Laminitis affects 15 to 20 percent of all horses over the course of their lifetime, and equine metabolic syndrom (EMS), a clustering of clinical symptoms, is considered the most common cause of this debilitating illness. It is currently difficult to identify horses and ponies at risk for laminitis or to develop new treatment and management strategies because there is a lack of knowledge regarding the disease pathophysiology, individual genetic characteristics, and how genes and environmental factors interact to cause EMS. Researchers will conduct a genome-wide analysis of Morgans and Welsh Ponies to identify genes and alleles associated with EMS and laminitis risk.. The results of this study will expand the understanding of genetic factors that contribute to EMS and will improve veterinarians' ability to predict disease risk and identify animals that can benefit from management changes and/or therapeutic intervention prior to disease onset.
Grant amount awarded
University of Minnesota
Molly E. McCue, DVM, PhD, DACVIM