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Effects of drug treatment on inflammation and hyperreactivity of airways and on immune variables in cats with experimentally induced asthma.

Author(s): Reinero CR, Decile KC, Byerly JR, Berghaus RD, Walby WE, Berghaus LJ, Hyde DM, Schelegle ES, Gershwin LJ

Affiliation(s): Departments of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616-8734, USA.

Publication date & source: 2005-07, Am J Vet Res., 66(7):1121-7.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Randomized Controlled Trial

OBJECTIVE: To compare the effects of an orally administered corticosteroid (prednisone), an inhaled corticosteroid (flunisolide), a leukotriene-receptor antagonist (zafirlukast), an antiserotonergic drug (cyproheptadine), and a control substance on the asthmatic phenotype in cats with experimentally induced asthma. ANIMALS: 6 cats with asthma experimentally induced by the use of Bermuda grass allergen (BGA). PROCEDURES: A randomized, crossover design was used to assess changes in the percentage of eosinophils in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF); airway hyperresponsiveness; blood lymphocyte phenotype determined by use of flow cytometry; and serum and BALF content of BGA-specific IgE, IgG, and IgA determined by use of ELISAs. RESULTS: Mean +/- SE eosinophil percentages in BALF when cats were administered prednisone (5.0 +/- 2.3%) and flunisolide (2.5 +/- 1.7%) were significantly lower than for the control treatment (33.7 +/- 11.1%). We did not detect significant differences in airway hyperresponsiveness or lymphocyte surface markers among treatments. Content of BGA-specific IgE in serum was significantly lower when cats were treated with prednisone (25.5 +/- 5.4%), compared with values for the control treatment (63.6 +/- 12.9%); no other significant differences were observed in content of BGA-specific immunoglobulins among treatments. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Orally administered and inhaled corticosteroids decreased eosinophilic inflammation in airways of cats with experimentally induced asthma. Only oral administration of prednisone decreased the content of BGA-specific IgE in serum; no other significant local or systemic immunologic effects were detected among treatments. Inhaled corticosteroids can be considered as an alternate method for decreasing airway inflammation in cats with asthma.

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