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Researchers studied the specific lamellar pathology associated with laminitis caused by equine Cushing’s disease, also called pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID). Hooves of 26 horses and ponies were collected following euthanasia or processing for slaughter and divided into those with signs of PPID and laminitis, those with PPID and no clinical signs of laminitis and controls with no clinical signs of PPID or laminitis. Hoof tissues were examined microscopically and circulating insulin, cortisol and glucose were measured.
All animals with both PPID and laminitis had abnormally high insulin levels, but those with PPID and no laminitis had normal insulin levels. Lamellar pathology in animals with PPID and laminitis was variable in severity, unrelated to the duration of laminitis and characterized by increased length and width of the lamellae, chronic abnormal keratinization, interlamellar epidermal bridging, cell death and acute lamellar tearing. The lamellae of horses with PPID and no clinical signs of laminitis were “normal” compared to the controls. This work suggests that regardless of the relationship between PPID and hyperinsulinemia, it is only the abnormally high insulin levels that are associated with laminitis pathology rather than the PPID itself.
— Karinkoski NP et al. EVJ 2016;48:472-478
Researchers at the UC Davis Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory studied the length and width of the wear grooves found on the heels of 1,121 shoes from 242 racehorses to see if they could find a link with racing surfaces and shoe characteristics.
Over half of…