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Total sialic acid: an acute phase reactant in cats with a possible role in feline coronavirus infection



Total sialic acid: an acute phase reactant in cats with a possible role in feline coronavirus infection



Canadian Journal of Veterinary Research 73(2): 144-150



The aims of this study were to validate a colorimetric method to measure total sialic acid (TSA) in feline serum and to investigate the serum concentration of TSA in clinically healthy cats seronegative (n = 9) and seropositive (n = 48) for feline coronavirus (FCoV), and in cats affected by feline infectious peritonitis (FIP, n = 28), tumors (n = 20), or inflammation (n = 16). The correlation between TSA and alpha(1)-acid glycoprotein (AGP) was also investigated. The method employed in this study is precise and accurate at TSA levels (in mg/L) commonly encountered in feline serum. No significant differences between seropositive (385.6 +/- 192.2 mg/L) and seronegative (433.5 +/- 179.0 mg/L) cats were detectable, suggesting that the simple infection by FCoVs does not influence TSA levels. Compared with seropositive controls, the concentration of TSA was higher in cats with FIP (556.7 +/- 268.3 mg/L, P = 0.003), tumors (522.5 +/- 294.4 mg/L, P = 0.028), and inflammation (546.8 +/- 208.3 mg/L, P = 0.018). The discriminating power of TSA for FIP is moderate (area under the ROC curve = 0.65) and the likelihood ratio is higher than 3.0 only at high TSA levels. Consequently, TSA could support a diagnosis of FIP only at extremely high serum concentration (> 800 mg/L) or when the pre-test probability of FIP is high. No correlations were found between the TSA and AGP concentrations in cats with FIP, suggesting that sialylated proteins other than AGP are present. Both the antibody titre and the degree of AGP sialylation were negatively correlated with TSA levels, suggesting that increased TSA may contribute to reduce the burden of FCoVs.

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Accession: 056611125

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PMID: 19436584


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