The abomasum is the fourth chamber in the ruminant. It functions similarly to the carnivore stomach as it is glandular and digests food chemically, rather than mechanically or by fermentation like the other 3 chambers of the ruminant stomach.
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Active transport is reliant on carrier proteins and thus follows the same rules as facilitated diffusion in that they are specific have a maximum rate and are subject to competition. Crucially they transport substances against their concentration gradient and so require energy to work.
The adrenal glands are paired bodies lying cranial to the kidneys within the retroperitoneal space. The glands consist of two layers; the cortex and medulla.
The adrenal glands are paired bodies lying cranial to the kidneys within the retroperitoneal space. The glands consist of two layers; the cortex and medulla.
Aldosterone is a steroid hormone which is secreted from the zona glomerulosa of the adrenal gland. It has a mineralocorticoid activity and is the most important regulator of plasma potassium. When plasma potassium increases, increased stimulation of aldosterone occurs directly and also as a result of the Renin-Angiotensin-Aldosterone System (RAAS). Aldosterone is also the most important regulator of sodium excretion.
The horse is a monogastric hindgut fermenter. The horse evolved for grazing and it does so for up to 17 hours a day. A high proportion of the horse's dietary carbohydrate is in the form of starch. A mature horse eats 2-2.5% of it's body weight in dry matter every day, 1.5-1.75% of this should be fibre (hay/haylage). This is to prevent a rapid drop in pH in the large intestine and also to stimulate peristalsis in the gut and prevent build up of gas.
Gives an overview of the anatomy and physiology of mammalian and avian animals' alimentary systems.
Because small mammals are prey species, they do not take to intensive conditions of surgery and hospitalisation very readily. Those that are handled very frequently by their owners are more bonded with humans and better surgical subjects as a result. Rodents and rabbits are particularly susceptible to the surgical complications of dehydration (blood and fluid loss), core temperature depression, hypovolaemic shock, ileus and renal and respiratory depression.
Analytic epidemiological studies aim to investigate and identify factors associated with the presence of disease within populations, through the investigation of factors which may vary between individual members of these populations. Details on study designs appropriate for these investigations are given elsewhere. Conceptually, this involves investigating the disease experience amongst different 'groups' of animals within an overall population, distinguished according to the factor(s) of interest. These factors can be classified as one of the components of the 'epidemiological triad' of Host, Agent and Environment, many of which are closely interrelated with each other.
The anus is the terminal portion of the alimentary tract which communicates with the external environment. Two sphincters control it's aperture. It allows faeces and gas to leave the body. Defeacation is the process where faeces are expelled from the rectum through the anus.
After emerging from the heart, the aortic artery divides into the right and left dorsal branches. Each branch feeds into a set of arches which are unique to the embryo. Most higher vertebrates have have 6 pairs of aortic arches. In the mammal the 5th pair do not form. These arches evolve to form some of the structures of the mammalian circulation. The fate of each arch varies.
Although the information on this page is based around the anatomy of the canine hindlimb, it is essentially the anatomy of the arteries in domestic species. Any major differences will be discussed on their respective pages
The peripheral nervous system found in most domestic species can be segregated into three sub-systems; the sensory system, the somatic motor system and the autonomic system. The autonomic nervous system (ANS) regulates the internal environment of the body including factors such as body temperature, blood pressure and concentrations of many substances. The ANS is also responsible for mobilising the body's resources during stressful situations. The ANS controls gland cells, cardiac muscle cells and smooth muscle cells. Control of this nervous system is involuntary and regulation is via autonomic reflexes. The autonomic reflex arc system is very similar to that of the somatic motor system, i.e. there are sensory (afferent) nerve fibres, an information integration centre, motor (efferent) fibres and effector cells. Any levels of increased activity within the autonomic nervous system can result in both stimulation or inhibition of effector cells, although it is only the efferent part of the reflex arc that is actually considered autonomic.
The intestines occupy the caudal part of the body. They contact the reproductive organs and the gizzard. The small intestine is long and relatively uniform in shape and size. There is no demarcation between the jejunum and the ileum.
So named as they were initially found in the Bursa of Fabricius, B cells produce antibodies and are associated with humoral immunity (T cells are part of the cell-mediated immune response), and are an integral part of the adaptive immune system. They represent 20-30% of circulating lymphocytes.
Basophils are derived from the same stem cell line as mast cells and while they are similar to mast cells, they are not identical (they are thought by some to be immature mast cells). They are the least common of all the leukocytes, are a similar size to neutrophils and eosinophils and are characterised by the large number of basophilic staining granules in their cytoplasm. They are present in the circulation but rarely found in tissue.
Mature B cells that undergo stimulation by an antigen undergo class switching, and differentiate into either plasma or memory cells. In the paracortex region of the lymph node binding to MHC II in the presence of IL-4 produced by the CD4+ T cells (TH2 type) causes the B cells to differentiate; most will become plasma cells, however a small number will become memory cells. Follicular dendritic cells present in the germinal centers of peripheral lymphoid organs can absorb intact antigen onto their surface to present to B cells to stimulate differentiation.
Systematic error, or 'bias' is of particular importance in any epidemiological investigation, and should be avoided wherever possible. Biases will reduce the validity of any results obtained, whether it be by overestimating or underestimating the frequency of disease in a population or the association between an exposure and disease. The forms of bias covered here can only be minimised through careful study design and execution - they cannot be accounted for in the analysis. Although confounding is considered by many authors as a form of bias, it can be accounted for during analysis, and so is covered separately.
Bile formation is an osmotic secretory process that is driven by the active concentration of bile salts in the bile canaliculi. Bile acids are produced from cholesterol and prior to being excreted from hepatocytes are bound to specific amino acids allowing them to exist as bile salts. One side of the bile salt molecule is negatively charged (hydrophilic) whilst the other is hydrophobic allowing bile salts to form micelles once a certain bile salt concentration has been reached.
Once sperm has entered the the oocyte, an ootid is formed. During early stages the ootid will contain male and female pronuclei along with the first and second polar bodies. Fusion of the male and female pronuclei will result in a single diploid nucleus or syngamy. Once syngamy has occurred, the zona pellucida then develops into an imprenetrable layer that prevents polyspermy and so polyploidy. Once the zona pellucida has developed, the ootid is now referred to as a zygote (diploid) and will begin undergoing mitotic divisions via a cleavage process that will begin to give rise to daughter cells called blastomeres. These cleavage divisions will begin to produce a 4-celled embryo and then an 8-celled embryo.
The Blood Brain Barrier refers to the mechanisms in place around the microvasculature of the brain to ensure optimal neural functioning. Endothelial cells are the structural basis of the blood brain barrier and are joined by tight cellular junctions formed by the transmembrane proteins the occludins and the claudins.
Blood cells develop in the bone marrow from a common stem cell in the process known as haematopoiesis. Once mature, cells are divided into groups that reflect their morphological and functional characteristics including the erythrocytes, or red blood cells, the granulocytes, the agranulocytes and the megakaryocytes.
This page has links to many topics centered around blood pressure: blood pressure measurement, physiology, kidney control of blood pressure, renal blood pressure, and the renin angiotensin aldosterine system
Osteogenesis is the formation of bone. Bone forms from one of three lineages; the skull forms from the neural crest; the limb skeleton forms from the lateral plate mesoderm; and the axial skeleton forms from the paraxial mesoderm (sclerotome).
Due to their size and anatomy, cattle are not very good candidates for general anaesthesia meaning that many procedures performed use local techniques. Most surgeries performed on these patients can be done standing with a small amount of sedation and regional and local nerve blocks. Local techniques are also used in cattle for procedures such as castration and dehorning. General anaesthesia is rarely carried out in these species.
The trachea bifurcates at the levels of the 4th-6th intercostal space, approximately halfway between the thoracic inlet and the diaphragm. It divides into two principle bronchi, tubes which conduct air into the lungs, and they divide into two lobar bronchi for the left lung, and into four lobar bronchi for the right lung. These further divide into smaller bronchi and bronchioles within the lung tissue.
The Bursa of Fabricus is a primary lymphoid organ found in birds. The bursa was the first place that a certain subset of lymphocytes was observed and consequently they were named B lymphocytes (bursa of Fabricius or bursa equivalent organs). The bursa is involved in the differentiation of B lymphocytes.
Development of the Central Nervous System (CNS) includes development of the brain, spinal cord, optic and auditory systems, as well as surrounding supporting cells including ependymal cells, astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and microglia. Information within this page will exclude development of the Peripheral Nervous System (PNS) which includes nerve and ganglia formation.
Blood is supplied to the brain from a ventral arterial supply in all species; from a circle of arteries called the Circle of Willis (also called the cerebral arterial circle or arterial circle of Willis) which lies ventrally to the hypothalamus where it forms a loose ring around the infundibular stalk. Although the appearance of the circle of Willis is fairly constant amongst mammals, the sources of blood supply to the circle and the direction of flow around the circle are very species specific. Blood is supplied to the brain by the internal carotid artery in dogs and horses whilst in other domestic species the main blood supply is from branches of the maxillary artery.
The cecum is a blind ending diverticulum of the large intestine and it exists at the junction of the ileum and the ascending colon. Its size and physiological importance varies between species. It is a site of microbial fermentation, absorption and transportation.
Camelids are becoming more common in general practice and so an understanding of anaesthesia techniques is becoming more important. The same techniques used in other species can be adapted and used in camelids including both local and general anaesthesia.
Camelids have a similar digestive structure to other ruminants, although camelids only have three separate stomach compartments compared to the four found in domestic species. The first element of the camelid GI tract, known as C1, can be compared to the rumen whilst the second, known as C2 can be compared to the reticulum. The final element of the tract, C3 can be compared to the abomasum. Therefore camelids do not have a structure comparable to an omasum.
The mammalian cardiovascular and respiratory systems have evolved primarily to provide the tissues of the body with oxygen and to remove carbon dioxide. The cardiorespiratory system also has metabolic and heat exchange roles.
Written nursing care plans ensure that the nurse responsible for patient care at any time during the animal's stay in the practice is confident to manage and treat the patient, to talk to the owners and give accurate updates on their animal's care, and to feel that the best possible care has been given to the animal at all times. Care plans require skill to write and this is something that improves with practise.
Each mammary complex consists of 5-20 mammary units and their corresponding ducts. The ducts open separately on the tip of the teat. Shallow grooves indicate the border between complexes. An intermammary sulcus divides the right from the left row.
The lower urinary tract is the collection of organs which convey the formed urine from the kidneys to the exterior of the body. The urine is not altered in this part of the system in species other than the horse (where mucous is added) but instead its function is to collect and store the urine until enough of it is collected for release to become necessary. This gives the animal urinary continence. Three major structures make up this tract. The ureters, the bladder and the urethra.
Also referred to as the reticuloendothelial system or mononuclear phagocytic system. It is comprised of primary lymphoid organs (bone marrow, Bursa of Fabricius, the foetal liver and the thymus) which are responsible for the production of lymphocytes, and the secondary lymphoid organs (lymph nodes, spleen and mucosal associated lymphoid tissue) which function to provide an environment where lymphocytes can react to antigen from the tissue fluid, blood and mucosal surfaces.
The musculoskeletal system includes bones, joints, cartilage, muscles, ligaments and tendons. In order to describe anatomical landmarks for example for the purposes of surgery and to be able to describe different directional information, for example when recording the view of a recently taken x-ray, it is necessary to have a way of describing the planes and axes that can be applied to the musculoskeletal system to pinpoint a specific anatomical area.
This page has links to information about pregnancy and parturation; including sperm in the female tract, fertilisation, sexual differentiation, genital development, gestation lengths in different species, maternal recognition of pregnancy, litter sizes, placenta and its endocrine function, fetal circulation, puerperium, and reproductive disorders.
The Central Nervous System (CNS) is composed of the brain and the spinal cord. This page is specifically focussed on the histologic appearance, for anatomy see Forebrain, Midbrain, Hindbrain, Cranial Nerves, Spinal Cord and CNS Development.
Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) surrounds the brain as well as the central canal of the spinal cord. It helps cushion the central nervous system (CNS), acting in a similar manner to a shock absorber. It also acts as a chemical buffer providing immunological protection and a transport system for waste products and nutrients. The CSF also provides buoyancy to the soft neural tissues which effectively allows the neural tissue to "float" in the CSF. This prevents the brain tissue from becoming deformed under its own weight. It acts as a diffusion medium for the transport of neurotransmitters and neuroendocrine substances.
The cervix can be palpated transrectally and forms a sphincter controlling access to the uterus.The anatomy of the cervical canal is adapted to suit a particular pattern of reproduction and its composition will alter under the influence of reproductive hormones. Not only does it respond to the fluctuation in oestrodiol during the oestrous cycle, but is responsive to prostaglandins and oxytocin in order to 'soften' for parturition.
It is important that all aspects of haemostasis can be independently evaluated. This will help to identify the phase affected and to pinpoint what the abnormality is. There are tests available to assess primary haemostasis, secondary haemostasis and fibrinolysis.
The colon is a site of microbial fermentation, the relative importance of this is species dependent. The colon can be divided into the following portions; Ascending, transverse and descending.
Complement is so called because it complements the function of antibody. It is a triggered enzyme cascade and there are more than 20 different proteins in the complement cascades, with most being enzymes or pro-enzymes. It can be activated by both the innate and adaptive immune systems and is one of the main innate protective mechanisms of invertebrates. Due to its destructive potential the complement system is heavily regulated but when activated it works largely by forming pore complexes as well as triggering acute inflammation and by promoting phagocytosis by macrophages and neutrophils.
The issue of confounding is of central importance in any analytic epidemiological study (as well as in those descriptive studies aiming to compare different populations), especially in the case of observational studies. Confounding results from non-random differences between the groups of animals being compared in relation to a second, 'confounding' exposure which is independently associated with both the exposure of interest (although not a consequence of this) and the outcome of interest (although not an effect of this). This results in the effect of the exposure of interest is 'mixed up' with the effect of the confounding exposure, and therefore an incorrect estimate of the true association. As such, confounding is viewed by many authors as a form of bias - however, unlike forms of selection and information bias, it is a natural feature of the data (in the case of an observational study), and techniques are available to account for it during analysis.
Different hormones, neurotransmitters and reflexes are involved in the complicated process of feeding in animals. Secretions and motility of the gastrointestinal tract are stimulated and carefully regulated by numerous factors, including environmental stimuli and the presence of food in different parts of the gastrointestinal tract from the oral cavity right through to the intestines. When a harmful substance is ingested the body acts to eliminate it in different ways to prevent the animal becoming ill, for example, through vomiting and diarrhoea. If one or more of the pathways in controlling feeding is damaged or inhibited, then problems such as obesity occurs.
Corpus Luteum is latin for "yellow body". The corpus luteum is the structure formed during luteinisation of the follicle after ovulation. The corpus luteum is, however, actually only yellow in the cow and in all other domestic species it is red. The yellow colouration of the corpus luteum is due to the pigment, lutein.
Luteinisation occurs after ovulation and the collapse of the follicle. The number of corpora lutea formed in the ovary at any one time is directly proportional to the number of oocytes ovulated. Therefore many corpora lutea will be visible on the ovary of polytocous animals. During Luteinisation there is an increase in both the size and weight due to hyperplasia (increase in cell number) and hypertrophy (increase in cell size) within the developing corpus luteum.
Cranial nerves are those nerves which arise from the brain and brain stem rather than the spinal cord. Nerves arising from the spinal cord are the peripheral nerves. There are 12 pairs of cranial nerves and these pairs of nerves passage through foramina in the skull, either individually or in groups. Cranial nerves are traditionally referred to by Roman numerals and these numerals begin cranially and run caudally.
All epidemiological investigations require some form of data description. A number of methods are available for describing data, and the most appropriate one will depend upon both the type of data available and the aims of the investigation. If these issues are not considered, useful information may be lost, or more seriously, a misleading estimate may be made.
Epidemiological investigation requires a good understanding of different data types, as this will strongly influence data analysis and interpretation. Data can broadly be classified as qualitative and quantitative, and within each of these groups, data can be further categorised as shown below. Although different grouping systems are available, it is important to consider the type of data being dealt with prior to any analysis. If desired, data can often be changed into different types through manipulation (for example, the quantitative variable weight can be converted to qualitative variables such as low/medium/high or low/not low).
Deglutition is the process of swallowing. Food is passed from the oral pharynx into the oesophageal/laryngeal pharynx whilst the epiglottis closes across the entrance of the trachea. It is an involuntary reflex preventing food from passing into the trachea and thus preventing choking and respiratory pneumonia.
Descriptive epidemiology aims to describe the distribution of disease in terms of animal, place and time, as shown below. In a purely descriptive study, no attempt is made to formally investigate reasons for the patterns of disease observed, although hypotheses regarding possible reasons will commonly be generated and developed as a result of these investigations. A description of the different types of descriptive studies is provided elsewhere.
Embryo, when applied to mammals, is the term given to the developing organism from fertilisation to birth. Developmental biology, or embryology, is the study of the embryo as it transforms from a unicellular zygote to a multicellular, mulitsystemed organism which in some cases is ready to function autonomously at birth. Developmental biology is of interest to vets in understanding why organs and systems are the way they are, but also in understanding genetic diseases and applying cell based therapies to treat loss or damage to tissues.
The Diaphragm is a dome-shaped musculotendinous sheet separating the thoracic and abdominal cavities. It is convex on its cranial surface. In the neutral position between full inspiration and full expiration, the most cranial part of the diaphragm is in line with the 6th rib.
Gases or liquids can be unevenly distributed between two areas. If one area has a higher concentration than the other then the differance between these two areas is termed the concentration gradient. The equality is then corrected by the movement of the molecules down this so called gradient from the region of high concentration to that of low. This process is passive as the molecules do not have to be forced to do this and it is reffered to as diffusion.