Part of this work was presented at the 2008 ACVIM Forum, Seattle, WA; at the annual ECVIM-CA Congress, in Ghent, Belgium, September 2008 (winner of the ESVE abstract award); and at the 2009 ACVIM Forum and Canadian Veterinary Medical Association Convention, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Plasma ACTH Precursors in Cats with Pituitary-Dependent Hyperadrenocorticism
Version of Record online: 10 APR 2012
Copyright © 2012 by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine
Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine
Volume 26, Issue 3, pages 575–581, May-June 2012
How to Cite
Benchekroun, G., de Fornel-Thibaud, P., Dubord, M., Dossin, O., Fracassi, F., Rannou, B., Garnier, F., Maurey-Guenec, C., Daminet, S. and Rosenberg, D. (2012), Plasma ACTH Precursors in Cats with Pituitary-Dependent Hyperadrenocorticism. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 26: 575–581. doi: 10.1111/j.1939-1676.2012.00924.x
- Issue online: 2 MAY 2012
- Version of Record online: 10 APR 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 2 MAR 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 7 FEB 2012
- Manuscript Received: 8 SEP 2011
- Intervet Pharma R & D SA
- Direction Générale de l'Enseignement et de la Recherche (Ministère de l'Agriculture et de la Pêche)
- Corticotroph tumors;
- Cushing's disease;
Diagnosis of pituitary-dependent hyperadrenocorticism (PDH) in cats is challenging because there is no specific diagnostic test.
The determination of plasma ACTH precursor (POMC and pro-ACTH) concentration might facilitate the diagnosis of PDH in cats. The aim of the study was to evaluate prospectively the plasma concentrations of ACTH precursors in a small cohort of cats with PDH and to estimate the value of this approach for diagnosis.
Four groups of cats were included: group 1 (cats with PDH), group 2 (cats with diabetes mellitus but not hyperadrenocorticism (HAC)), group 3 (cats with diabetes mellitus and confirmed acromegaly but not HAC), and group 4 (healthy cats).
PDH diagnosis was based on clinical data, low-dose dexamethasone suppression test (LDDST), and adrenal and pituitary gland computed tomography (CT) scan. For groups 2, 3, and 4, hyperadrenocorticism was excluded by LDDST or urine cortisol:creatinine ratio (UCCR). An immunoluminometric assay was used to determine plasma concentrations of ACTH precursors in the 4 groups of cats.
Group 1 contained 9 cats (enlarged pituitary gland in 7/9). Plasma ACTH precursor concentrations ranged from <53 to >1010 pmol/L with 8/9 concentrations ≥229 pmol/L. Groups 2, 3, and 4 included 13, 7, and 13 cats, respectively. Plasma ACTH precursor concentrations ranged from <53 to 96 pmol/L in group 2, <53 to 72 pmol/L in group 3, and <53 to 99 pmol/L in group 4.
Conclusion and Clinical Importance
High plasma concentration of ACTH precursors in cats (>100 pmol/L) is highly suggestive of PDH.