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$94,968.00 For Feline Health Studies

Winn Feline Foundation

Vicki Thayer DVM, DABVP (Feline)
Executive Director
888-963-6946, extension 702
Media Info

Steve Dale, CABC
Media Contact and Winn Board Member
888-963-6946, extension 703
Media Info

For Immediate Release

Wyckoff, NJ, August 12, 2014: The Winn Feline Foundation is pleased to announce awards to three feline medical research proposals made possible by the generous support of Zoetis. Winn Board President Glenn Olah, DVM, PhD, DABVP (Feline) stated, “In this special research review we awarded $94,968.00 in grants for studies that will help determine biomarkers in the areas of diagnosing and monitoring the progression of such disease states as painful degenerative joint disease (DJD), chronic kidney disease (CKD) and osteoarthritis (OA) in cats. Winn’s Grant Review Committee remains impressed by the scope of studies and commitment of the researchers who submit proposals each year. It is always very competitive as we select the studies that will receive funding. The committee considered 11 proposals and, based on a number of criteria including the quality of the science, impact of results and available funding, selected the top three studies by consensus. We thank Zoetis for their significant support to help improve feline health.”

Grants were awarded for the following research studies:

Determining indicators of inflammation in painful cats with degenerative joint disease (DJD); (WZ14-005)
Principal Investigator: Duncan Lascelles, BVSc PhD MRCVS DSAS(ST) DECVS DACVS; North Carolina State University;

There is a critical need for safe and effective analgesics treating pain associated with the most common disease of cats – degenerative joint disease (DJD). This is particularly important in such populations of cats with chronic kidney disease (CKD) where current analgesics (pain-killers) are considered to be associated with a risk of toxicity. The results of this study may lead to a biomarker (or biomarker profile) measurement of chronic pain associated with DJD or DJD and CKD – essentially, a ‘blood test’ for chronic pain.

Defining biomarkers involved in the development and progression of feline chronic kidney disease (CKD); (WZ14-009)
Principal Investigators: Paola Scarpa, DVM, PhD; Saverio Paltinieri, DVM, PhD, Dipl ECVCP; Institution: Department of Veterinary Sciences and Public Health, Milan, Italy; $34,887

An early diagnosis of chronic kidney disease (CKD) or of hypertension and proteinuria associated with CKD may allow veterinarians to prevent progression of the disease and ultimately improve the quality of life of affected feline patients. The determination of the time-based appearance of azotemia and changes in the biomarker levels evaluated in this project could verify the identification of an early indicator of CKD.

Identification of osteoarthritis related biomarkers in the cat; (WZ14-011)
Principal Investigators: Drs. Thierry Beths, Jennifer Carter, Sebastien Bauquier; University of Melbourne; $37,266

The radiographic prevalence of osteoarthritis (OA) in cats is estimated to be as high as 90% of the population. However, radiographic evidence has a very poor correlation with clinical signs (either pain or dysfunction). The goal of this study is to develop a blood test biomarker for osteoarthritis in order to diagnose OA earlier, treat OA earlier, and possibly even to use the biomarker as a gauge of the effectiveness of treatment.

About Winn Feline Foundation
The Winn Feline Foundation is a non-profit organization established in 1968 that supports studies to improve cat health. Since 1968, the Winn Feline Foundation has funded more than $4 million in health research for cats at more than 30 partner institutions world-wide. For further information, go to www.winnfelinefoundation.org.