Winn Feline Foundation Is Pleased To Announce Miller Trust Grant Awards

Splash and Zorro making funny faces!
Splash and Zorro making funny faces!

Wyckoff, NJ, December 18th, 2018:

In 2002, the George Sydney and Phyllis Redman Miller Trust designated Winn Feline Foundation as one of its advisor organizations. Winn has subsequently been provided an unprecedented opportunity to make annual recommendations for grant awards to the San Francisco Foundation, trustees of the Miller Trust. The total grant funding varies each year.

For 2018, we are excited to have made the following recommendations for Miller Trust Grant Awards totaling $132,104:

Metagenomic and metabolomic analysis of the short-term and long term effects of antibiotic therapy on the intestinal microbiota in growing kittens and their relation to the overall health status of these kittens; MT18-003

Principal Investigators: Jan Suchodolski DVM, PhD, ACVM; Texas A&M University; Panagiotis Xenoulis, DVM, PhD; University of Thessaly, Greece; $34,800

Antibiotic treatment in children is associated with changes in intestinal bacteria that predispose to obesity and other diseases later in life. This study evaluates similar effects of antibiotics in kittens during their first year of life.

Evaluating the efficacy of novel gastroprotectants in cats; MT18-004

Principal Investigators: M. Katherine Tolbert, DVM, PhD, DACVIM; University of Tennessee; Adesola Odunayo, DVM, MS, DACVECC; $18,080

In an effort to treat cats with intestinal disease, veterinarians often prescribe medications to reduce stomach acid without evidence they are effective, because they work in humans. This study evaluates the effectiveness of these drugs in cats by measuring the reduction in their stomach acid.

Estimating the significance of a novel feline hepadnavirus in hepatitis and liver cancer; MT18-005

Principal Investigator: Patricia Pesavento, DVM, PhD, DACVP; University of California-Davis; $34,880.

Recently, a new virus has been discovered in cats that is similar to the Hepatitis B virus in humans, which causes liver disease. This study looks for the presence of this new virus in samples from cats with liver disease and liver cancer.

Precision Medicine Genomics for Cats; MT18-009

Principal Investigator: Leslie Lyons, University of Missouri-Columbia; $12,648

This study updates the 99 Lives Genome Sequencing Initiative, to identify genes that cause disease in cats, to the latest version that allows more efficient evaluation of these genes. These results will be shared with other researchers to facilitate identification of genes that cause illness in cats. Miller Trust funding will validate DNA variant development and genetic software interfacing for disease/trait projects.

The effects of brachycephalic conformation on cardiopulmonary health in cats; MT18-010

Principal Investigators: Heidi Phillips, VMD, ACVS, Hadley Gleason, VMD; University of Illinois; $31,696

This study evaluates whether cats with facial abnormalities, such as the short face of Persian cats, suffer from diseases such as heart and lung problems in addition to breathing difficulty, and whether surgery can improve their medical condition and quality of life.

In addition, Winn Feline Foundation will be providing support for the following grant awards:

Precision Medicine Genomics for Cats; MTW18-009

Principal Investigator: Leslie Lyons, University of Missouri-Columbia; $21,650

This study updates the 99 Lives Genome Sequencing Initiative, to identify genes that cause disease in cats, to the latest version that allows more efficient evaluation of these genes. These results will be shared with other researchers to facilitate identification of genes that cause illness in cats. Winn funding will deliver genetic testing of identified DNA variants and use of genetic software for different disease/trait projects.

Evaluation of commercial feline diets for calcium, phosphorous and the calcium to phosphorous ratio; MTW18-001

Principal Investigator: Jonathan Stockman, DVM, ACVN; Colorado State University; $9,103. (Feline Kidney Disease Campaign)

High levels of phosphorus with low levels of calcium are known to predispose cats to kidney disease, one of the most common diseases of older cats. This study evaluates the levels of these two metabolites in commercial cat food to see if certain kinds of foods are more likely to have these levels.

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About Winn Feline Foundation 

Winn Feline Foundation is a non-profit organization established in 1968 that supports studies to improve cat health. Since 1968, Winn Feline Foundation has funded more than $6.5 million in health research for cats at more than 30 partner institutions world-wide. For further information, go to www.winnfelinefoundation.org.

Winn Feline Foundation
Vicki L. Thayer DVM, DABVP (Feline)
Executive Director Emeritus
888-963-6946, extension 702
Media Info

Winn Feline Foundation
Steve Dale, CABC
Media Contact and Winn Board Member
773-795-8696
Media Info

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(The photo of 2015 fosters Splash and Zorro at the top was just to catch your attention.)


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From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, The Creative Cat offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats. From catchy and creative headlines to factual articles and fictional stories, The Creative Cat provides constant entertainment and important information to people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

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