• Cardiomyopathy;
  • Dilated cardiomyopathy;
  • Greiss;
  • Nitric oxide.

The purpose of this study was to determine whether nitric oxide (NO) concentrations are high in dogs with chronic valvular disease (CVD) and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) compared to healthy controls and to determine whether NO concentrations are correlated with type of cardiac disease, disease severity, medical therapy, or serum tumor necrosis factor (TNF) and interleukin-1 (IL-1). Blood was collected from 32 dogs with DCM, from 10 dogs with CVD, and from 10 healthy controls. Indirect determination of NO concentrations was performed by a commercial photoabsorbance assay that uses a Greiss reagent to measure the concentration of nitrite and nitrate (NN), end products of NO metabolism. TNF and IL-1 activities were measured by bioassay. Mean NN concentrations were significantly higher in dogs with heart disease (median, 4.57 |juM; range, 0.00–31.05 |juM) than in controls (median, 0.00 |juM; range, 0.00–6.16 |juM; P= .04). NN concentrations in dogs with cardiac disease were not correlated with type or severity of cardiac disease, medication type, or TNF and IL-1 concentrations. NN concentrations were inversely correlated with fractional shortening. The results of this study suggest that metabolites of NO are increased in some dogs with cardiac disease, but these increases appear to be independent of disease severity, TNF and IL-1 concentrations, and type of pharmacologic intervention.