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Jens Häggström

Jens Häggström
Professor of Internal Medicine, Companion Animals, and Scetion Head for Medicine and Surgery, Companion Animals at the Department of Clinical Sciences.


Works primarily with heart disease in companion animals (dogs, cats and horses). Main interests include basic pathophyisiology and mechanisms of disease, genetics, diagnostic methods and treatment of different cardiac diseases.


Aquired heart disease in dogs and cats (myxomatous mitral valve disease, dilated cardiomyopathy and feline cardiomyopathy),  and diagnostic imaging methods and laboratory tests relevant for cardiac disease, pathophysiology, prognostication and therapy of congestive heart failure and arrhythmias, genetic risk factors for cardiac disease, and chronic kidney disease in dogs.

Research grants

I have been granted research funding as main or co-applicant from the following research councils, foundations organizations and pharmaceutical companies: Swedish Medical Research Council Medicinska, The Swedish Research Council, Formas, European Union, Danish research council for Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Danish Research and Innovation Council, Agria Animal Insurances, Swedish Kennel Club, Thure F och Karin Forsbergs Foundation, Swedish Cavalier Society, Swedish Grand Danois Club, American Cavalier Health Foundation, ATG Research Council, Winn Foundation, Merck and Co., Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Ceva Sante Animale, and the Foundation for Animal Hospitals in the Greater Stockholm Area.


Academic history and education

Professor (Chair) in Small Animal Internal Medicine (from 2012 to present) and Section Head of Medicine and Surgery, Companion Animals, at the Department of Clinical Sciences (from 2014 to present), Uppsala.

2003-2012 Promoted Professor at the Department of Small Animal Medicine and Surgery, SLU, Uppsala.

2002-2003 Associate Professor at the Department of Small Animal Medicine and Surgery, SLU, Uppsala.

2001-2002 Employed 30% of my time by the University Rector with strategic planning of undergraduate education at the University (SLU).

2001-2002 Associate professor (vikarierande (t.f.) universitetslektor) Department of Small Animal Medicine and Surgery, SLU, Uppsala

2000 Associate Professor (Docent) in Clinical Physiology at the Department of Animal Physiology, SLU, Uppsala

1998 Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ECVIM-CA) subspecialty Cardiology.

1997-2001 Assistant Professor (Forskarassistent) in Clinical Physiology at the Department of Animal Physiology, SLU, Uppsala 1996 Doktorsexamen i klinisk fysiologi (kardiologi), institutionen för fysiologi, SLU

1996 PhD Thesis entitled “Chronic valvular disease in the Cavalier King Charles spaniel: epidemiology, inheritance and pathophysiology”, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden.

1991-97 Ph.D. position (Doktorand) in Clinical Physiology (Cardiology) at the Department of Physiology, SLU, Uppsala

1991 Short-term research employment (3 months) granted by the Veterinary Faculty Board, SLU, Uppsala

1990 Graduation from the Veterinary Program, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden.

Academic milestones

From 1992 to 2017, I have been an author of 150 scientific articles (h-factor 34) published in internationally distributed peer-viewed journals and have published 15 book chapters in internationally distributed veterinary testxbook including the 2000, 2005, 2010 and 2015 editions of Ettinger and Feldtman “Textbook of Veterinary Internal Medicine”.

Selected other Assignements

2012-2016 Member of SciLafeLab Program Committee, Uppsala.

2009-2010  Member of the ACVIM Subcommittee on diagnosis of Dilated Cardiomyopathy in dogs. (Guidelines presented in 2010 at the ACVIM Speciality Symposium, Anaheim, California).

2006-2017 Member of the ACVIM Consensus Statement Group concerning therapy of mitral valve disease. Results presented at the 2009 ACVIM forum in Montreal and published in 2009. This paper was one of top 5 of the most frequently downloaded manuscripts between 2008 and 2011. The Consensus Statement is under revision and will be revised in 2017.

2007-2010, 2013- Member of the Committee for Higher Academic Positions at Faculty for Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Uppsala

2005-2006 Member of the Executive Board of the The Canine Heart Failure International Expert Group (CHIEF)

2004-2007 Member of the Faculty Research Council, Uppsala.

2001-2002 Member of the Committee for strategical planning of graduate studies at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala.

2000-2001 Study coordinator for the PhD programs at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine

2000 Coordinator for the new system of admittance the Veterinary School in Sweden

1998- European Specialist (Diplomate)of  the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (Cardiology), and from 1999 member of the Board of the Cardiology Speciality Group and between 2003 and 2006, I was acting as President over the Speciality Group Cardiology and member of the ECVIM Executive Committee. Between 1999 to 2006 I was Chairman of the Education and Credential Committee within the Speciality Group.

1996-97 Member of the Board for Strategical Planning of Higher Academic Positions at the Veterinary Faculty, Uppsala

1993-1995, 2000-2001 Member of the Faculty Research Council, Uppsala

1992-1995, 2000-2001 Member of the University Research Council

1996- to present member of the Executive committee of ESVC. 2007-2010 President Elect, 2010-2014 President of ESVC, and 2014- Past President.

1991 – to present-European Society of Veterinary Medicine (ESVIM). From 1998-2002 member of the ESVIM/ECVIM Permanent and Executive Congress Committee, from 1998 to 2003 member of the Scientific Congress Committee as ESVC representative.

Expert reviewer and evaluations

Faculty Opponent/External Reviewer of many PhD thesis and External Reviewer of many applicants to Professorships in Sweden and abroad.

Reviewer of many research applications for funding on behalf of many different Swedish and foreign research organizations.

Reviewer of scientific manuscripts for the following journals: Journal of Cardiovascular Research, Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, Research in Veterinary Science, Veterinary Radiology and ultrasound, Journal of Veterinary Cardiology, Acta Veterinaria Scandinavia, Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery, Journal of Small Animal Practise, The Veterinary Journal.

Interaction with industry and society


I have acted as Lead Investigator in different 4 international (multicenter) clinical pharmaceutical trials. I have acted as Chairman of program committees for many international conferences arranged by different organizations and the pharmaceutical industry. I am a scientific advisor to the following organzations and companies:

Swedish Kennel Club, Swedish Medical product Agency, Merial Inc., Orion Pharma, Boehringer-Ingelheim, CEVA sante Animale SA, PawPeds, and several different canine and feline breed clubs.


I have been interviewed by media >50 times concerning health issues in dogs and cats and current research in national TV, national radio and other national/international media since 1991. I have presented research results many times to the public, canine and feline breed clubs and to the veterinary profession. I have arranged (and conducted) continuing education courses for veterinarians in Sweden and abroad >50 courses.

Key-note and invited lectures

>300 abstracts in Conference Proceedings of Internationella konferenser, invited lecturer to approximately 150 of these abstracts. Presented Keynote (State of the Art) presentations at 25 occasions.


1998 PhD Thesis awarded a price for prominent thesis by the Royal Academy of Agriculture and Forestry delivered by the Swedish King Carl XVI Gustaf at Stockholm City Hall.

1997 PhD Thesis awarded the Carolus Linneus Price by the Swedish Royal Science Society for outstanding achievement

1997 Hjalmar Håkansson Award by the Swedish Veterinary Association for best veterinary academic thesis.

2017 World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) International Award for Scientific Achievement


PhD Advisor

I have been advisor to 12 PhD students in Sweden and abroad whom all successfully defended their theses, of which I acted as main advisor to 4 and co-advisor to 8. Currently advisor to 4 PhD students.

Selected publications

Boswood A, Häggström J, Gordon SGG, Wess G, Stepien RL, Oyama MA, Keene BW, Bonagura JD, MacDonald KA, Patteson M, Smith S, Fox PR, Sandersom K, Woolley R, Szatmari V, Menaut P, Church WM, O'Sullivan L, Jaudon JP, Kresken JG, Rush J, Barrett KA, Rosenthal SL, Saunders AB, Ljungvall I, Deinert M, Bomassi E, Estrada A, Fernandez Del Palacio MJ, Moise NS, Abbott JA, Fuji Y, Spier A, Luethy MW, Santilli RA, Uechi M, Tidholm A, Watson P. Effect of pimobendan in dogs with preclinical myxomatous mitral valve disease and cardiomegaly: The EPIC study - A randomized clinical trial. J Vet Intern Med. 2016;30:1765-1779.

Häggström J, Andersson Å, Falk T, Nilsfors L, OIsson U, Kresken JG, Höglund K, Rishniw M, Tidholm A, Ljungvall I. Effect of body weight on echocardiographic measurements in 19 866 screened pure-bred cats with or without heart disease. J Vet Intern Med 2016;30:1601-1611.

Melin M, Rivera P, Arendt M, Elvers I, Murén E, Gustafson U, Starkey M, Sverdrup Borge K, Lingaas F, Häggström J, Saellström S, Rönnberg H, Lindblad-Toh K. Genome-wide analysis identifies germ-line risk factors associated with canine mammary tumours. PLOS Genetics 2016;12(5):e1006029.

Olsen LH, Birkegaard AC, Reimann MJ, Martinussen T, Mogensen C, Valentiner-Branth G, Rønn-Landbo M, Sørensen JL, Knold P, Koch J, Häggström J, Pedersen HD.

Evaluation of a breed scheme aiming at reducing the prevalence of myxomatous mitral valve disease in cavalier King Charles spaniels. J Vet Intern Med 2016; 30:63-68.

Forsberg S, Kierczak M, Ljungvall I, Merveille AC, Gouni V, Wiberg M, Lundgren Willesen J, Hanås S, Lequarré AS, Mejer Sørensen L, Tiret L, Momozawa Y, McEntee K, Seppälä E, Koch J, Battaille G, Lohi H, Fredholm M, , Chetboul V, Georges M, Häggström J, Carlborg Ö, Lindblad-Toh K, Höglund K. The Shepherds' tale: a genome-wide study across 9 dog breeds implicates two loci for regulation of fructosamine serum concentrations in Belgian Shepherds. PloSOne 2015 13;10(5):e0123173.

Borgarelli M, Abbott J, Braz-Ruivo L, Chiavegato D, Crosara S, Lamb K, Ljungvall I, Poggi M, Santilli RA, Häggström J. Prevalence and prognostic significance of pulmonary hypertension in dogs with myxomatous mitral valve degeneration. J Vet Intern Med 2015:29;569-574.

Velikyan I, Rosenström U, Eriksson O, Ljungvall I, Häggström J, Sergio E, Antoni, G.

Synthesis and preclinical evaluation of 68Ga-labeled collagelin analogues for imaging and quantification of fibrosis. Nucl Med Biol 2014;41:728-736.

Häggström J, Lord PF, Höglund K, Ljungvall I, Kvart C, Hansson K. Comparison of short-term effects of pimobendan and benazepril on pulmonary transit times, cardiac dimensions and neuroendocrine profile in dogs with congestive heart failure due to myxomatous mitral valve disease. J Vet Intern Med 2013; 27: 1452-1462.

Häggström J, Boswood A, O'Grady M, Jöns O, Smith S, Swift S, Borgarelli M, Gavaghan B, Kresken, JG, Patteson M, Åblad B,. Bussadori CM, Glaus T, Kovacevic A, Rapp M, Santilli RA, Tidholm A, Eriksson A, Belanger CM, Deinert M,. Little C, Kvart C, French A, Rønn-Landbo M, Wess G, Eggertsdottir, O'Sullivan L, Schneider M, Lombard CW, Dukes-McEwan J, Willis R, Louvet A, DiFruscia R. Longitudinal analysis of quality of life, clinical, radiographic, echocardiographic, and laboratory variables in dogs with myxomatous mitral valve disease receiving Pimobendan or Benazepril: The QUEST study. J Vet Intern Med 2013; 27: 1441-1451.

Ljungvall I, Höglund K, Lilliehöök I, Oyama M, Tidholm A, Tvedten H, Häggström J. Serum serotonin concentration is associated with severity of myxomatous mitral valve disease. J Vet Intern Med 2013; 27:1105-1112.

FalkT, LjungvallI, ZoisNE, JönssonL, OlsenLH PedersenHD, HöglundK, Häggström J. Cardiac Troponin-I is predictive of myocardial arteriosclerosis and fibrosis in dogs with congestive heart failure due to myxomatous mitral valve disease. J Vet Intern Med. 2013;27:500-506.

Gandolfi B, Alhaddad H, Affolter KV, Brockman J, Häggström J, Joslin S, Koehne AL, Mullikin JC, Outerbridge CA, Warren WC, Lyons LA. To the root of the curl: a signature of recent selective sweep identifies a mutation that defines the Cornish Rex cat breed. PLoS One 2013:27;8:e67105.

Alhaddad H, Grahn RA, Gandolfi B, Mullikin JC, Cole SA, Gruffydd-Jones TJ, Häggström J, Lohi H, Longeri M, Lyons LA. Extent of Linkage Disequilibrium in the Domestic Cat, Felis catus, and its Breeds. PLoS One 2013;8(1):e53537

Philipp U, Vollmar A, Thomas A, Häggström J, Distl O. Multiple quantitative trait loci (QTL) are causing dilated cardiomyopathy in Irish wolfhounds. PLoS ONE. 2012;7(6):e36691

Ljungvall I. Höglund K, Carnabuci C, Tidholm A, HäggströmJ. Assessment of global and regional left ventricular volume and shape using reat-time three dimensional echocardiography in dogs with myxomatous mitral valve disease. J Vet Intern Med 2011;25: 1036-1043.

Busk Madsen M,Olsen LH, Häggström J, Höglund K, Ljungvall I, Falk T, Wess G, StephensonH, Dukes-McEwan J, Chetboul V, Gouni V, Proschowsky HF, Cirera S,Karlskov-Mortensen H, Fredholm M. Identification oftwo loci associated with development of myxomatous mitral valve disease in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. Journal of Heredity 2011;102 Suppl 1:S62-S67.

Höglund K, Häggström J, Bussadori C, Kvart C. Aprospective cohort study of systolic ejection murmurs and the left ventricular outflow tract in boxer dogs during the growth period. J Small Anim Pract.2011;52:11-17.

Ljungvall I, Höglund K, Tidholm A, Olsen LH, Borgarelli M, Venge P, HäggströmJ. Cardiac troponin I is associated with severity of myxomatous mitralvalve disease, age, heart rate, and C-reactive protein in dogs. J Vet Intern Med 2010;24: 153-159

Bernay F, Bland JM, Häggström J, Baduel L, Combes B, Lopez A,Kalsatos V. Efficacy of Spironolactone on Survival in Dogs with Naturally occurring Myxomatous Mitral Valve Disease. J Vet Intern Med 2010:24; 331-341

Tidholm A, Westling AB, Höglund K, Ljungvall I, Häggström J. Comparisons of 3-, 2-Dimensional, and M-Modeechocardiographical methods for estimation of left chamber volumes in dogs with and without acquired heart disease. J Vet Intern Med 2010:24;1414-1420.

Eriksson M, von Euler H, Ekman E, Nordling K, Häggström J, Johansson J. Surfactant Protein C in Canine Pulmonary Fibrosis. J Vet Intern Med 2009;23: 1170-1174.

Meurs KM, Norgard M, Kuan M, Häggström J, Kittleson M. Analysis ofeight sarcomeric candidate genes for feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy mutations in cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. J Vet Intern Med.2009;23:840-843.

Atkins C, Bonagura JD, Ettinger SJ, Fox P, Gordon S, Häggström J, Hamlin RL, Keene BW, Luis-Fuentes V,Stepien R. Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Canine Chronic Valvular Heart Disease: ACVIM Connsensus Statement. J Vet Intern Med 2009;23:1142-1150.

Rivera P, Melin M, Biagi T, Fall T, Häggström J, Lindbladh-Toh, von Euler H. Mammary tumor development in dogs is associated with BRCA1 and BRCA2.Cancer Res. 2009;69:8770-8774.

Egenvall A, Nødtvedt A, Häggström J, Ström-Holst B, Möller L, Bonnett BN. Mortality of life-insured Swedish cats during 1999 to 2006: Age, breed, gender, and diagnosis. J Vet Intern Med 2009;23: 1175-1183.

Häggström J, Boswood A,O'Grady M, Jöns O, Smith S, Swift S, Borgarelli M, Gavaghan B, Kresken, JG, Patteson M, Åblad B,. Bussadori CM, Glaus T, Kovacevic A, Rapp M, Santilli RA, Tidholm A, Eriksson A, Belanger CM, Deinert M,. Little C, Kvart C, French A,Rønn-Landbo M, Wess G, Eggertsdottir, O'Sullivan L, Schneider M,. Lombard CW, Dukes-McEwan J, Willis R, Louvet A, DiFruscia R. Effect of Pimobendan or Benazepril Hydrochloride on Survival Times in Dogs with Congestive Heart Failure due to Naturally Occurring Myxomatous Mitral Valve Disease: the QUESTStudy . J Vet Intern Med 2008:22;1124-1135.

Moesgaard SG, Pedersen LG, Teerlink T, Häggström J, Pedersen HD. Neurohormonal and circulatory effects of short-term treatment with enalapril and quinapril in dogs with asymptomatic mitral regurgitation. J Vet Intern Med 2005;19: 712-719.

Kvart C, Häggström J, Pedersen HD,Hansson K, Eriksson A, Jarvinen AK, Tidholm A, Bsenko K, Ahlgren E, Ilves M,Ablad B, Falk T, Bjerkfas E, Gundler S, Lord P, Wegeland, G, Adolfsson E,Corfitzen J. Efficacy of enalapril for prevention of congestive heart failure in dogs with myxomatous valve disease and asymptomatic mitral regurgitation. J Vet Intern Med. 2002;16: 80-88

Cornell CC, Kittleson MD, Della Torre P, Häggström J, Lombard CW, Pedersen HD, Vollmar A, Wey A. Allometric scaling of M-modecardiac measurements in normal adult dogs. J Vet Intern Med 2004;18: 311-312.

Hansson K, Häggström J, Kvart C, Lord P. Leftatrial to aortic root indices using two-dimensional and M-mode echocardiography in cavalier King Charles spaniels with and without left atrial enlargement. Vet Radiol Ultrasound. 2002;43: 568-575.

Häggström J, Hansson K, Karlberg BE, Kvart C,Madej A and Olsson K. Effects of long-term treatment with enalapril orhydralazine on the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system and fluid balance indogs with naturally acquired mitral valve regurgitation. Am J Vet Res1996:57;1645-1652.

Swenson L, Häggström J, Kvart C, and Juneja K. Relationship between parental cardiac status in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and prevalence and severity of chronic valvular disease in offspring. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996:208:2009-2012.

Häggström J, Hansson K, Kvart C and Swenson L. Chronic valvular disease in the cavalier King Charles spaniel in Sweden. Vet Rec 1992;131:459-553.


Professor at the Department of Clinical Sciences; Smådjursmedicin
Telephone: +4618672124
Postal address:
SLU, Institutionen för kliniska vetenskaper
Box 7054
750 07 UPPSALA
Visiting address: Ulls väg 26, Uppsala