The Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation board of directors announced March 16 that, for the fourth consecutive year, it has authorized expenditure of more than $1 million to fund veterinary research to benefit all horses.
The 2018 allotment of $1,239,083 will fund 11 new projects at nine universities, seven continuing projects, and two career-development awards.
“Our ability to report such a positive pattern results from the continuing generosity of individuals, associations, and businesses that realize that improvements to horse health and soundness depend on expert equine veterinary research,” said Edward L. Bowen, president of the foundation. “We salute the wisdom, generosity, and dedication of all those donors.”
The 2018 slate of research brings the foundation’s totals since 1983 to more than $26 million to underwrite 358 projects at 43 universities.
New Projects (listed alphabetically by university)
Development Of Limited View 3D Imaging
Chris Kawcak, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVS, ACVSMR, Colorado State University
The goal of this proposal is to develop a point-of-care, 3-dimensional imaging technique that can be used to better characterize and prevent injuries in racehorses.
Thoroughbred Sales Radiology-Ultrasonography Study
C. Wayne McIlwraith, BVSc, PhD, DSc, FRCVS, Dipl. ACVS, Colorado State University
This study will improve the industry’s understanding of the significance of sesamoiditis, ultrasonographic suspensory branch changes, and stifle lucencies in sales yearlings and 2-year-olds.
Investigating Metabolic Stress And Viral Hepatitis
Sabine Mann, DrMedVet, PhD, Dipl. ECBHM, ACVPM, ACVIM, Cornell University
Researchers will study metabolic pathways and hepatic viral infection to find a relationship with maladaptation to training syndrome/high GGT (glutamyl-transferase) to help improve the health and performance of racehorses.
Host Factors Involved In EHM Pathogenesis And Latency
Gisela Soboll Hussey, DVM, MS, PhD, Michigan State University
This project involves development of tools to protect horses from equine herpesvirus-1 infection and to compare the immune responses in old and young horses to identify the mechanisms causing clinical equine herpesvirus myeloencephalopathy (EHM).
Underlying Cause Of Recurrent Exertional Rhabdomyolysis
Stephanie Valberg, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, ACVSMR, Michigan State University
Stress-induced modification to the skeletal muscle calcium release channel forms the basis for tying up in Thoroughbreds and pinpoints a target for development of effective new treatments.
Ampk Agonists And Insulin Dysregulation In Horses
Teresa Burns, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, The Ohio State University
This project directly impacts the treatment of equine metabolic syndrome by assessing the efficacy of two drugs, metformin and acetylsalicylic acid, in the treatment of equine insulin dysregulation.
Effects Of Low-Dust Forage On Athletic Horses Lung Health
Laurent Couetil. DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, Purdue University
This project seeks to provide a nonpharmaceutical solution to the widespread problem of equine asthma by evaluating the benefits of low-dust forage to athletic horses.
Unraveling Complex Traits By Defining Genome Function 2
Carrie Finno, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, University of California, Davis
Developing an atlas of gene regulation in the horse.
Epidemiology Of Drug-Resistant R. equi At Horse Farms
Steeve Giguere, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, University of Georgia
Research is geared to determine if isolates of Rhodococcus equi highly resistant to antibiotics are widespread at horse breeding farms in Kentucky.
Firocoxib Properties In Equine Pregnancy and Placentitis II
Margo Macpherson, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACT, University of Florida
This project should provide a fundamental step toward determining if specific drugs (including firocoxibs) are performing expected functions, such as resolving inflammation, in pregnancies threatened by placentitis.
Novel Analgesic Combination In Horses
Alonso Guedes, DVM, MS, PhD, University of Minnesota
Researchers are developing a medication strategy for joint inflammation/pain that can provide pain relief as well as help protect the joint cartilage from damage caused by chemical mediators of inflammation.
Evaluation Of Kisspeptin And Pregnant Mares
Christianne Magee, DVM, PhD, Colorado State University
This proposal will allow us to gain insight as to how kisspeptins are involved in equine pregnancy and if they can serve as a biomarker for pregnancy compromise.
Cytotoxic T-Cell Immunity To Equine Herpesvirus Type 1
Doug Antczak, VMD, PhD, Cornell University
This research will develop critically needed knowledge about how the horse immune system responds to equine herpesvirus type1 vaccination and infection.
Platelet Lysate Therapy In Infectious Arthritis
Lauren Schnabel, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVS, ACVSMR, North Carolina State University
This proposal examines the antibacterial properties of platelets to treat joint infections in horses more effectively than conventional therapies, with the goal of reducing morbidity and mortality.
Endocrinopathic Laminitis: Pathophysiology And Treatment
James Belknap, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVS, Ohio State University
This study will determine if continuous digital hypothermia is effective and therefore indicated in the management of endocrinopathic laminitis, the most common form of the disease.
Host-directed Control of R. equi Foal Pneumonia—Part II
Angela Bordin, DVM, MS, PhD, Texas A&M University
Researchers will use an inhaled product applied directly into the lungs to increase immune responses to protect foals against Rhodococcus equi, a bacterium that causes severe pneumonia in foals.
Predicting The Risk Of Equine Fatal Injury During Racing
Tim Parkin, BSc, BVSc, PhD, DECVPH, MRCVS, University of Glasgow
The program is designed to use the Equine Injury Database to better predict and identify horses at greatest risk of fatal injury during racing and provide measures to further reduce the number of horses dying on North American racetracks.
Bone Marrow Mononuclear Cells For Equine Joint Therapy
Linda Dahlgren, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVS, Virginia Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine
The results from this study will pave the way to investigate a new cell therapy from equine bone marrow as a targeted regenerative therapy for horses suffering from arthritis.
Storm Cat Career Development Award
Stephanie Bond, BVSc(Hons), University of Calgary
Airway Inflammation: On Pathogenesis and Performance
Bond received the Storm Cat Career Development Award, which is named for the distinguished Thoroughbred stallion Storm Cat and is underwritten by foundation board member Lucy Young Hamilton, whose family bred, raced, and stood Storm Cat.
Renaud Leguillette, DMV, MSc, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, Calgary Chair in Equine Sports Medicine made the following statement: “Dr. Bond has been awarded an Eyes High II DVM Graduate Recruitment Scholarship. … This program seeks to award scholarships to candidates deemed to be highly accomplished and whose potential for research excellence is judged to be outstanding. … The Storm Cat Award is intended to provide supplemental funds for graduate student development [and] would be entirely used as a salary supplement for Dr. Bond. This has been agreed by the Associate Dean of Graduate Education at University of Calgary Veterinary Medicine.”
Elaine and Bertram Klein Career Development Award
Jessica M. Gilbertie, DVM, MS, North Carolina State University
Platelet Lysate Therapy In Infectious Arthritis
Gilbertie received the Elaine and Bertram Klein Development Award of 2018. As is often the case, her studies already have touched different institutions. Although she applied via North Carolina State University, the following recommendation comes from the renowned Dean Richardson, DVM, Dipl. ACVS, of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine’s New Bolton Center: “This letter confirms my support for Dr. Jessica Gilbertie submitting a revision of the grant proposal entitled ‘Platelet-rich Plasma Therapy in Infectious Arthritis’ with Dr. Lauren Schnabel at North Carolina State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Gilbertie was largely responsible for the preliminary data and study design with Dr. Thomas Shaer (BS, VMD), who will be serving as co-investigator. Dr. Gilbertie will be continuing her research on the antimicrobial properties of platelets to support her PhD thesis in Dr. Schnabel’s laboratory.”
The award is named in memory of distinguished horseman and horsewoman Bert and Elaine Klein and is underwritten by their family on behalf of Grayson.
Additional details on the new projects are available at grayson-jockeyclub.org/default.asp?section=2&area=Research&menu=2.