Calcium oxalate urolithiasis is a common and painful condition in people. The pathogenesis of this disease is complex and poorly understood. Laboratory animal and in vitro studies have demonstrated an effect of multiple trace metals in the crystallization process, and studies in humans have reported relationships between urinary metal concentrations and stone risk. Dogs are a spontaneous model of calcium oxalate urolithiasis, and the metal content of canine calcium oxalate stones mirrors that of human stones. The aim of this study was to test for a relationship between urinary metals and calcium oxalate urolithiasis in dogs. We hypothesized that urinary metals would differ between dogs with and without calcium oxalate urolithiasis. Urine from 122 dogs (71 cases and 51 stone-free controls) was analyzed for calcium and 12 other metals. The cases had higher urinary calcium, copper, iron, and vanadium and lower urinary cobalt. Higher urinary vanadium in the cases was associated with being fed a therapeutic stone-prevention diet. Urinary calcium had a strong positive correlation with strontium and moderate positive correlations with chromium, nickel, and zinc. The results of this study complement the findings of similar human studies and suggest a potential role of trace metals in calcium oxalate urolithiasis. Further investigation into how trace metals may affect stone formation is warranted.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This research was supported by a Nestle Purina Veterinary Resident Research Grant (771371) and a Morris Animal Foundation grant (D12CA-031). Partial funding for E.F. was provided by the Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health (NIH) under award number K01OD019912.