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Open Access Novel Technique for Retroperitoneal Implantation of Telemetry Transmitters for Physiologic Monitoring in Göttingen Minipigs (Sus scrofa domesticus)

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Telemetric monitoring of physiologic parameters in animal models is a critical component of chemical and biologic agent studies. The long-term collection of neurobehavioral and other physiologic data can require larger telemetry devices. Furthermore, such devices must be implanted in a location that is safe, well-tolerated, and functional. Göttingen minipigs (Sus scrofa domesticus) present an ideal large animal model for chemical agent studies due to their relatively small size, characterized health status, and ease of training and handling. We report an effective approach to implanting a novel device to measure transthoracic impedance to approximate respiratory tidal volume and rate in Suidae. We tested the approach using 24 male Göttingen minipigs. A ventral midline abdominal incision extending from the umbilicus to the prepuce was followed by a paramedian incision of the parietal peritoneum and dorsal blunt dissection to create a retroperitoneal pocket. The device was anchored inside the pocket to the internal abdominal musculature with 3-0 nonabsorbable suture, biopotential leads were routed through the abdominal musculature, and the pocket was closed with 3-0 absorbable suture. Paired biopotential leads were anchored intermuscularly at the level of the seventh rib midway between spine and sternum bilaterally to provide surrogate data for respiratory function. Postoperative recovery and gross pathology findings at necropsy were used to assess safety and refine the surgical procedure. Results demonstrated that this procedure permitted effective monitoring of complex physiologic data, including transthoracic impedance, without negatively affecting the health and behavior of the animals.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Analytical Toxicology Division, United States Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, USA. [email protected] 2: Veterinary Service Program, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Silver Spring, Maryland, USA 3: Analytical Toxicology Division, United States Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, USA 4: Research Support Division, United States Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, USA

Publication date: December 1, 2014

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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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