More than 300 attendees from 29 countries recently convened in Lexington for the ninth International Conference on Equine Infectious Diseases (EID IX). The University of Kentucky Maxwell H. Gluck Equine Research Center, a UK Ag Equine program, hosted the conference.
The five-day conference featured plenary sessions covering infectious and parasitic diseases in the areas of respiratory, gastrointestinal, neurological, reproduction and diseases of the working horse. Abstract presentations focused on specific disease agents, immunology and diagnostics. Special sessions focused on emerging and re-emerging diseases, gastrointestinal parasites and impediments to the international movement of horses. The conference also featured a practitioner's day to highlight some of the more significant findings.
“It was 14 years since the last EIDC conference and needless to say much has happened in the intervening years, said David Horohov, local organizing committee chair and Jes. E and Clementine M. Schlaikjer Endowed Chair at the Gluck Equine Research Center. “The abstracts and plenary sessions provided updated information on a variety of equine infectious and parasitic diseases and identified gaps in our knowledge that will require additional research.”
During the conference, Horohov was named international chair of the newly formed Equine Infectious Diseases Committee. The committee was formed to ensure the international conference series continues every four years.
“In order to ensure the continued success of this meeting, we have adopted bylaws and procedures for future EIDC conferences,” Horohov said. “As the local organizing chair for this conference, I now assume the responsibilities of chair of the committee responsible for developing the program for EIDC X to be held in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2016. I will also work closely with the Local Organizing Committee Chair, Dr. Maria Barrandeguy, as she develops a plan for this meeting.”
Three other faculty members from the Gluck Equine Research Center were named to the 15-member international committee. They include Udeni Balasuriya, Martin Nielsen and Peter Timoney. Other members of the international committee include Maria Barrandeguy (Argentina), Ann Cullinane (Ireland), James Gilkerson (Australia), Alan Guthrie (South Africa), Ken Lam (Hong Kong), Tomio Matsumura (Japan), Richard Newton (United Kingdom), Klaus Osterrieder (Germany), Nicola Pusterla (United States), Andrew Waller (United Kingdom) and Ulli Wernery (United Arab Emirates).
“The international organizing committee is truly international in its composition and represents all fields of research within the area of equine infectious and parasitic diseases,” Horohov said.
The series began in 1966 in Stresa, Italy. Other previous meetings included Paris, France (1969 and 1972); Lyon, France (1976); Lexington, Ky. (1987), Cambridge, United Kingdom (1991); Tokyo, Japan (1994); and Dubai, United Arab Emirates (1998).
“We had an amazing amount of support from the industry in order to make this conference possible. We’d like to thank our sponsors once again for supporting this important conference,” said Ed Squires, UK Ag Equine Programs director and executive director of the UK Gluck Equine Research Foundation.
The platinum sponsor for the conference was Pfizer Animal Health. Gold sponsors were Boehringer Ingelheim, Coolmore America, Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation, IDEXX Laboratories, International Racehorse Transport, Merck Animal Health, Merial and VMRD, Inc. Silver sponsors were the American Association of Equine Practitioners, American Quarter Horse Association, Bayer HealthCare Animal Health, Butler Schein Animal Health, Darley, Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, Juddmonte Farms, Mersant International Limited, Peden Bloodstock GmbH, Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital and Siena Farm, LLC. Bronze sponsors were Castleton Lyons, Centaur, Equine Diagnostic Solutions LLC, Equine Medical Associates, Milburn Equine, Neogen Corporation, North American Equine Ranching Information Council, Platinum Performance and Virbac Animal Health. Other supporters included Gainesway, Kentucky Thoroughbred Association/Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders, Kentucky Thoroughbred Farm Managers’ Club and WinStar Farm, LLC.
The mission of the Gluck Center is scientific discovery, education and dissemination of knowledge for the benefit of the health and well-being of horses. The Gluck Center faculty conducts equine research in six targeted areas: genetics and genomics, infectious diseases and immunology, musculoskeletal science, parasitology, pharmacology/toxicology and reproductive health.
For more information on the Gluck Center, visit http://www.ca.uky.edu/gluck.
David Horohov, 859-218-1098; Jenny Evans, 859-218-1089