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Prolonged Physical Stress on Camel Induces Metabolic Damage and Blood Gas Alteration

The article published in the Asian Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances by Magdy, Enas, Mohamed Abdo Rizk, and Mohamed El-Adl presented that camel racing events influence the blood gas hemato-biochemical components alteration. Metabolic acidosis and alteration of hemato-biochemical parameters were distinctly established in the study.

Camel is a domestic animal found mainly in a semi-arid area, used for multiple purposes due to the capability to withstand the long duration of thirst and hunger in the most inhospitable ecological conditions. Camel racing is commonly practiced for entertainment purposes and tourism; however, limited evidence was gathered to assess these events’ impact on animal’s metabolism.

The team used an exercise approach to assess the physiological alteration under stress by measuring blood gas analysis and acid-base balance. During the exercise, the cardiovascular system’s change modified the oxygen transfer and clearance of the metabolites from the muscles. Enas reported,“ an evident connection was observed between exercise and alteration in oxygen saturation and blood gas parameters; hence, the stress developed during the racing produced metabolic acidosis.”

Moreover, the team pointed out “ raised levels of cortisol were observed in the racing camels indicating the activation of the sympathetic nervous system and  the  hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal  axis to enhance oxygen supply to the working muscles.”  Many researchers consider Creatine kinase (CK) activity in the blood to be a reliable indicator for muscular damage under stress. Thus, recorded low glucose levels and high CK in the blood indicated an increased risk for muscular damage in camel after racing due to an insignificant glucose reserve to support muscle functioning under stress.

The study establishes a baseline for identifying a correlation between blood gas components and hemato-biochemical variables in racing camels under stress.

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