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Folia Morphol (Warsz). 2018 Jul 16. doi: 10.5603/FM.a2018.0054. [Epub ahead of print]

Morphological characterization of the coronary arteries in African sheep (Ovis orientalis). Differential analysis with those of humans and other animal species.

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Universidad Industrial de Santander, Bucaramanga, Colombia, Colombia.



Despite the importance of the coronary system in the African sheep as an possible experimental model, there is little information about this particular anatomical. The objective of this investigation was to characterize morphologically the coronary arteries and their branches in African sheep.


This descriptive cross-sectional study evaluated the coronary arteries and their branches of 62 hearts of short hair sheep. The right and left coronary ostia were perfused with a semi-synthetic resin (Palatal GP40L 85%; styrene 15%) dyed with mineral red. The morphological characteristics were evaluated using a digital calibrator and the biometrics of the coronary arteries and their branches were registered.


The right coronary artery had a proximal caliber of 2.11±0.46 mm. The subsinusal interventricular branch ended at the middle third of the homonym sulcus in 19 specimens (30.6%).The left coronary artery had a diameter of 5.38±1.59 mm and a length of 4.67±3.32 mm. This artery bifurcated itself in the paraconal interventricular branch and the left circumflex branch in 57 hearts (91.9%) and trifurcated with an additional left diagonal branch in five specimens (8.1%). Left coronary artery dominance was observed in 51 specimens (82.3%), whereas in 11 cases (17.7%) the coronary circulation dominance was balanced.


Due to the similitude in the features of the coronary arteries between African sheep and humans, this animal model can be proposed for procedural and hemodynamic activities.


coronary artery disease; dominance; heart; sheep

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