1268: Investigation to identify genes associated with canine immune-mediated haemolytic anaemia
Grant Status: Closed
Grant Amount: $68,339.56
Dr. Lorna J. Kennedy, PhD, University of Manchester
January 1, 2010 - December 31, 2011
Sponsor(s): Clumber Spaniel Club of America, English Cocker Spaniel Club of America, Old English Sheepdog Club of America, Saluki Health Research, Inc., Tibetan Terrier Club of America/Tibetan Terrier Health & Welfare Foundation
Breed(s): Cocker Spaniel, English Cocker Spaniel, English Springer Spaniel
Project Summary This AKC Canine Health Foundation sponsored project has attempted to identify genes associated with immune-mediated haemolytic anaemia (IMHA) in Cocker and Springer spaniels. We performed a Genome Wide Association Study (GWAS) using 40 cases and 76 controls and have identified nine regions of the genome, all of which contain at least one good candidate gene, mutations in which might be linked to the causation of IMHA. Some of these regions are already being investigated further in other related studies.
The next step will be to confirm these associations in a larger cohort of cases and controls for Cocker and Springer Spaniels. We will also test cases and controls from other breeds. The more samples we can test, the more likely we are to be able to identify the involvement of these genes in the susceptibility and development of IMHA.
The identification of any genetic markers for this disease will have several benefits. Firstly we may be able to predict more accurately the risk of individual dogs developing IMHA. Secondly, we may be able to identify the pathways involved in disease development, and thereby provide different ways of providing treatment/s for IMHA than the currently used immunosuppressive drugs.
If any of these regions proves to have a gene associated with IMHA, we will want to screen as many dogs as possible from breeds that are prone to IMHA. We will need to screen known cases, plus their parents and siblings, plus both related and unrelated healthy controls. This will help us develop and establish a risk profile for each gene, and could allow breeders to slowly eliminate this life-threatening disease from their dogs.