By Blood-Horse Staff

A new company, EquiMarker Analytics Corp., has announced it is developing the world’s first equine metabolome platform.

The metabolome is the collection of chemicals or metabolites in the biological organism which represent the products of metabolism. The corporation utilizes the predictive science of metabolomics, which is an advanced method of assessing the chemical “fingerprints” left behind as a result of the metabolic functioning of a living organism, EquiMarker Analytics said in a release.

“Every horse has a unique metabolic signature that can be identified by monitoring metabolites or markers,” the release stated. “This individualized approach to medicine facilitates a greater understanding of the specific traits of each horse, providing more precise measurement of the biological effect of training, nutrition, environment, medication or drugs, and stress than is available with current technologies. Over 200 metabolites have been identified in humans and animals using metabolomic approaches, and their concentrations monitored to better understand health and disease. Key applications of metabolomic biomarkers in human medicine include diagnosis of cancer, cardiovascular performance and disease, liver function, diabetes, and various metabolic disorders.”

EquiMarker Analytics, a Kentucky-based organization headed by University of Cincinnati scientists Drs. Paul Rosevear and Hamid Eghbalnia, said it is creating testing protocols which will have implications for a wide range of equine health and welfare issues, including drug testing and related methodology to support utilization of an equine biological passport; disease prediction, prevention and treatment; and the development of programs to maximize more effective training of equine athletes, among other applications.

The company said strategic partnerships with industry organizations and “a leading veterinary hospital will facilitate this development by bringing together key groups, all working toward the common goal of increased safety and welfare for the equine athlete.”

“Metabolomics is now recognized as a cutting-edge science in human medicine,” Rosevear said in the release. “Construction of the equine metabolome platform is necessary before meaningful metabolomic science like developing an equine biological passport can be accomplished. Both Dr. Eghbalnia and myself have been involved in many of the developments for human application, and we are confident the science of Metabolomics has dramatic positive implications for the equine industry.”

Company founders said once the metabolome is constructed, it will be made available to researchers worldwide through leasing and partnerships. “While we are a for-profit organization, our mission is to make a constructive impact on the equine industry,” said Thomas Clark, a Lexington bloodstock consultant and EquiMarkers founder.

Founders include Drs. Rosevear and Eghbalnia, veterinarian Dr. Tony Wolfe, research specialist Dr. Emily Plant, industry advisor Bill Oppenheim, and Clark.