Applications, challenges, and strategies in the use of nanoparticles as feed additives in equine nutrition
The rapid expansion of nanotechnology has been transforming the food industry by increasing market share and expenditure. Although nanotechnology offers promising benefits as feed additives, their usage in equines is primarily geared toward immunotherapy, hyper-immunization techniques, drug delivery systems, grooming activities, and therapeutic purposes. Nanoparticles could be engaged as alternatives for antibiotic feed additives to prevent foal diarrhea. Gold nanoparticles are proved to provide beneficial effects for racehorses by healing joint and tendon injuries. Because of the poor bioavailability of micro-sized mineral salts, the usage of nano-minerals is highly encourageable to improve the performance of racehorses. Nano-Vitamin E and enzyme CoQ10 for equines are no longer a simple research topic because of the increased commercial availability. Employing nanotechnology-based preservatives may offer a promising alternative to other conventional preservatives in preserving the quality of equine feed items, even during an extended storage period. While nanoparticles as feed additives may provide multitudinous benefits on equines, they could elicit allergic or toxic responses in case of improper synthesis aids or inappropriate dosages. The safety of nano-feed additives remains uninvestigated and necessitates the additional risk assessment, especially during their usage for a prolonged period. To adopt nano-feed additives in horses, there is an extreme paucity of information regarding the validity of various levels or forms of nanoparticles. Further, the currently available toxicological database on the topic of nano-feed additives is not at all related to equines and even inadequate for other livestock species. This review aims to provide new insights into possible future research pertaining to the usage of nano-feed additives in equines.