Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
. 2018 Mar 26;7:374.
doi: 10.12688/f1000research.14153.1. eCollection 2018.

Preliminary Evidence That Hydrostatic Edema May Contribute to the Formation of Diffuse Alveolar Damage in a Holstein Calf Model

Free PMC article

Preliminary Evidence That Hydrostatic Edema May Contribute to the Formation of Diffuse Alveolar Damage in a Holstein Calf Model

Joseph M Neary et al. F1000Res. .
Free PMC article


Background: Two notable findings of clinically healthy feedlot cattle suggest they may have pulmonary hydrostatic edema during the finishing phase of production: increased pulmonary arterial wedge pressures and pulmonary venous hypertrophy. The goal of this study was to determine if increased pulmonary arterial wedge pressure (PAWP) in a Holstein calf could lead to diffuse alveolar damage consistent with the early, exudative phase of acute interstitial pneumonia of feedlot cattle. Methods: Six male Holstein dairy calves were given daily subcutaneous injections of the nonspecific ß-adrenergic agonist isoprenaline (10 mg/kg/d), to induce left ventricular diastolic dysfunction, or sterile water for 14 days. On Day 14, pulmonary arterial pressures and wedge pressures were measured, echocardiography performed, and the ratio of mitral valve flow velocity (E) to septal lengthening velocity (e') calculated. Calves were euthanized on Day 15 and lung lesions semi-quantitatively scored. Results: Mean PAWP was 12 ± 1 mm Hg in calves that received isoprenaline and 7 ± 1 mm Hg in controls ( P = 0.01). Calves that received isoprenaline tended to have greater relative wall thickness than control calves ( P = 0.15) and greater E/e' ratios ( P = 0.16), suggestive of concentric hypertrophy and diastolic dysfunction, respectively. Calves that received isoprenaline also tended to have a left ventricle and interventricular septum that was 29 ± 10 g heavier than control calves ( P = 0.10) when controlling for body mass. Hyaline membranes, the hallmark feature of diffuse alveolar damage, were evident in lung sections from all calves that received isoprenaline but none of the controls. Conclusions: Consistent with prior pathological and physiological studies of feedlot cattle, this study provides preliminary evidence that cattle presenting with clinical signs and pathology consistent with early stage acute interstitial pneumonia could be attributable to hydrostatic edema associated with left ventricular failure.

Keywords: acute respiratory distress syndrome; congestive heart failure; hypertension; left ventricle; pneumonia.

Conflict of interest statement

No competing interests were disclosed.


Figure 1.
Figure 1.. Lungs and pulmonary histology of male intact Holstein calves after 14 days of receiving the nonspecific ß-adrenergic agonist isoprenaline (10 mg/kg/d sid) (Calf 2) or equivalent volume of sterile water (0.2 mL/kg) (Calf 3).
Masson’s trichrome. Scale bar = 0.25 mm.

Similar articles

See all similar articles


    1. Neary JM, Booker CW, Wildman BK, et al. : Right-Sided Congestive Heart Failure in North American Feedlot Cattle. J Vet Intern Med. 2016;30(1):326–334. 10.1111/jvim.13789 - DOI - PMC - PubMed
    1. Loneragan GH, Gould DH, Mason GL, et al. : Involvement of microbial respiratory pathogens in acute interstitial pneumonia in feedlot cattle. Am J Vet Res. 2001;62(10):1519–1524. 10.2460/ajvr.2001.62.1519 - DOI - PubMed
    1. ARDS Definition Task Force, . Ranieri VM, Rubenfeld GD, et al. : Acute respiratory distress syndrome: the Berlin Definition. JAMA. 2012;307(23):2526–2533. 10.1001/jama.2012.5669 - DOI - PubMed
    1. Wilkins PA, Otto CM, Baumgardner JE, et al. : Acute lung injury and acute respiratory distress syndromes in veterinary medicine: consensus definitions: The Dorothy Russell Havemeyer Working Group on ALI and ARDS in Veterinary Medicine. J Vet Emerg Crit Care. 2007;17(4):333–339. 10.1111/j.1476-4431.2007.00238.x - DOI
    1. Woolums AR: Feedlot Acute Interstitial Pneumonia. Vet Clin North Am Food Anim Pract. 2015;31(3):381–9, vi. 10.1016/j.cvfa.2015.05.010 - DOI - PubMed

MeSH terms

Grant support

The author(s) declared that no grants were involved in supporting this work.