Public Release: 

Parasites and metabolic syndrome -- Morris Animal Foundation's newest equine studies

Morris Animal Foundation

Morris Animal Foundation is funding three new pilot studies in horse health, with a focus on equine parasitic worms and equine metabolic syndrome. The studies, collectively awarded more than $30,000 in grants, are in addition to eight large-animal research projects the Foundation announced in April.

The Foundation awarded pilot study grants to researchers at the University of Delaware, Murdoch University in Australia, and Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Morris Animal Foundation's Large Animal Scientific Advisory Board reviewed all submitted grant applications and selected, based on scientific merit and impact, the studies with the greatest potential to save lives, preserve health and advance veterinary care. The additional 2018 pilot studies are:

Identifying Drug Resistant Parasites (University of Delaware)

Researchers will use molecular methods to identify which species of equine parasitic worms come back first after deworming. Understanding drug sensitivity and specific resistance mechanisms will help researchers develop more effective and targeted deworming strategies.

Evaluating New Equine Metabolic Syndrome Test (Murdoch University)

Researchers will investigate a new laboratory test to improve diagnosis of equine metabolic syndrome, a metabolic and hormonal disorder in horses. A new efficient and cost-effective EMS test will help veterinarians better diagnose and manage this complex disease in horses.

Understanding the Role of the Microbiome in Equine Metabolic Syndrome (Utrecht University)

Researchers will investigate the potential relationship between the bacterial composition of the gut, known as the microbiome, and the development of equine metabolic syndrome in Shetland ponies. Understanding how EMS develops, and the role of gut bacteria in this process, might provide new opportunities to intervene in early stages of disease and help prevent horses and ponies from getting EMS in the future.

Morris Animal Foundation pilot studies are small, cost-effective studies that test new, innovative ideas to accelerate the scientific discovery process and advance the Foundation's mission. The studies each last one year.


About Morris Animal Foundation

Morris Animal Foundation's mission is to bridge science and resources to advance the health of animals. Founded by a veterinarian in 1948, we fund and conduct critical health studies for the benefit of all animals. Learn more at

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.