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Natriuretic peptides as biomarkers in hyperthyroid cats

P. Menaut, D. J. Connolly, A. Volk, C. Pace, V. Luis Fuentes and others

NATRIURETIC peptides (NPs) are neurohormones involved in the body's defence against hypertension and plasma volume expansion. Brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) and atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) are the two most studied, with the biologically inactive N-terminal fragments, NT-proBNP and NT-proANP, being used as biomarkers. Natriuretic peptide production is chronically upregulated in hypertrophied and failing hearts. In hyperthyroid cats, cardiovascular signs such as tachycardia and heart murmurs are common.

This study tested the hypothesis that the circulating natriuretic peptide concentration would be increased in hyperthyroid cats and that natriuretic peptide concentration would decrease following restoration of the euthyroid state.

Hyperthyroid cats were recruited from three first-opinion clinics. A full physical examination, plasma biochemistry and total thyroxine (T4) measurement was carried out in all cats. Hyperthyroid cats were then treated with methimazole alone or methimazole and subsequent surgical thyroidectomy. In the 61 cats that completed the study, total thyroxine levels decreased on average from 122 nmol/l before treatment to 11.9 nmol/l after treatment; heart rate from 216 bpm to 180 bpm; and …

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