Stiftung Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover (TiHo)TiHo eLib

Tissue S100/calgranulin expression and blood neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) in dogs with lower urinary tract urothelial carcinoma


Urothelial carcinoma (UC) is the most common neoplasm of the canine lower urinary tract, affecting approximately 2% of dogs. Elderly female patients of certain breeds are predisposed, and clinical signs of UC can easily be confused with urinary tract infection or urolithiasis. Diagnosis and treatment are challenging given the lack of disease-specific markers and treatments. The S100A8/A9 complex and S100A12 protein are Ca2+-binding proteins expressed by cells of the innate immune system and have shown promise as urinary screening markers for UC. The neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) can also aid in distinguishing certain neoplastic from inflammatory conditions. Our study aimed to evaluate the tissue expression of S100/calgranulins and the blood NLR in dogs with UC. Urinary bladder and/or urethral tissue samples from dogs with UC (n = 10), non-neoplastic inflammatory lesions (NNUTD; n = 6), and no histologic changes (n = 11) were evaluated using immunohistochemistry. Blood NLRs were analyzed in dogs with UC (n = 22) or NNUTD (n = 26).


Tissue S100A12-positive cell counts were significantly higher in dogs with lower urinary tract disease than healthy controls (P = 0.0267 for UC, P = 0.0049 for NNUTD), with no significant difference between UC and NNUTD patients. Tissue S100A8/A9-positivity appeared to be higher with NNUTD than UC, but this difference did not reach statistical significance. The S100A8/A9+-to-S100A12+ ratio was significantly decreased in neoplastic and inflamed lower urinary tract tissue compared to histologically normal specimens (P = 0.0062 for UC, P = 0.0030 for NNUTD). NLRs were significantly higher in dogs with UC than in dogs with NNUTD, and a cut-off NLR of ≤ 2.83 distinguished UC from NNUTD with 41% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Higher NLRs were also associated with a poor overall survival time (P = 0.0417).


These results confirm that the S100/calgranulins play a role in the immune response to inflammatory and neoplastic lower urinary tract diseases in dogs, but the tissue expression of these proteins appears to differ from their concentrations reported in urine samples. Further investigations of the S100/calgranulin pathways in UC and their potential as diagnostic or prognostic tools and potential therapeutic targets are warranted. The NLR as a routinely available marker might be a useful surrogate to distinguish UC from inflammatory conditions.


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