This site is being completely overhauled with a new, cleaner layout and updated information on numerous topics of interest to pet owners, pet lovers and veterinary professionals.
During the transition, which will take several months, some of the older pages (from the website created in 1997) will still be available via the Other Topics links on this page. One by one, those pages will be replaced with revised, more streamlined versions that provide improved readability and contain the most recently available updates to content. It is hoped that these improvements will make this site attractive to new viewers and promote a frequent return viewership.
Tne most recently upodated page describes Diabetes in dogs and cats…
This month the featured topic is focused on DNA Testing for inherited disease. This article describes the current science of genetic testing for heritable diseases in our companion animals. The entire genome for dogs and cats has already been sequenced and science will now be able to provide a better understanding of heritable diseases, such as degenerative myelopathy, a devastating neurological disease which affects German Sherherd dogs and Welch Corgi dogs with a greater frequency than in other breeds.
Previous featured articles can be found using the links at the bottom of the links window, to the left
Newman Veterinary Medical Services provides temporary veterinary services to companion animal veterinary hospitals and clinics all over the Puget Sound region of Washington State. Dr. Newman graduated Washington State University, School of Veterinary Medicine, in 1991, following a lengthy career in bioresearch.
To contact the company about this website or concerns related to general veterinary medicine, please use the form below. But keep in mind that without personally examining your pet, it is not possible…nor is it legal…for this website to offer specific medical advice, such as presumtive diagnoses, diagnostic testing or treatment options for your beloved pet(s). For such specific concerns, please visit your own veterinarian.
New Research in Regenerative Therapies
In a subsequent news article (coming soon), exciting research for treating osteoarthritis in dogs using autologous platelets was presented. Technical issues in platelet therapy have to due with the ability to adequately separate blood components: platelets (which provide growth factors and an environment for repair), other cell types (e.g. White Blood Cells, which are proinflammatory and can negatively affect local repair) and plasma which contains a large milieux of factors and cofactors that can mitigate the functions of the other components. Currently, two companies invested in this technology for veterinary patients are Harvest Technologies and Anthrex. Currently, it appears that platelet preparations must be relatively free of WBCs (less than .0005% of platelet number) to be efficacious.
Ongoing research into other regenerative therapies for this osteoarthritis as well as for other musculoskeletal injuries is promising. These include autologous-conditioned serum (ACS) and the generation of interleukin1-antagonist receptor protein (IRAP), as well as stem cell therapy (SCT).
Interleulin-1 is a family of proinflammatory molecules (aka “cytokines”) produced by macrophages and monocytes ( types of white blood cells) and other cells types in blood and tissue in response to tissue injury or insult. IRAP blocks the ability of Interleukin-1 to bind to its natural receptor and mediate inflammation (and the resulting pain). Because ILRA can block inflammation, it is already being used in human medicine for treatment of various conditions For example, IRAP is approved in humans as a therapy for patients with rheumatoid arthritis, because it reduces symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and slows the progressive joint destruction. The system to produce therapeutic amounts of IRAP is known as ACS and involved incubating monocytes derived from the patient with etched glass beads, which apparently stimulates synthesis of the IRAP. The preparation is then centrifuged to removed the cellular material and the resulting serum is injected into the appropriate sites of pain. The commercial products are Orthokine® by Orthogen AG, Dusseldorf, Germany and under the name of IRAPII® for equine and canine veterinary species by Arthrex®, Inc.. Apparently, Orthokine® therapy has been used by some famous athletes:, notably Kobe Bryant of the LA Lakers, the golfer Freddie Couples, and A-Rod of the Yankees.
Stem cells were originally perceived as primitive, pluripotent cells that were capable of differentiating to become any type of cell in the body. Once diffentiated, it was assumed that the cell was forever committed to remain in the differentiated cell type. However, we now know that is not true. Differentiated cells can return to an undifferentiated form, when provided with the “right” signals. Stem cell therapy now involves harvesting cells (e.g. fat cells), provoking them to become undifferentiated stem cells, then injecting these into the sites of inflammation. While it was presumed at one point that these newly introduced cells would differentiate into healthy cells of the local cell type, replacing the older diseased cells, it turns out this is not true. Rather the stem cells are acting to modulate the local environment to stimulate increased vascularity and blood supply to the area, as well as recruiting local stem cells to effect repair. While research is promising, definitive proof of efficacy is not yet available. Nevertheless, the technology is made available to veterinarians by companies, such as Vet-Stem (https://www.vet-stem.com/). A number of veterinarians are trained to utilize stem cells on dogs.
This page contains links to selected websites providing immediate access to information important to pet owners. Other links may be added as appropriate and/or requested by viewers.
Photo/Image of the Month
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Earlier this spring, hundreds of dogs in and around Chicago began showing signs of respiratory illness, which testing revealed to be caused by canine influenza. Further genetic testing revealed there was something unusual about this outbreak: It wasn't the usual H3N8 strain of canine influenza that was making dogs sick; it was H3N2, a strain that had previously only been identified in Asia. To date, the virus has caused at least six deaths, and more than 1,000 illnesses, in the Chicago area and neighboring states. In this podcast, Cornell University veterinarian Dr. Amy Glaser talks about this newly introduced strain of dog flu and how pet owners can keep their dogs from becoming infected.
Vaccines have played a major role in preventing disease and improving public health around the world. These benefits have been extended to our pets as well, helping to protect them from viruses such as rabies, distemper, and parvovirus. There is, however, a small but vocal anti-vaccination movement that questions the necessity of vaccines, and veterinary medicine may not be immune from this movement; New York magazine recently reported that some veterinarians have noticed an uptick in the number of pets that are not being vaccinated, due to a similar anti-vaccination ideology. In this podcast, Dr. Laurel Gershwin, a member of AVMA’s Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents, discusses the importance of vaccinations for our pets.
February 1 marks the beginning of National Pet Dental Health Month. More than just a cosmetic issue, yellow teeth and bad breath can be a sign of serious disease in our pets, which may affect their kidneys, livers, and hearts. Oral disease is the most frequently diagnosed health problem for pets, with most dogs and cats becoming affected by age 3. In this podcast, Dr. Jan Bellows, past president of the American Veterinary Dental College, talks about the importance of dental health for our pets.
How well protected are pets shortly after their rabies vaccinations are out of date, and what's the appropriate response for treating and caring for pets in such circumstances? These were the questions researchers set out to answer in a study published in the January 15 issue of the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (JAVMA).
Will you be one of the millions of people making New Year’s Resolutions this year? If so, have you thought about including your pets in your New Year’s resolutions? Perhaps by partnering with a furry friend, you’ll be more inclined to stick to those healthy promises you made. And just like us, most of our pets could benefit from shedding a few pounds and spending more time being active. In this podcast, AVMA CEO Dr. Ron DeHaven talks about making New Year’s resolutions for your pets.
Across the country, communities have attempted to reduce the incidence of serious and fatal dog bites by restricting the ownership of certain types of dogs, most often pit bulls. But others, including some states, have made these types of breed-specific laws illegal. So are breed-specific laws an effective way to reduce the incidence of dog bites? Or do they unfairly target good dogs whose only crime is matching the description of what some people believe to be dangerous? In this podcast, Dr. Emily Patterson-Kane, an animal welfare scientist at the AVMA, discusses breed-specific legislation.
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