Serum trypsin‐like immunoreactivity in dogs with diabetes mellitus



Concurrent exocrine pancreatic dysfunction and decreased pancreatic organ size are common findings in various stages of human type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM). Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI) is incompletely described in diabetic dogs.


To compare canine trypsin-like immunoreactivity (cTLI) of diabetic dogs with that of healthy controls. A secondary aim was to evaluate the correlation between duration of DM and cTLI.


Thirty client-owned diabetic dogs and thirty client-owned control dogs.


Cross-sectional study. Diabetic and healthy control dogs were included if they had no clinical evidence of pancreatitis and if serum samples obtained after food was withheld were available. Serum cTLI was measured at a reference laboratory and compared between groups. Canine pancreatic lipase immunoreactivity (cPLI) was analyzed concurrently as an indicator of pancreatitis.


The median cTLI concentration in all diabetic dogs (36.4 μg/L [range, 7.0-288 μg/L]) did not differ from control dogs (28.7 μg/L [range, 12.8-58.6 μg/L]) (P = .07; difference −7.8 μg/L [95% Confidence Interval (CI), −23.5 to 0.6 μg/L]). There was still no difference in cTLI between groups after exclusion of dogs with cPLI consistent with pancreatitis (n = 8 diabetic dogs). There was no correlation between cTLI and DM duration in all diabetic dogs (r = −0.07, [95% CI, −0.43 to 0.3], P = .7).

Conclusions and Clinical Importance

There was no evidence of EPI as evaluated using cTLI in this cohort of diabetic dogs, but concurrent increases in cPLI suggest cTLI might not be the optimal indicator of exocrine pancreatic dysfunction in dogs with DM.

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