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Ann Anat. 2001 May;183(3):283-91.

Age-related changes in the ventricular system of the dog brain.

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Departamento de Anatomía A. P. Comparadas, Facultad de Veterinaria, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, Spain.


The cerebral ventricles represent cavities of the brain which are used for diagnostic purposes. Although a wide variety of age related changes have been described in the Central Nervous System (CNS) of many species, few studies about the effect of ageing on the canine brain have been published until now. However, to date there is no previous data concerning the ventricular system of dogs. The present study deals with the morphometry of the various parts of the cerebral cavities of the German Shepherd dog by means of Batson's casts and the possible changes which take place in the ventricular system with age and/or sex. In this study, two age groups were considered: young (2-5 years) and old (10-12 years). A total number of forty seven dogs (12 young males, 13 old males, 13 young females and 9 old females), weighing 34-42 kg, were used for experimentation. Our results describe the enlargement which takes place in the ventricular system with age, which is probably related to a general age-related atrophy of neural tissue. On the contrary, there are no remarkable changes related to sex. These age-related changes are similar to the best known changes which occur in the human species. Our data could corroborate the usefulness of the dog as a natural animal model for the study of normal ageing and neurodegenerative diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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