UC Davis Researchers Seeking Appaloosas for Clinical Trial

The researchers are conducting a clinical trial on equine recurrent uveitis in Appaloosas.
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Researchers at the University of California, Davis (UC Davis), School of Veterinary Medicine are seeking Appaloosa horses for participation in a clinical trial on equine recurrent uveitis (ERU).

Equine recurrent uveitis is an ocular condition that occurs when there is recurrent inflammation along the uveal tract in the eye and is a leading cause of blindness in horses.

“Appaloosa horses, known best for their white coat spotting patterns (termed leopard complex or LP), are eight times more likely than any other breed to develop this disease and four times more likely to go blind, suggesting genetics plays a major contributing role,” a clinical trial description from UC Davis read. “However, little is known about the specific genetic factors involved. The objective of this study is to determine the genetic factors contributing to ERU in Appaloosa horses.”

The primary researchers—Rebecca Bellone, PhD, and Mary Lassaline, DVM, PhD, MA, DACVO—are seeking Appaloosas with known pedigrees to include in their research

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Erica Larson, former news editor for The Horse, holds a degree in journalism with an external specialty in equine science from Michigan State University in East Lansing. A Massachusetts native, she grew up in the saddle and has dabbled in a variety of disciplines including foxhunting, saddle seat, and mounted games. Currently, Erica competes in eventing with her OTTB, Dorado.

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