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Objective— To investigate the development of gingival hyperplasia in dogs after renal transplantation and administration of microemulsified cyclosporine A (MCsA).

Study Design— Experimental study.

Animals— Healthy adult mongrel dogs (n=5).

Methods— As part of study on renal transplantation, dogs administered MCsA (20 mg/kg/day), azathioprine, and prednisolone to prevent graft rejection were monitored for development of gingival changes. Prednisolone was discontinued after 3 months. MCsA dose was adjusted to maintain whole blood trough concentration of 400–700 ng/mL. Gingival change was evaluated by weekly examination and photodocumentation, and gingival biopsy for histopathology was performed at 28 weeks.

Results— One dog was lost because of acute graft rejection. Gingival hyperplasia developed in 3 of 4 dogs. The earliest gingival changes occurred in the interdental papillae at 20 weeks after transplantation. On histopathology, the underlying connective tissue was thickened and contained increase numbers of fibroblasts and inflammatory infiltrates.

Conclusions— Long-term immunosuppression with an MCsA-based treatment likely induces substantial gingival hyperplasia when therapeutic, immunosuppressive blood levels of MCsA were maintained for 32 weeks.

Clinical Relevance— MCsA is used for immune-mediated diseases and preventing rejection after transplant in dogs. MCsA blood levels, and gingival hyperplasia should be monitored by routine examination of the interdental papilla in dogs administered MCsA for long periods.