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Research Translates to Cutting-Edge Treatments


February 25, 2016

Research often translates into innovative procedures aimed at improving animal health or saving animals in dire situations.

Research often translates into innovative procedures aimed at improving animal health or saving animals in dire situations.

For clients of the UC Davis veterinary hospital, one of the biggest advantages the hospital can offer is the ability for their animals to benefit from the vast research being conducted at the university. This research often translates into innovative procedures aimed at improving animal health or saving animals in dire situations. Many of these groundbreaking procedures are offered via the Veterinary Center for Clinical Trials, which seeks to advance patient care in a variety of disciplines, encompassing the wide array of services available in the hospital.

A current trial showing tremendous success is a new treatment for a debilitating oral disease in cats, feline chronic gingivostomatitis. The technique involves taking a cat’s own fat-derived stem cells, processing and characterizing them, and then giving them back intravenously to reduce inflammation and promote tissue regeneration. The study also identified a potentially useful biomarker that could determine if cats will respond to stem cell treatment.

“We’re the first researchers to come up with this patent-pending technique for any mammals, including humans,” said Dr. Boaz Arzi of the Dentistry and Oral Surgery Service.

A recently completed clinical trial by Dr. Michele Steffey of the Soft Tissue Surgery Service led to an alternative treatment for nasal adenocarcinoma, a cancer in dogs’ nasal cavities. This new approach to treating nasal tumors involves a minimally-invasive method of killing the tumor by freezing it with cryoprobes.

Beyond treating current conditions in clinical trials, other research studies can help in eliminating disorders in future generations of animals. Two recent studies were successful in leading to the creation of genetic tests that determine the possibility of subvalvular aortic stenosis in Newfoundlands (conducted by Dr. Joshua Stern and the Cardiology Service) and encephalopathy in Alaskan huskies (conducted by Dr. Karen Vernau and the Neurology/Neurosurgery Service).

For more information on clinical trials at UC Davis, please see www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/clinicaltrials.