Changes in the intestinal mucosal cell populations of German shepherd dogs fed diets containing different protein sources. Academic Article uri icon


  • Sixteen German Shepherd Dogs from 4 litters were IgA-deficient on the basis of at least 1 of 2 serum IgA determinations, and all had small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, as documented by quantitated small intestinal bacterial culture in another study. These dogs were fed 2 diets that differed principally in their protein source (chicken vs beef, milk, and wheat). All dogs were fed each diet for 2 weeks before the study began. Next, all dogs were fed the chicken-based diet for 2 months. Then, half the dogs (group 1) were randomly assigned to continue eating the chicken-based diet, while the other half (group 2) ate a diet containing beef, milk, and wheat proteins. The small intestine was biopsied at the beginning of the study and after dogs had eaten the assigned diet for 2 and 4 months. At 2 months, group-2 dogs had more colonic mucosal mast cells, but this difference did not persist at 4 months. At the end of the study (ie, 4 months), although all dogs were clinically normal, group-2 dogs had significantly (P = 0.010) decreased numbers of jejunal villus plasma cells. However, these histologic changes were not considered clinically important. There were no significant differences in blood eosinophil counts, serum trypsin-like immunoreactivity, or cobalamin, folate, or IgA concentration. Clinical differences were not detected between the 2 groups, before or after the study. Changes were seen in serum IgM and IgG concentrations.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

published proceedings

  • Am J Vet Res

author list (cited authors)

  • Edwards, J. F., Fossum, T. W., Willard, M. D., Cohen, N. D., Patterson, W. B., & Carey, D. P.

citation count

  • 11

complete list of authors

  • Edwards, JF||Fossum, TW||Willard, MD||Cohen, ND||Patterson, WB||Carey, DP

publication date

  • March 1995