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Open Access Evaluation of a Spontaneous Canine Model of Immunoglobulin E-Mediated Food Hypersensitivity: Dynamic Changes in Serum and Fecal Allergen-Specific Immunoglobulin E Values Relative to Dietary Change

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The purpose of the pilot study reported here was to evaluate serum and fecal total and allergen-specific immunoglobulin E (IgE) responses to dietary change in five Maltese x beagle dogs with suspected food hypersensitivity, compared with those of five clinically normal dogs. Clinical parameters (pruritus, otitis, and diarrhea) improved in the Maltese x beagle dogs during feeding of a novel diet, and signs were exacerbated by oral allergen provocation. Relative concentrations of serum and fecal wheat-, corn-, and milk-specific IgE were determined by use of an ELISA. The onset of clinical signs of disease was accompanied by an increase in serum allergen-specific IgE concentrations. In contrast, changes in clinical signs of disease or allergen-specific IgE values were not seen in the control group undergoing the same regimen. Total serum IgE concentration was measured by use of the ELISA, and comparison with known quantities of a monoclonal IgE allowed absolute values to be reported. Values were high in the Maltese x beagle colony (7 to 34 g/ml), compared with those in the control dogs (0.7 to 6 g/ml). Total serum and total fecal IgE concentrations did not change in either group during the study. Although allergen-specific IgE was detected in the feces of both groups, significant interassay variability made interpretation of the results difficult. The authors concluded that these Maltese x beagle dogs satisfied the currently recognized clinical criteria for the diagnosis of canine food hypersensitivity. Furthermore, the clinical and serologic responses seen in these dogs in response to oral allergen provocation suggest that this may be a useful model for the study of spontaneous food hypersensitivity.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Comparative Allergy Program, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27606

Publication date: August 1, 2002

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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