Gene doping addressed at PHBA Annual Meeting
- May 23, 2019
- By SARA CAVANAGH
KENNETT SQUARE, Pa.--The ability of trainers using equine gene therapy to greatly improve the performances of their horses is apparently getting closer, according to Mary Robertson of New Bolton Center.
The Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association donated $300,000 to New Bolton Center to study equine gene doping, and Robertson addressed the Annual Meeting at the Kennett Square Golf Club on May 22, reporting on the use of that money.
"Gene doping is taking a gene and trying to manipulate it to make a better horse," said Robertson. "The technology has accelerated very quickly. We know it works, and it's threatening to the industry."
"We took the money PHBA gave us (for use in research), and we were able to develop a method whereby we can go out in the field and collect samples and we can also collect samples from tracks," said Robertson."We have developed a method to detect the vehicle that can inject the material into a cell. It's been six months since we received the donation, and things are moving quickly."
"People are going to start doping horses, and they can change the performance of a horse, perhaps indefinitely, unless we find a way to detect it," said PHBA President Roger Legg.