JOURNAL ARTICLE

Dynamics in serum of the inflammatory markers serum amyloid A (SAA), haptoglobin, fibrinogen and alpha2-globulins during induced noninfectious arthritis in the horse

C Hultén, U Grönlund, J Hirvonen, R-M Tulamo, M M Suominen, G Marhaug, M Forsberg
Equine Veterinary Journal 2002, 34 (7): 699-704
12455841
Despite the importance of noninfectious joint diseases in equine medicine, little is known about the acute phase response which may be elicited if the local inflammatory process of noninfectious arthritis is sufficiently strong, Therefore the aim of this study was to monitor the systemic inflammatory response during experimentally-induced noninfectious arthritis by studying the dynamics in serum of the acute phase proteins serum amyloid A (SAA), haptoglobin, fibrinogen and alpha2-globulins. Twenty-four Standardbred horses, age 3-7 years, found healthy on thorough clinical, radiological, haematological and serum biochemical examination, were injected aseptically into the right midcarpal joint with amphotericin B. Blood samples were drawn before induction of arthritis (0 h), and at 8, 16, 24, 36 and 48 h postinduction and then on Days 3, 4, 5 and 15 postinduction. All horses developed lameness with joint effusion and joint heat as well as increased respiratory rate, heart rate and body temperature. The lameness started to decline after 24-36 h and, in most animals, systemic signs disappeared on Day 2 postinjection. The concentration of the acute phase proteins increased following induction of arthritis. The SAA concentrations were higher than baseline concentrations from 16 h postinduction and were maximal at 36-48 h (227 times baseline concentration). The haptoglobin concentrations were higher than baseline concentrations from 24 h and were maximal at 48-96 h (1.14 times baseline concentration). The maximal concentrations of fibrinogen were seen between 36-72 h postinjection and increased on average 0.87 times from baseline concentrations. The fibrinogen concentrations were higher than baseline concentrations from 24 h postinjection. Alpha2-globulins concentrations showed a minor increase and increased 0.55 times from baseline concentrations. The markers had returned to baseline concentrations by Day 15. Our results demonstrate that amphotericin B-induced arthritis in a single joint gives rise to a systemic acute phase response measurable as increased concentrations in serum SAA, haptoglobin, fibrinogen and alpha2-globulins during the first 2 weeks of the condition and, thereby, that such an increase need not be indicative of infectious arthritis. Further research should be aimed at determining whether chronic noninfectious arthritis in the horse gives rise to increased acute phase protein concentrations in serum.

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