The therapeutic benefits of Greenshell™ mussel (GSM; Perna canaliculus) preparations have been studied using in vitro test systems, animal models, and human clinical trials focusing mainly on anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic effects.
Activity is thought to be linked to key active ingredients that include omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, a variety of carotenoids and other bioactive compounds.
In this paper, we review the studies that have been undertaken in dogs, cats, and horses, and outline new research directions in shellfish breeding and high-value nutrition research programmes targeted at enhancing the efficacy of mussel and algal extracts. The addition of GSM to animal diets has alleviated feline degenerative joint disease and arthritis symptoms, and chronic orthopaedic pain in dogs.
In horses, GSM extracts decreased the severity of lameness and joint pain and provided improved joint flexion in limbs with lameness attributed to osteoarthritis.
Future research in this area should focus on elucidating the key active ingredients in order to link concentrations of these active ingredients with their pharmacokinetics and therapeutic effects. This would enable consistent and improved efficacy from GSM-based products for the purpose of improved animal health.