2104: Defining Inheritance of Idiopathic Epilepsy in the Mastiff, Poodle and Giant Schnauzer

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $37,500
Dr. Anita M. Oberbauer, PhD, University of California, Davis
May 14, 2001 - June 30, 2003
Sponsor(s): Giant Schnauzer Club of America, Mary and Peter Hayes, Mastiff Club of America
Breed(s): Giant Schnauzer, Toy Poodle, Miniature Poodle, Mastiff, Standard Poodle
Research Program Area: Epilepsy

Abstract

Idiopathic epilepsy affects nearly 35 different purebred dog breeds and in a 1999 survey was considered one of the top canine health issues identified by the AKC parent breed clubs. The objective of the present study is to determine the mode of inheritance and heritability of idiopathic epilepsy in the Poodle and Giant Schnauzer breeds. This will be done by collecting survey data that includes pedigree information, phenotypic and health findings, and descriptions of seizuring activity; buccal swabs will also be collected for the isolation of DNA for future reference. The data will then be statistically analyzed to determine the genetic parameters controlling seizuring activity in the Poodle and Giant Schnauzer. If the analyses suggest that a single gene exists with a significant impact on idiopathic epilepsy, the next step would be to develop an unique genetic marker linked to that gene because genetic markers can assist breeders in selecting breeding stock that have a lower likelihood of passing on a genetic disorder. Determining the mode of inheritance and the heritability of idiopathic epilepsy will permit breeders to make more informed, health-based breeding decisions with the goal of minimizing the incidence of epilepsy in their breeds.

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