Proof-of-concept study: Evaluation of plasma and urinary electrolytes as markers of response to L-asparaginase therapy in dogs with high-grade lymphoma


Vet Clin Pathol. 2020 Sep 21. doi: 10.1111/vcp.12893. Online ahead of print.


Response to chemotherapy is one of the most important prognostic factors in dogs with lymphoma. The objective of this feasibility study was to evaluate if clinical responses to a specific cytotoxic agent (L-asparaginase) could be anticipated by measuring analyte concentrations in plasma and urine concentrations of lymphoma-bearing dogs. We hypothesized that potassium and phosphate concentrations in plasma and urine would be higher in dogs that completely responded to therapy. Plasma and urine

samples of dogs with lymphoma were obtained before 12 and 24 hours after intramuscular L-asparaginase injections. Peripheral lymph node volumes were evaluated according to the Veterinary Cooperative Oncology Group standardized criteria. Plasma and urine electrolyte, calcium, phosphate, creatinine, urea, total protein, and albumin concentrations were measured, and the fractional excretions of each electrolyte were calculated. Statistical analyses compared complete vs partial responders using a linear regression model. Contrast analyses were also performed to differentiate the mean of each group, with adjustments made with the Benjamini-Hochberg procedure. Fourteen dogs were included, eight with complete responses, and six with partial responses. Plasma phosphate concentrations were significantly higher at 12 hours (P = .0003) and 24 hours (P = .009) after complete responses to therapy. This study demonstrates the potential use of plasma and urine analyte monitoring after chemotherapy induction. Plasma phosphate measurements represent a potential indicator of early responses to L-asparaginase therapy. Larger population studies are warranted to confirm these preliminary results.