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New Microchip Technology to Help Horses Fight Allergies
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New Microchip Technology to Help Horses Fight Allergies

Big news! A group of international researchers is on the brink of something big. The research team has introduced an allergen microchip for horses, the first of its kind.

Developed by the Medical University of Vienna, the new allergen microchip can be used to identify allergic sensitization in horses. Experts believe it could be the next step in horse health care. The new allergen microchip has already been tested on humans and featured in leading science journal Allergy.

About the international research team and the newly developed allergen microchip:

The international research team is headed by Erika Jensen-Jarolim, who has a dual affiliation, both to Medical University of Vienna’s Institute of Pathophysiology and Allergy Research and to the inter-university Messerli Research Institute (Vienna University of Veterinary Medicine). In addition to Erika Jensen-Jarolim, the research team also included some researchers from Germany, Japan, and Switzerland.

In the team’s research, they find out that horses develop an antibody reaction through immunoglobulin E production, just like the IgE profile in humans. IgE is an antibody produced by the immune system and is associated with allergic responses. It also described as an important biomarker for detecting allergies.

During the team’s study, several horses were tested and checked for IgE reactivity. Fortunately, the team’s custom-designed allergen microchip was able to identify and check around 131 allergens. The study also includes horses that have been diagnosed with chronic coughing, uticaria, recurrent airway obstruction, and eczema (due to insect bite hypersensitivity).

The team found out a strong IgE immune system reaction to buckwheat, alder pollen and also Bermuda grass. With their findings, the team now plans to work with researcher Uwe Berger and his team from the Medical University of Vienna’s Pollen Monitoring Service. That work will also include thorough study and investigation of the plants found in paddocks.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Creative Commons

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