Copper toxicosis in the Bedlington terrier: a diagnostic dilemma

S Haywood, I C Fuentealba, S J Kemp, J Trafford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Diagnosis of copper toxicosis (CT) in Bedlington terriers by the quantitative and qualitative assessment of copper (Cu) in, and pathology of, biopsies has been largely superseded by a DNA-based assay which uses a microsatellite marker (C04107) linked to the CT disease allele. A retrospective study was conducted comprising 154 liver biopsies from Bedlington terriers with 22 matched DNA markers to compare the two methods in the diagnosis of CT. For the biopsy method, three categories (phenotypes) were identified based on analytical and morphological criteria: 'unaffected' in 83 samples (54 per cent), where Cu was much less than 400 microg/g, and there was an absence of visual Cu or liver damage; 'intermediate' in 18 samples (12 per cent), where Cu was less than 400 microg/g, and there was limited histochemical Cu and no/equivocal damage; and 'affected' in 53 samples (34 per cent), where Cu was greater than 400 microg/g, there was histochemical Cu and liver damage was poorly related to Cu content. In the DNA assay, which was used alone on unrelated individuals, the microsatellite marker failed to identify the CT status of any of the groups. Liver biopsy remains a reliable indicator of Cu accumulation and progressive liver disease in individual dogs. The microsatellite marker C04107 has a predictive value only when supported by a pedigree.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-5
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Small Animal Practice
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2001

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Animals
  • Biopsy
  • Copper
  • DNA
  • Dog Diseases
  • Dogs
  • Female
  • Genetic Markers
  • Genotype
  • Liver
  • Liver Diseases
  • Male
  • Microsatellite Repeats
  • Phenotype
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Retrospective Studies


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