Current Clinical Trials

Rapamycin: Evaluation of Effectiveness in Renal Senescence

Evidence exists to suggest that aging of the kidney may contribute to the. onset and progression of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Rapamycin is a drug that is a known modulator of the aging process and additionally may decrease the formation of fibrosis (scarring) in the kidney. A feline formulation of the drug is available and the purpose of this study is to assess the potential benefit of the drug in cats with CKD.

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Effect of Porus One on Reducing Uremic Toxins in Cats with Naturally Occurring CKD

Uremic toxins are substances that build up in the body due to decreased removal by the kidney. They are increased in patients with CKD and correlate to severity of disease. Indoxyl sulfate is one of the most studied uremic toxins and comes from byproducts of protein metabolism in the gut. It is thought to contribute to progression of CKD including increasing fibrosis and inflammation in the kidney as well as affecting other body systems such as the heart, bones, and muscle. Porus One (Renaltec) is a new patented pure carbon product that acts as an adsorbent of the protein byproduct so that it cannot be absorbed and converted into indoxyl sulfate. Instead, it is excreted in the feces. Porus One has been shown to decrease indoxyl sulfate in normal geriatric cats. The purpose of this study is to assess its effect in cats with CKD.

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Efficacy of Potassium Citrate as a Treatment for Metabolic Acidosis in Cats with Chronic Kidney Disease

Hypokalemia (low potassium levels in the blood) and metabolic acidosis (high amount of acid in the body) are two very important consequences of chronic kidney disease (CKD), leading to worsened clinical signs at home. Metabolic acidosis plays a role in progression of CKD and its treatment has been shown to improve long-term outcome in human patients with CKD. However, the treatment of metabolic acidosis in cats with CKD remains a challenge, with very few safe and effective options available. Potassium citrate is a medication normally used to supplement potassium that also has alkalinizing properties which allow it to correct metabolic acidosis with minimal side effects. However, there is very little information available in veterinary medicine regarding the efficacy of potassium citrate as a treatment for metabolic acidosis. Therefore, the purpose of this study to evaluate whether potassium citrate can effectively correct metabolic acidosis in cats with chronic kidney disease in comparison to a non-alkalinizing form of potassium supplementation.

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Quantifying defecation frequency between cats with and without chronic kidney disease

Now enrolling!

Constipation is a common clinical manifestation seen in cats with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Previous retrospective and survey studies were helpful in finding an association between CKD and decreased defecation frequency, but this association could be greatly strengthened if we had a more accurate mode of data collection. For this study, Petivity litterbox monitors will be used to collect accurate real-time defecation data which addresses the limitations of previous studies. The purpose of this study is to quantifiably measure defecation frequency in cats with and without CKD with the Petivity litterbox monitor ( to further assess the associations found in previous studies. This study is important because the Petivity monitors will allow for defecation events to be more accurately quantifiable which will allow future studies to look more closely at the possible causes for decreased defecation frequency in CKD cats and how we can address those causes to prevent constipation.

If you choose to enroll your cat in the study, it will entail:

  • Your cat will be seen for one time to the VMC for screening bloodwork, urinalysis, blood pressure and exam (covered by the study)
  • Signing the owner consent form and picking up Petivity monitor(s)
  • Setting up the Petivity litterbox monitor(s) and using the Petivity app to collect litter box data for 30 days
  • Weekly screenshots from the Petivity app sent to the summer research vet student
  • Returning the Petivity monitor(s) at the end of the study

Hormonal Regulation of Appetite in Cats with and without Chronic Kidney Disease

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a common and progressive condition in cats that can eventually result in a decreased appetite. This loss of appetite is a significant contribution to illness in these patients and can become a concern related to quality of life. In humans with CKD decreased appetite can occur due to dysregulation and imbalance in the hormones that control appetite. The purpose of our study is to investigate whether cats with CKD have altered concentrations and ratios of the hormones that control appetite. The long-term goal is to acquire information that can be used to help tailor treatment strategies for cats with CKD.

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Assessment of the Effects of Gabapentin on Blood Pressure in Cats with and without Chronic Kidney Disease

Enrollment has closed for this study.

Stress associated with transportation, examination and diagnostic procedures is a major barrier to the feline patient’s capacity to receive regular veterinary care. Recently gabapentin has become popular as a medication prescribed to reduce stress and improve compliance during veterinary visits. In cats, anecdotal experience indicates that appropriate doses of gabapentin calm the CKD patient but may result in a lower blood pressure than without the medication. Taken together, it is necessary to explore the pharmacodynamics of the anti-anxiety dose of gabapentin in feline CKD so that these patients can safely benefit from its use. Therefore the purpose of this study is to demonstrate the effects of an anti-anxiety dose of gabapentin on blood pressure in CKD cats. A normal cat group will also be enrolled as a comparator to determine if this effect is exacerbated in CKD as a recent study reported no effect on BP in normal cats. A better understanding of this phenomenon will inform the use of this medication to palliate the stress of CKD cats during veterinary visit and determine to what effect blood pressure measurements are affected.

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