Validation of a Novel Collection Device for Non-Invasive Urine Sampling from Free-Ranging AnimalsReport as inadecuate

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Recent advances in non-invasively collected samples have opened up new and exciting opportunities for wildlife research. Different types of samples, however, involve different limitations and certain physiological markers e.g., C-peptide, oxytocin can only be reliably measured from urine. Common collection methods for urine to date work best for arboreal animals and large volumes of urine. Sufficient recovery of urine is thus still difficult for wildlife biologists, particularly for terrestrial and small bodied animals. We tested three collection devices two commercially available saliva swabs, Salivette synthetic and cotton, and cotton First aid swabs against a control to permit the collection of small volumes of urine from the ground. We collected urine samples from captive and wild macaques, and humans, measured volume recovery, and analyzed concentrates of selected physiological markers creatinine, C-peptide, and neopterin. The Salivette synthetic device was superior to the two alternative devices. Concentrations of creatinine, absolute C-peptide, C-peptide per creatinine, absolute neopterin, and neopterin per creatinine measured in samples collected with this device did not differ significantly from the control and were also strongly correlated to it. Fluid recovery was also best for this device. The least suitable device is the First aid collection device; we found that while absolute C-peptide and C-peptide per creatinine concentrations did not differ significantly from the control, creatinine concentrations were significantly lower than the control. In addition, these concentrations were either not or weakly correlated to the control. The Salivette cotton device provided intermediate results, although these concentrations were strongly correlated to the control. Salivette synthetic swabs seem to be useful devices for the collection of small amounts of urine from the ground destined for the assessment of physiological parameters. They thus provide new opportunities for field studies to incorporate physiological markers, particularly on smaller bodied and terrestrial animals and where urine collection is difficult.

Author: Lisa Michelle Danish , Michael Heistermann, Muhammad Agil, Antje Engelhardt



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