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New Study Available for Maine Coon Cats!

 

Interaction between genetic and nutritional factors in the development of

hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in Maine Coon cats

 

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most common heart disease in cats, occurring in 15-20% of the general feline population.  HCM involves a thickened heart muscle which can cause dysfunction of the heart with secondary problems, such as congestive heart failure, blood clots, and sudden death.  While genetic mutations have been identified in some cats (especially the Maine Coon cat which can have a mutation in the myosin binding protein C gene) as a cause for the disease, the severity of the disease varies widely and cannot be accounted for only by the mutation.  Therefore, environmental modifiers, especially nutrition, likely play a role and the interactions between genes and nutrients provide a promising target for modulation of disease.  The purpose of this study is to measure body size and nutritional factors in Maine Coon cats with and without the myosin binding protein C mutation to determine what relationship exists between nutrients, genetic mutations, and heart muscle thickening. This will provide the basis for future research, a better understanding of HCM, and the opportunity to advance the treatment of this disease in cats.

 

Inclusion Criteria:

Maine Coon cats (male or female) that are at least two years of age.  Cats can be with or without known heart disease.  Owners must be willing to bring their cat to Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine in North Grafton, MA for a single 1-2 hour visit.

Exclusion Criteria:

Cats with other major diseases (such as cancer, diabetes mellitus, or unregulated hyperthyroidism) will be excluded.  If taking heart medications, cats must be on stable medications for at least 1 week.

 

Benefits to Client:

Costs for one outpatient visit will be covered by the study.  This includes registration, examination, echocardiogram, x-ray, blood pressure, and blood tests (including DNA testing for MYBPC3 mutation).

 

This study will be starting in June.  For more information, please contact:

Dr. Lisa Freeman 508-839-5395 x84696 or lisa.freeman@tufts.edu

 


For information on other clinical trials taking place at Tufts, please see our Clinical Trials Website

http://www.tufts.edu/vet/clinical_trials

 

 

 

 

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