Two research projects focusing on the causes of laminitis and possible cures will be supported by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Charities “Barbaro Memorial Fund,” which was created in memory of 2006 Kentucky Derby winner. The projects, which were selected from nine submitted to a panel of experts, will be conducted at the University of Georgia and Louisiana State University.
The projects chosen were designed by Professor Susan Eades, D.V.M., of Louisiana State University and Professor Douglas Allen, D.V.M., of the University of Georgia and are scheduled to be completed within two years. Eades’s project will focus on understanding how laminitis actually develops. Also, it will evaluate whether the medication doxycycline can prevent the onset of the disease and help the horses already stricken with laminitis. Allen’s project will follow up on recent research indicating that serotonin might be a key chemical responsible for development of laminitis. It will also investigate whether a medication that breaks down serotonin might prevent the clinical signs of laminitis.