Automated Spectrophotometric Assays for the Measurement of Ammonia and Bicarbonate in Saliva of Horses: Analytical Validation and Changes in Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome (EGUS)

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  • Alberto Muñoz-Prieto
  • Eva Llamas-Amor
  • María Dolores Contreras-Aguilar
  • Ignacio Ayala
  • María Martín Cuervo
  • José Joaquín Cerón
  • Hansen, Sanni

Ammonia (NH3) and bicarbonate (HCO3) have been related to gastric ulcers in humans. Ammonia is considered a possible cause of gastric ulcers, whereas bicarbonate has a protective function. The presence of ulcers in the stomach of horses is defined as Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome (EGUS), which is a frequent disease in this species, and it has been associated with changes in saliva composition, such as in analytes related to inflammation, immune system and oxidative stress. The objectives of this study were (1) to perform an analytical validation of two automated spectrophotometric assays, one for ammonia and one for bicarbonate, in the horses’ saliva and (2) to evaluate their possible variations with EGUS. Analytical validation of the automated assays for ammonia and bicarbonate in the saliva of horses showed that both assays were precise and accurate. In addition, significantly higher values of ammonia and lower values of bicarbonate were found in the saliva of horses with EGUS compared to healthy horses. It can be concluded that ammonia and bicarbonate can be measured in the saliva of horses and that ammonia increases and bicarbonate decreases in this sample type could be related to the presence of EGUS in this species.

Original languageEnglish
Article number147
Issue number3
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2024

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© 2024 by the authors.

    Research areas

  • ammonia, bicarbonate, EGUS, horses, saliva

ID: 389411854