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Clinical Trial: Cornell enrolls cats with sepsis

Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine is currently enrolling cats with naturally occurring sepsis in an effort to provide insights into why they behave differently compared to other species

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Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine is currently enrolling cats with naturally occurring sepsis, a life-threatening syndrome characterized by the body’s response to a serious infection.

Although sepsis in cats is less common than in dogs, cats have a higher risk of dying from their infection, according to the college. Cats with sepsis tend to have low heart rates, low body temperature and stomach pain. It is not known why they develop these clinical signs or why they have lower survival rates compared to people or other companion animals, the college further noted.

Through the clinical trial, the researchers hope to gain insights into why cats behave differently compared to other species.

Goals of the trial:

  • To study feline inflammatory, immune, endocrine, cardiovascular, coagulation and metabolic responses to sepsis;
  • To identify diagnostic biomarkers for feline sepsis by comparing these parameters to healthy cats;
  • To identify potential prognostic biomarkers for feline sepsis by comparing these parameters in those that survive to discharge compared to those who die or are euthanized due to illness severity; and
  • To identify the unique feline responses to sepsis by comparing these parameters to dogs with sepsis.

Eligibility: “Any cat at least 9 pounds diagnosed with bacterial sepsis admitted to the Cornell University Hospital for Animals will be eligible. Sepsis will be defined by the presence of suspected or confirmed bacterial infections AND by high or low heart rate, high respiratory rate, high or low temperature, high white blood cell count. Cats with a known coagulopathy or severe thrombocytopenia will be excluded.”

The study pays for $700 of imaging, EKG recording and blood work.

For additional details, visit the website.

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