthadominica (Fabricius, 1792), syn. n. Finally, records of Amphicerusbimaculatus from Azerbaijan, of Bostrichuscapucinus (Linnaeus, 1758) from Jordan and Syria, of Scobiciachevrieri from Jordan and Italy, of Xyloperthellapicea from Italy, and of Apatemonachus from Corsica (France) and Italy, are also provided.
Project description:Long-term maintenance of transplanted organs is one of the major factors that increases survival time of recipients. Although obtaining a major histocompatibility complex (MHC)-matched donor with the recipient is essential for successful organ transplantation, there have been limited reports on MHC matching between dogs. In this study, we analyzed the canine MHC matching rates using Maltese, one of the most popular purebred dogs, and mongrel dogs in Korea. Genomic DNA was extracted from blood leukocytes and DNA was amplified by polymerase chain reaction with primers specific to MHC microsatellite markers. The MHC matching degree was confirmed by the microsatellite markers using polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The MHC matching rates of each donor-recipient groups including Maltese-Maltese, mongrel-mongrel and Maltese-mongrel were 4.76%, 5.13% and 6.67%, respectively. There were no significant differences in the MHC matching degree between each group. These results demonstrate that MHC-matched donors could be selected from other breeds as much as from the same breed for transplantation. Knowledge of the MHC matching degree of purebred and mongrel dogs would offer valuable information not only for improving the success rate of organ transplantation surgery in canine patients but also for transplantation research using experimental canine models.
Project description:The potential application of multivariate three-way data analysis techniques, namely parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC) and discriminant multi-way partial least squares regression (DN-PLSR), on three-dimensional excitation emission matrix (3D-EEM) fluorescent data were used to identify the uniqueness and authenticity of Maltese extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). A non-negativity constrained PARAFAC model revealed that a four-component model provided the most appropriate solution. Examination of the extracted components in mode 2 and 3 showed that these belonged to different fluorophores present in extra virgin olive oil. Application of linear discriminate analysis (LDA) and binary logistic regression analysis on the concentration of the four extracted fluorophores, showed that it is possible to discriminate Maltese EVOOs from non-Maltese EVOOs. The application of DN-PLSR provided superior means for discrimination of Maltese EVOOs. Further inspection of the extracted latent variables and their variable importance plots (VIPs) provided strong proof of the existence of four types of fluorophores present in EVOOs and their potential application for the discrimination of Maltese EVOOs.
Project description:Background:There have been anecdotal reports of episodic involuntary movements in the Border Terrier dog breed for over a decade. Recently, it has been hypothesized that this condition may be a form of paroxysmal dystonic choreoathetosis. The aim of this study was to characterize the phenomenology and clinical course of this condition and compare it to known human movement disorders. Methods:Data were collected retrospectively from clinical cases treated by veterinary neurologists and additional information was collected prospectively with an ad-hoc online survey directed to owners of affected dogs. Results:The episodes are characterized by generalized dystonia, tremors, titubation, and, in some cases, autonomic signs, such as salivation and vomiting. The median age at onset of the episodes was 3 years and the interval between clusters of episodes could last several months. Most of the episodes occurred from rest, and 67% of the owners reported that the episodes were associated with a trigger, most often excitement. Some owners reported an improvement after changing their dog's diet. We hypothesize that the Border Terrier attacks represent a form of paroxysmal nonkinesigenic dyskinesia. Conclusions:The finding of a dystonia phenotype within an inbred population suggests a genetic predisposition, and elucidating the genetic cause could facilitate improved understanding of dystonia. This genetic predisposition and the effect of treatment with anticonvulsant drugs and dietary changes on the severity of the paroxysms warrant further investigation on this condition.
Project description:Three specimens of Stephanopachys quadricollis (Marseul, 1878) were recently found in Malta in UV light traps and represent the first record of this species for this country. Although Stephanopachys quadricollis is native to the Mediterranean basin, it is not yet clear if these Maltese records are due to a natural population or to an interception. Distributional, nomenclatural and biological data on this species are summarized, and a new synonymy is established: Stephanopachys quadricollis (Marseul, 1879) = Stephanopachys quadraticollis Kocher, 1956, syn. n.