The Endocrinology Laboratory is a section within the Animal Health Diagnostic Center (AHDC). The lab provides routine Clinical Testing Services for veterinarians and scientists to improve the health of companion, food and fiber-producing, sporting, wildlife, zoo, and laboratory animals. A broad range of endocrine tests are performed using validated immunoassay technologies and methods including radioimmunoassay, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and chemiluminescent immunoassay.
In addition, the lab supports researchers at Cornell and in universities throughout the world with our Research Testing Service. This immunoassay service and expertise is also used by toxicological and other contract testing laboratories in the pharmaceutical and life science industries. The quality assurance program initially established in the laboratory used GLP regulations (21 CFR part 58) as guidelines to maintain quality and ensure integrity of the results.
The laboratory now follows the quality assurance program established within the AHDC, which meets the requirements for accreditation by the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians (AAVLD). The Endocrinology Lab is certified by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) to provide testing for the Canine Thyroid Registry. The laboratory participates in proficiency testing administered by the Society for Comparative Endocrinology and Veterinary Laboratories of America.
Our staff also provides education and consultation to veterinarians, visiting researchers, and students. The laboratory is a self-sufficient service and research unit within the AHDC and College of Veterinary Medicine, deriving financial support from testing fees, contracts, and research grants.
We provide accurate, reliable, and equitably priced testing for many hormones and vitamins in a broad array of species (primarily canine, equine, feline, and bovine but some exotics as well). Our veterinarians and technical staff offer pre-testing advice and free consultations on post-testing results. The lab is certified by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) to provide testing for the Canine Thyroid Registry.
The condition and quality of the specimen we receive plays a major factor in the accuracy of test results. Please do not send whole blood. Serum is the preferred sample type for the majority of the endocrine tests we offer, with the exception of ACTH, which requires EDTA plasma. Please review the links for:
or feel free to contact the laboratory directly with any specific questions (607) 253-3673.
Results Reporting and Consultations
Contact the Endocrinology Laboratory directly at (607) 253-3673 regarding any test results, interpretations, or sample discrepancies. Veterinarians or the authorized submitter should have their AHDC account number ready when making inquiries about samples that have already been sent and tested. Consultations by veterinarians and qualified staff are also provided at no charge for testing done within our laboratory. We prefer not to interpret test results from other laboratories since we will not be familiar with their test methods. The laboratory offers gratis re-testing of samples on a limited basis after consultation, assuming residual sample volume and quality are adequate for re-testing. Please contact the Endocrinology Laboratory director at (607) 253-3796 or manager at (607) 253-3593 if you are experiencing unusual delays with lab results.
Tests & Protocols
Below you will find test information and protocols arranged by species, Canine, Equine and Feline. The information within each species is categorized by Adrenal, Metabolic, Reproductive and Thyroid testing.
Canine Adrenal Function Tests: protocols for the ACTH-Response Test, Low-Dose and High-Dose Dexamethasone-Suppression Tests and information about measuring endogenous ACTH.
Canine Metabolic Tests: information for measuring Vitamin B12, Folate and TLI (Trypsin-Like Immunoreactivity) in dogs for characterizing some malabsorptive disorders, pancreatitis, etc.
Canine Reproductive Function Tests: use of Progesterone testing for determining ovulation and the GnRH-Response Test protocol for determining testicular function or castration in male dogs.
Canine Thyroid Tests: use of the thyroid tests T4, T3, free T4 Two-Step and Equilibrium Dialysis methods, Thyroglobulin Autoantibody detection and TSH are reviewed. The different free T4 methods are also discussed.
OFA Canine Thyroid Testing: instructions for submitting samples for the OFA thyroid registry and certification.
Equine Cushings Tests: information about measuring ACTH and Insulin and protocols for the Dexamethasone-Suppression and TRH-Response Tests for horses.
Equine Metabolic Syndrome Tests: information about use of Insulin, Leptin and other testing for the diagnosis of Equine Metabolic Syndrome.
Equine Folate Testing: information about Folate (or Folic Acid) measurement in horses.
Equine Female Reproductive Tests: use of Progesterone testing, the PMSG test (Pregnant Mare Serum Gonadotropin) and measuring Estrone Sulfate for breeding and determining pregnancy in mares.
Equine Male Reproductive Function Tests: use of Testosterone and Estrone Sulfate tests and the hCG-Response Test protocol for evaluating reproductive function in stallions, cryptorchids and geldings.
Equine Thyroid Tests: information on the T4, T3 and free T4 by Equilibrium Dialysis tests and the protocol for the TRH-Response Test for horses is included.
Feline Adrenal Function Tests: protocols for the Low-Dose and High-Dose Dexamethasone-Suppression Tests and ACTH-Response Test for cats.
Feline Metabolic Tests: information for measuring Vitamin B12 and Folate in cats for diagnosing and characterizing some malabsorptive or maldigestion disorders in cats.
Feline Reproductive Function Tests: a protocol using GnRH and then Progesterone testing for detecting ovarian remnants in females and the GnRH-Response Test protocol for determining testicular function or castration in males.
Feline Thyroid Tests: use of the thyroid tests T4, T3, free T4 by Equilibrium Dialysis and TSH for cats are reviewed.
Stephen V. Lamb, BS
Barbara J. Schanbacher, DVM
Jeri-Lyn Cheraskin, MS, DVM
Jorge Adarraga, DVM
The Endocrinology Laboratory offers research testing and immunoassay services, which include assay set up, development, and validation for a variety of hormones. The laboratory has an extensive list of hormones that have been assayed over the years, using mainly immunoassay technologies (i.e. RIA, CIA and ELISA) on samples from many species. Our immunoassay service and expertise supports research in other departments at Cornell and other universities as well as studies by non-profit foundations and institutes. The Research Testing Service is also utilized by scientists in pharmaceutical and life science industries.
The Quality Assurance system, initially established within the Endocrinology Lab, used Good Laboratory Practices (CFR 21 Part 58) as guidelines to maintain quality and ensure data integrity. The laboratory currently has adapted their system to follow the QA program established within the AHDC, necessary for accreditation with AAVLD. The AHDC quality assurance manager can also function as the QAU for studies when necessary. The lab meets standards for laboratory services required by the New York State Department of Health. The laboratory is proficiency tested by the NYS Dept. of Health and voluntarily participates in the Society for Comparative Endocrinology and Veterinary Laboratory Association proficiency testing programs.
Please contact the Endocrinology Laboratory manager (607) 253-3593 or director (607) 253-3796 to review the specifics of your testing needs. Once specifics of the testing are determined (i.e. sample number, species, scheduling, reagents, quality assurance needed, etc.) and a price has been quoted for the work, please refer to the Sample Submission instructions and the Billing Procedures.