Investigation of inflammatory markers in horses with acute abdominal pain

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterResearch


The use of acute phase proteins as objective markers of underlying pathology may facilitate the decision-making regarding diagnosis, treatment and estimation of prognosis of colic horses in a referral hospital. Evaluation of acute phase proteins in both serum and peritoneal fluid of colic horses in a referral hospital have not been reported earlier.

Evaluation of serum and peritoneal fluid (PF) levels of serum amyloid A (SAA) and haptoglobin in horses with colic.

Blood and PF samples were collected from 75 colic horses at admission to a referral hospital and from 19 healthy control horses. SAA and haptoglobin were measured in both serum and PF. Colic cases were classified according to diagnosis, treatment and outcome based on the clinical records. Protein concentrations were compared between groups with student´s t-test and ANOVA.

Colic horses had significantly higher mean concentrations of serum SAA, PF SAA and PF haptoglobin compared to controls. PF SAA was significantly higher in horses with infectious conditions compared to both simple and strangulating obstructions, where as PF haptoglobin was higher in both strangulating and infectious conditions compared to simple obstructions. PF haptoglobin was the only protein found to be significantly different between horses needing medical vs. surgical treatment and between survivors vs. non-survivors. Serum haptoglobin was not statistically different in any of the groups of horses compared.

SAA and haptoglobin can be measured in equine peritoneal fluid similar to measurements in serum. The peritoneal fluid concentrations are more indicative of diagnosis, treatment necessary and outcome than the serum concentrations.

Potential relevance
Evaluation of SAA and haptoglobin in serum and peritoneal fluid might therefore be relevant as diagnostic and prognostic markers in colic horses and should be investigated further.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2010
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Event4th SHARE symposium: Biomarkers across species. - Copenhagen, Denmark
Duration: 11 Nov 2010 → …


Conference4th SHARE symposium: Biomarkers across species.
Period11/11/2010 → …

    Research areas

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