Equine Performance Center | Veterinary Medical Center
Patient: Irish Streetsinger, a 3-year-old female Thoroughbred
Owner: Bob McCabe
Critical team members: Drs. Larry Galuppo and Mathieu Spriet
Irish Streetsinger’s issue: Lameness
Racehorse Irish Streetsinger, a 3-year-old female Thoroughbred, was showing some lameness while training and was brought to the UC Davis veterinary hospital for evaluation.
Dr. Mathieu Spriet, of the Diagnostic Imaging Service, was certain she was a good candidate for a positron emission tomography (PET) scan to help specifically pinpoint her injuries. Few veterinary hospitals have PET scanners, and UC Davis is the only facility with one specific for horses. Irish Streetsinger’s PET scan showed specific indicators of injuries that would sideline her from the track.
Owner Bob McCabe was willing to do whatever it took to get Irish Streetsinger healthy again. “We have a special connection,” McCabe said about his relationship with his horse. “She’s very affectionate, very loving.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Larry Galuppo, chief of the Equine Lameness and Surgery Service, identified Irish Streetsinger as a candidate for his clinical trial utilizing stem cells for treatment of equine lameness issues.
Irish Streetsinger received injections of allogeneic stem cells and platelet-rich plasma, which is known to support healing and pain relief in joints. Her response to treatment was followed up with a repeat PET scan at six months, which showed evidence of marked healing of her injuries. Based on this information, it was recommended to institute a training regimen to bring her back to racing. She made a gradual improvement and returned to racing. Within five months, Irish Streetsinger ran seven races with one victory at Golden Gate Fields.
A leg injury can quickly spell the end of a racehorse’s career. For one racehorse in California, though, her injury offered an opportunity for innovative imaging and stem cell treatments, and ultimately a trip back to the winner’s circle.
Equine Performance Center
An Equine Performance Center is being planned as part of the new Veterinary Medical Center at UC Davis. The proposed Equine Performance Center will allow clinicians to offer more advanced services to pleasure horses and equine athletes alike. As an example, a larger arena and gait analysis capability for lameness evaluations will allow for a combination of clinical and laboratory settings to better serve equine clientele. This exciting facility design includes state-of-the-art force-plate and video analysis not available in many veterinary settings and opens a new avenue to improved performance through the application of clinical research.
Support the Veterinary Medical Center: Equine Performance Center
For more information, please contact the Office of Development, at (530) 752-7024.