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Vet Surg. 2014 Mar;43(3):289-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-950X.2014.12144.x. Epub 2014 Jan 27.

Evaluation of serum phosphorylated neurofilament subunit NF-H as a prognostic biomarker in dogs with thoracolumbar intervertebral disc herniation.

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Nakayama Veterinary Hospital, Nara, Japan; Department of Advanced Pathobiology, Graduate School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Osaka Prefecture University, Osaka, Japan.



To investigate whether pNF-H is a prognostic biomarker of spinal cord injury (SCI) in paraplegic dogs with thoracolumbar intervertebral disc herniation (IVDH).


Prospective, case-control clinical study


Dogs (n = 60) with SCI from IVDH and 6 healthy dogs.


Serum from 60 thoracolumbar IVDH dogs (Grade 4: 22 dogs; Grade 5: 38 dogs) collected 1-3 days after injury, and 6 control dogs, was analyzed using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) against a phosphorylated form of the high-molecular-weight neurofilament subunit NF-H (pNF-H). Serum pNF-H levels were compared between different IVDH grades and their prognostic value was investigated.


pNF-H levels were significantly greater in Grade 5 than Grade 4 dogs. There were significant differences in pNF-H levels between dogs that regained voluntarily ambulation and those that did not. All 8 dogs that had high pNF-H levels 1-3 days after injury did not regain the ability to walk after surgery.


Serum pNF-H levels might be a biomarker for predicting prognosis of canine SCI.

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