Nicholas Bexfield BVetMed DSAM DipECVIM-CA MRCVS

European Specialist and RCVS Diplomate in Small Animal Medicine
Wellcome Trust Research Training Fellow

27 July 2009

Study on canine chronic hepatitis

Dear Sir

We are currently undertaking a study to investigate the aetiology of canine chronic hepatitis. As colleagues will be aware, this is a very frustrating condition to treat in many dogs as the aetiology is usually unknown. Finding a cause could have a major impact on prevention and treatment of the disease. We believe at least some cases may be caused by an as yet unidentified virus, and that some dogs may have an increased genetic susceptibility.

Our initial studies have been encouraging; however, we need more case material to allow us to progress. Therefore, we would be very grateful if veterinary practitioners could provide us with any excess EDTA blood and serum that has already been taken for diagnostic purposes from such patients with informed owner consent. We would also be interested in hearing from practitioners who have cases of suspected canine chronic hepatitis and we are happy to provide free advice on management of such cases in return.

We would be grateful if samples could be sent to the address below. Please separate serum from red cells before sending, and if possible send a copy of the histopathology report and the dog’s pedigree or Kennel Club name and number. We are also happy to accept samples from unregistered and crossbred dogs. Further information and information for owners and consent forms can be obtained by contacting Nick Bexfield, e-mail:, or Penny Watson, e-mail: .

Nick Bexfield, Penny Watson,
Department of Veterinary Medicine,
University of Cambridge, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0ES