Center for Companion Animal Health

Highlights of CCAH-Supported Research

The Center for Companion Animal Health has provided essential funding to assist the following landmark programs and research accomplishments:

  • First companion animal hemodialysis program in the United States, and the first hemodialysis worldwide for cats with kidney failure.
  • First residency program in veterinary genetics (worldwide)
  • First academic program in Shelter Medicine, dedicated to improving the health and adoptability of animals in animal shelters. For more information see the Koret Shelter Medicine Program web site.
  • First Shelter Medicine Residency (worldwide)
  • Discovered vaccination could cause a type of cancer (fibrosarcoma) in cats
  • Discovered that low taurine levels in commercial cat food caused a devastating but common heart disease in cats. Once taurine was added to the diet, the disease was virtually eliminated.
  • Foundational research into feline husbandry and infectious diseases including feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) aka "feline AIDS"; feline coronavirus (FECV); feline calicivirus; and feline infectious peritonitis (FIP). (For more information about FIP research, see the "SOCK FIP" web site).
  • Identifying optimal requirements, metabolism and toxicity levels: Vitamins A, B, K, Choline and chloride for cats
  • Described the ultrastructure of urinary calculi in cats
  • Copper influences reproductive efficiency in queens
  • Nutritional requirements of growing kittens: Folate, Vitamin D & kidney effects
  • Determining causes/risk factors for and the management of cats living in multi-cat facilities
  • Evaluation and development of surgical technique: Fit & geometry in total hip replacement
  • Discovered decreased zinc in pregnant queens results in cleft palate of kittens
  • Development of a panel of monoclonal antibodies for feline leukocyte antigens
  • Diagnostics - using non-invasive urine dipstick for detection of cancer
  • Gastrointestinal: Helicobacter - association with G.I. disorders
  • Linking Pregnancy failure in cats with low taurine levels
  • Molecular cloning of Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (Feline AIDS)
  • Veterinary Physical Rehabilitation: CCAH fundraised and built the facility
  • Identified a gene mutation responsible for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Identified a gene genetic mutation for polycystic kidney disease in cats
  • Scientific Conferences and Events over several years: Sponsored Hypothyroid, Alternative Pets, Genomics, Feline Inherited Diseases, Cancer, Behavior,  etc.
  • CCAH Building - fundraised for and added clinical and research space including: lobby, treatment rooms, conference rooms, exam rooms, horse and dog stalls, clinical and research offices, cancer and genetics laboratories and support rooms, medical and radiation oncology, receiving areas for 7 services, major equipment (RT); 2nd floor terrace/seating, outside gardens and planters, courtyards, dog exercise areas, lawn and sitting areas.
  • Linear Accelerator - CCAH was pivotal in acquiring this machine and assisted faculty in fundraising for the suite and stereotactic radio surgery program for cancer treatment
  • Hemodialysis Unit Renovation – improves clinical and research applications and opportunities by upgrading to add Blood Purification and other capabilities.