Expression and bioactivity of recombinant canine erythropoietin

James N. MacLeod, Jonathan W. Tetreault, Kellie A.S. Lorschy, Da Nian Gu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Objective - To produce recombinant canine erythropoietin (rcEPO) and compare its biological activity with that of recombinant human EPO (rhEPO). Animals - C57BL/6J mice. Procedure - The gene encoding cEPO was isolated from a genomic library and subcloned into an eucaryotic expression vector. Production of rcEPO was achieved by stable transfection of the expression construct into Chinese hamster ovary cells. Biological activity was evaluated in vitro by analyzing the mitogenic activity of rcEPO on murine erythroid progenitor cells. In vivo bioactivity was assessed in mice by measuring the ability of rcEPO to increase blood reticulocyte counts. Results - Size and glycosylation of rcEPO expressed in Chinese hamster ovary cells were similar to values for commercial rhEPO. Canine and human EPO stimulated proliferation of murine erythroid progenitor cells in vitro and murine reticulocytosis in vivo in a dose-dependent manner. Conclusions - Comparable biological activity was observed for rcEPO and rhEPO in the 2 murine-based assay systems studied. By avoiding interspecies variation in protein structure and the resulting potential for immunogenicity, rcEPO should represent a better option than rhEPO for treatment of dogs with erythropoietin-dependent anemia. Clinical Relevance - Therapeutic use of rhEPO in companion animals is limited by its immunogenicity and the resulting potential to induce pure red cell aplasia. Development and availability of species-specific EPO preparations should avoid this problem.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1144-1148
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Veterinary Research
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Veterinary


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