Concentrations of tryptophan (TRP) and serotonin (5-HT) in plasma were measured in 36 moderately trained Dutch warmblood horses after eight weeks on a high fibre (n=18) or high starch (n=18) diet. Samples were taken three hours after feeding, when the horse was at rest, either at 11.00 or 14.00 hours. Plasma 5-HT and pH were significantly higher in horses fed a high fibre diet than those fed a high starch diet (P<0.05 and P<0.01, respectively), and significantly higher levels of TRP were found in mares than geldings (P<0.05). Plasma 5-HT may therefore be a good marker of serotonergic activity.
- British Veterinary Association. All rights reserved.
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