Regenerative Medicine At Blue Ridge Equine Clinic
We offer multiple regenerative medicine products to help your horse heal better. Please contact your veterinarian for pricing and to discuss which product is best for your horse.
Autologous Conditioned Serum: IRAP II (Arthrex, Inc)
IRAP stands for Interleukin 1 Receptor Antagonist Protein (IL-1Ra). Interleukin 1 (IL-1) is the major cause of inflammation in the joint, leading to pain and eventual cartilage destruction. IRAP is a protein that binds to the receptor for IL-1 and prevents these deleterious effects. To make IRAP the veterinarian, using sterile technique, draws blood from your horse. The blood is transferred into a special tube containing glass beads. Monocytes, a type of white blood cell, bind to the beads which stimulates production of regenerative and anti-inflammatory proteins. This process takes place over a 24 hour incubation period in the lab. After incubation, a centrifuge is used to separate serum from whole blood. The serum, which contains concentrated IRAP, is extracted and allocated into sterile tubes. It can be stored frozen for up to one year. Typical yield is 4-6 doses per IRAP kit. The IRAP can be thawed and injected intra-articular (into a joint) weekly or as needed for treatment of osteoarthritis. IRAP has been shown to be a safe and effective treatment for osteoarthritis. (D. Frisbie et al. Am J Vet Res 2007:68(3):290-6)
Platelet Rich Plasma: E-PET Equine Platelet Enhancement Therapy (Pall Corp)
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is a preparation made from autologous whole blood which is processed in a way that causes platelets and growth factors to concentrate. Platelets go to the site of injury and release many substances that promote healing, stimulate blood vessel formation, recruit endogenous stem cells, and control inflammation. The veterinarian can prepare PRP stall side for immediate use by taking blood from your horse and using a special filtration bag system. The PRP is then injection into the site of the injury, usually with ultrasound guidance. It is typically used in tendons and ligaments to help stimulate healing, but has also been used in joints. This particular PRP product has been shown to be a safe and effective treatment for suspensory branch injuries. (G. Castelijins et al., VetComp OrthopTraumatol 2011:24(5)363-9)
Pro-Stride (Owl Manor)
Pro-Stride is a combination of IRAP and PRP in a single product. Pro-Stride is prepared from autologous whole blood which can be processed horse side in about 20 minutes using a special portable centrifuge. Pro-Stride is injected intra-articular (into the joint). It has been reported to reduce pain associated with arthritis and deliver anti-inflammatory proteins to the site of injury. In one study, Pro-Stride was shown to provide pain relief for up to one year (A. Bertone, Am J Vet Res 2014; 75:141-151).
Bone Marrow derived Stem Cell Therapy (Therapy Cell, Equine Partners of America LLC)
Stem cells have the unique capacity to renew themselves and develop into specialized cell types, allowing an injured horse to naturally regenerate tissue that has been damaged. They occur naturally in the body, but for some injuries the existing number is not able to cope with the severity of the damage. Stem cells are collected from the horse’s own bone marrow and then expanded in cell culture for several weeks. The stem cells are injected into the site of injury usually with ultrasound guidance. Stem cells can also be stored frozen for use at a later time. Stem cell have been shown to reduce reinjury rates in racehorses with superficial digital flexor tendon injuries (E. Godwin et al. EVJ 2012;44:25-32.)