Investigation of two different human d-dimer assays in the horse

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D-dimer has value as a marker of thrombosis in critically ill horses and can provide additional information about prognosis. However, there are currently no equine species-specific d-dimer assays available, nor has there been any formal investigation of the applicability of human d-dimer assays in horses, so it is unknown, which assay performs best in this species. The aim of this study was therefore to evaluate and compare two human d-dimer assays for their applicability in horses.

The study included four groups of horses: clinically healthy horses, horses with gastrointestinal (GI) disease and mild systemic inflammation based on low serum amyloid A (SAA) (low SAA group), horses with GI disease and strong systemic inflammation based on high SAA (high SAA group) and, horses with thrombotic GI disease caused by Strongylus vulgaris (also called non-strangulating intestinal infarction (NSII)) (NSII group). The assays evaluated were the STAGO STA-Liatest D-di + (Stago) and NycoCard™ D-dimer (NycoCard). Intra- and inter-coefficients of variation (CV) were assessed on two d-dimer concentrations, and linearity under dilution was evaluated. A group comparison was performed for both assays across the four groups of horses. A Spaghetti plot, Spearman Correlation, Passing Bablok regression and Bland–Altman plot were used to compare methods in terms of agreement.

Ten horses were included in the clinically healthy group, eight in the low SAA group, eight in the high SAA group, and seven in the NSII group. For the Stago assay, intra- and inter-CVs were below the accepted level except for one inter-CV. The NycoCard assay did not meet the accepted level for any of the CVs. The linearity under dilution was acceptable for both the Stago and NycoCard. In the group comparison, both methods detected a significantly higher d-dimer concentration in the high SAA and NSII groups compared to the clinically healthy group. Method agreement showed slightly higher d-dimer concentrations with NycoCard compared to Stago. The overall agreement was stronger for the lower d-dimer concentrations.

Both the Stago and the NycoCard were found to be applicable for use in horses but were not directly comparable.
Original languageEnglish
Article number227
JournalBMC Veterinary Research
Publication statusPublished - 2022

    Research areas

  • Fibrin degradation products, Equine, Hemostasis, Hypercoagulation, Thrombosis, Validation

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