Clinical Trials

At AURA, we are committed to the discovery of improved treatments or diagnostic strategies. We need your help with some of the studies detailed on this page.

Clinical Trials

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At AURA, we are keen to reduce the incidence of post-anaesthetic nausea, regurgitation and vomiting. While the incidence of these complications is relatively low (about 7%), they can delay recovery for the affected patient, and prolong the period of time spent in hospital. We have undertaken 2 major audits of our post-operative regurgitation rates in the last 5 years. As our anaesthesia team continue to adjust drug protocols in an attempt to reduce the incidence of this event, we need to know if these efforts are having the desired effect. There are no additional blood tests or examinations performed as part of this audit. Our research student collects all of the necessary information from the medical record. In some instances, the patient’s carer may be phoned for some followup information.
Poor management of severe adverse events (sAEs) during chemotherapy can impair dogs’ quality of life and be life-threatening. Owner-perceived quality of life (QoL) is one of the most important determinants of decision-making in veterinary oncology, and measuring this construct and its components in small animals has become the focus of several recently developed QoL questionnaires. However, to date, these instruments have primarily been designed as data collection tools for research purposes rather than for routine symptom-monitoring.
Cancer is a leading cause of death in older dogs. Chemotherapy prolongs survival in pet dogs with a variety of cancers. A primary concern for all pet owners contemplating chemotherapy is whether their pets’ quality of life will be diminished by the adverse effects related to treatment. Response to chemotherapy is variable and unfortunately adverse effects affect 30–40% of patients treated with chemotherapy. Therefore the ‘standard’ doses of chemotherapy are less than ideal for some dogs and more than tolerable for others. With our current tools, it is not always easy to determine the best dose for an individual dog before starting the treatment, and doses are typically adapted along the course of the chemotherapy protocol.
Diarrhoea is one of the most common side effects of chemotherapy in dogs, and can significantly impact the quality of life of dogs undergoing chemotherapy treatments. Based on our previous research, it is estimated that about 30-40% of dogs receiving vincristine or doxorubicin will develop diarrhoea. In humans, it has been found that gut bacteria can re-activate chemotherapy drugs, inducing gastrointestinal damage and consequently diarrhoea. Recent data suggest that aspartame, an artificial sweetener, appears to be promising in preventing gut bacteria to reactivate chemotherapy drugs.