Speakers Announced for 2013 Laminitis Conference

When the world's leading laminitis researchers, scholars, clinicians, and farriers present their newest findings at the International Equine Conference on Laminitis and Diseases of the Foot, in West Palm Beach, Fla., in November, the work of the Animal Health Foundation (AHF) will take center stage.

The announcement of the conference program and speaker list shows that presenters from the Australian Equine Laminitis Research Unit (AELRU), Tufts University, and Cornell University will share critical laminitis research funded by the AHF.
Donald Walsh, DVM, president and founder of the AHF, will speak on his personal research into the history of relationships between obesity, grass founder, and chronic laminitis. He’ll also moderate a panel with researcher Nick Frank, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, and farrier Gene Ovnicek analyzing the clinical management of “real life” metabolic laminitis cases.
Chris Pollitt, BVSc, PhD, director of the AELRU, will join Walsh on the faculty at the conference; the AHF has supported his work for many years. Pollitt will review his team’s analysis of the function of the suspensory apparatus of the distal phalanx (coffin bone) and also reveal progress in early investigation of the lymphatic system in the equine foot.
In addition, Pollitt will present a 3-D process for creating digitally enhanced equine anatomy models of hooves from CT scans, using a 3-D printer. Pollitt has been a featured speaker at the six previous laminitis conferences.
Andrew van Eps, BVSc, PhD, MACVSc, Dipl. ACVIM, will be traveling to the conference with Pollitt from Australia. Eps received his PhD at the University of Queensland by researching laminitis with Pollitt at the AELRU; his previous contributions have included the first studies of the use of cryotherapy (ice therapy) to prevent laminitis. At West Palm Beach this year, he will lecture on cryotherapy, support-limb laminitis, and the use of pain medication for horses with laminitis.
Frank will be the newest face on the AHF roster of researchers as well as a key speaker at the conference. He is a professor of large animal internal medicine at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, where he researches the endocrinopathic form of laminitis. The Animal Health Foundation funded his recent research to verify a new test to identify horses with insulin resistance.
Cornell University’s Samantha Brooks, PhD, conducts laminitis studies funded by the Animal Health Foundation and submitted research that was accepted, but she is unable to present her lecture on the genetic mapping of susceptibility to endocrinopathy and laminitis.
The Laminitis Conference will be held Nov. 1-3, 2013, at the Marriott Convention Center in West Palm Beach. The event will feature 60 lecturers and abstract presenters from five continents, a variety of educational formats, poster sessions, a trade show, and social events. Visit the Laminitis Conference website to learn more.
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