LaminTec 5-HT is an innovative equine feed supplement quite different from other products which may supply a ‘missing nutrient’ or concentrate on the hooves. It is designed to help maintain the balance of key substances inside the horse’s body and therefore maintain a healthy circulation, including blood flow to the hoof and its capillary bed. LaminTec 5-HT won a BETA International 2010 Innovation Award (Feeds & Supplements category).
PED NutriTec research has shown that serotonin may be a key chemical in Cushing’s disease. This builds on earlier work by other researchers who have shown its involvement in vasoconstriction of blood vessels associated with the hoof. LaminTec 5-HT contains a standardised formulation (exactly the same from tub to tub) which assists healthy functioning of inflammatory systems, including platelet activating factor; serotonin is released into the blood stream by activated platelets.
Laminitis susceptibility: more important than the disease itself?
Anyone who has spent much time with horses becomes familiar with laminitis, changes in blood flow to the hooves which often result in intense pain and damage…and during the spring and autumn measures to prevent the disease are on the minds of many horse owners. The issue has been that there are many triggers for the disease and no accepted cause, making it difficult to prevent or solve. Laminitis stems from many events, but over-eating and metabolic problems, such as Cushing’s disease, are well known.
Key concerns for vets and horse owners:
- Obesity in the horse and body imbalances brought about through over-eating (autumn flushes of grass and the change of nutrients and sugars in the grass)
- Seasonal changes in the horse’s body which may make it more susceptible to developing laminitis, especially where the horse has an underlying metabolic condition, e.g. Cushing’s disease
There are 1.35 million horses in the UK (BETA NES, 1999) of which between 3-7% might be expected to succumb to laminitis each year (Hinckley and Henderson, 1996).
Researchers at Pegasus Equine Diagnostics believe susceptibility to laminitis may be detected using biogenic amine biomarkers; substances in the body which could help predict if a particular horse is prone to the disease. The idea is that balance must be maintained in the horse’s body for it to be healthy and that there are key chemicals involved. Vets and researchers have been questioning for some years whether the current laboratory tests are helpful, given that false positives for Cushing’s disease may occur in autumn for normal horses and there are varied results of current treatments connected with laminitis.
PED NutriTec has so far helped veterinary clients, horse sanctuaries and general horse owners through novel laboratory tests connected to its scientific work. “We believe this new approach could make a significant contribution to horse welfare. Success in stopping laminitis connected with Cushing’s disease in my own horse was the inspiration for PED NutriTec; we wanted to make that advance available to all.” PED NutriTec won the Sneinton Business Forum Award for Innovation in November 2008.