Short Takes: March 2015

A new test for chronic kidney disease in cats has identified its onset an average of 17 months earlier than existing methods, according to a small study published in the Veterinary Journal. Researchers at Oregon State University and IDEXX Laboratory developed a biomarker - a substance indicating disease called SDMA - and used it in a controlled study of 32 older but otherwise healthy cats. When available commercially, a test based on the biomarker could alert cat owners and veterinarians to kidney disease through periodic checkups, researchers say.Chronic kidney disease is common in geriatric cats and often causes their death, says researcher Jean Hall, DVM, Ph.D., at Oregon State. Damage from it is irreversible, but this is an important advance, in that we should be able to identify the problem earlier and use special diets to slow the disease.

Robo-Tuffy Provides Hands-on Training

Students honing their emergency skills at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine owe gratitude to a special feline named Fluffy, who doesn’t meow and never needs a litter box. Fluffy is a robotic cat equipped with a mechanical pulse and heart, artificial lungs and electronic hardware and software capable of simulating cardiac arrest, lung diseases, shock and other medical conditions. She and a canine version named Jerry are believed to be the first of their kind used in veterinary schools. Think of Fluffy as a high-tech pet version of the popular battery-operated board game Operation, which tests players’ hand-eye coordination and motor skills.

Cat Research Woes

Why has feline health research fallen behind? Heres the scoop.

Modern Imaging: Many Ways to Scan a Cat

Four technologies are currently used - X-rays, ultrasound, MRI and CT scans.

CT Scans: An Inside View

Computed tomography has become a valuable diagnostic tool for veterinarians. Heres how it may one day help your cat.

MRI: The New Frontier

Use of this modern diagnostic tool is burgeoning these days in veterinary medicine. Heres how it can help your cat.

Ultrasound Provides Inside Information

Veterinarians increasingly depend on this technology to diagnose feline disorders.

Welcome to My World

Dr. Mew Checks Out the Newest Cataract Treatments

New Therapy

Less Radiation, Fewer Treatments

The Linac

Dr. Mew Visits a High-Tech Cancer Buster

Welcome to My World

Dr. Mew Checks Out the Newest Cataract Treatments

Current Research

Investigating the Role of the Enzyme Glucokinase and Blood Sugar Control in Diabetic Cats