323: Mapping the Gene Responsible for Hypomyelination in Weimaraner Dogs

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $60,180
Dr. Ian Duncan, PhD, University of Wisconsin, Madison
July 1, 2004 - June 30, 2006
Breed(s): Weimaraner, Chow Chow
Research Program Area: Prevention

Abstract

The aim of this project is to map the gene responsible for a central nervous system (CNS) disorder in the Weimaraner breed. This disorder, which appears to be inherited as a single gene defect in an autosomal recessive trait, is widespread throughout North America. Affected dogs develop a severe tremor at ten to fourteen days with consequent high morbidity. Many pups show difficulty in ambulating and nursing, requiring intensive care. Although the tremor in many pups will lessen with time, some are euthanized due to the severity of signs at the time of diagnosis. Affected pups are also not suitable for breeding or the show ring. An identical disorder is also seen in Chow Chows. The long-term goal is to provide a screening test for heterozygotes and find the gene, thus helping to lower the prevalence of the disease. To begin with, we will concentrate on the Weimaraner as we have extensive pedigrees and DNA for this breed. Linkage analysis with microsatellite markers will be applied to map the location of the gene. Then, the linked marker(s) could serve as an indicator of the existence of the disease-related allele in the family.

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