Dr Chavaunne Thorpe, Dr Isabel Orriss and Dr Richard Meeson have been awarded a grant from the Petplan Charitable Trust to investigate the mechanisms leading to degeneration and calcification in the dog Achilles tendon.
Tendon calcification is characterized by formation of calcific deposits within tendon and is a common feature of tendon degeneration in dogs. Tendon calcification results in pain and dysfunction, particularly affecting the Achilles tendons in middle-aged, large breed dogs. Little is known regarding the causes of the disease and treatment options are limited, often resulting in prolonged symptoms which do not resolve. In this project, we will investigate the mechanisms leading to calcification in cells obtained from the canine Achilles tendon. These results will provide a basis for future studies to investigate the effects of potential therapeutics for treating calcification associated with tendon degeneration in dogs and other species.
Figure: Radiograph demonstrating the presence of calcific deposits within the Achilles tendon of a dog presenting with Achilles tendon degeneration