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Vitamin B12 Deficiency in Cats

Barron, P. M., J. T. Mackie, et al. (2009). “Serum cobalamin concentrations in healthy cats and cats with non-alimentary tract illness in Australia.” Aust Vet J 87(7): 280-283.

The objective of this study was to determine a reference range for serum cobalamin (vitamin B12) concentration in healthy cats in Australia and prospectively investigate the prevalence of hypocobalaminemia in cats with non-alimentary tract disease. Blood samples were collected from 50 healthy cats and 47 cats with non-alimentary tract illness, and serum blood cobalamin concentrations were determined for each group. Cobalamin is a cofactor for several mammalian enzymatic reactions necessary for normal cellular function. Cats with low cobalamin levels have significant metabolic disturbances and clinical research into feline hypocobalaminemia has mostly involved cats with gastrointestinal disease. The reference range in the 50 clinically healthy cats was 345 to 3668 pb/mL. The median serum cobalamin concentration in the 47 cats with non-alimentary tract illness was not significantly different than the median concentration in the healthy cat group. The results indicate that hypocobalaminemia is uncommon in sick cats with non-alimentary tract illness in Australia, though its occurrence in this study still warrants further investigation. [VT]
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Related articles:
Ibarrola, P., L. Blackwood, et al. (2005). “Hypocobalaminaemia is uncommon in cats in the United Kingdom.” J Fel Med Surg 7(6): 341-348.
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Ruaux, C., J. Steiner, et al. (2005). “Early biochemical and clinical responses to cobalamin supplementation in cats with signs of gastrointestinal disease and severe hypocobalaminemia.” J Vet Intern Med 19(2): 155-160.
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