Acute phase proteins in dogs naturally infected with the Giant Kidney Worm (Dioctophyme renale)
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Background: Dioctophyme renale is a nematode parasite of dogs, usually found in the right kidney, causing severe damage to the renal parenchyma. Objectives: The objective was to evaluate the acute phase response in dogs naturally infected with this Giant Kidney Worm and the possible effects of nephrectomy on circulating concentrations of select acute phase proteins (APP) such as serum amyloid A (SAA), C-reactive protein (CRP), and haptoglobin (HP). Methods: Nephrectomy was performed in infected dogs and the worms were collected for identification. Blood samples were taken 24 hours before surgery, and 4, 8, and 12 hours postoperatively on the following 10 consecutive days, and 28 days after surgery. Acute phase protein concentrations were determined at all time points. Cortisol concentrations were determined 24 hours before surgery and at recovery (28 days after surgery). One-way ANOVA and Friedman test were used for multiple comparisons; the Wilcoxon-signed rank test was used to compare variables, and Spearman's rho rank test was used to assess the correlation between the number of parasites recovered from the dogs and the APP concentration. Results: Forty-five parasites were recovered from the 12 dogs evaluated in this study. Dogs showed significantly increased HP concentrations (P <.05) but lower CRP and SAA concentrations before surgery, and cortisol concentrations were significantly higher at admission when compared to recovery. No significant correlations were found between the number of parasites and APP concentrations. Conclusion: There is a particular acute phase response profile in dogs with kidney worm infection. Nephrectomy induced a short-term inflammatory process.