2387‐MOU: Hereditary Deafness in Dogs – Genomic Studies in English Setters Using Full Sibling Pairs

Grant Status: Open

Grant Amount: $12,960
George Strain, PhD, Louisiana State University
September 1, 2017 - August 31, 2018
Breed(s): English Setter
Research Program Area: Neurology

Abstract

Hereditary deafness associated with white pigmentation occurs in several dog breeds. The mechanism of inheritance is unknown, but does not appear to be simple Mendelian. Numerous studies to determine the mode of inheritance and locate the causative gene(s) have thus far failed.
The investigators will use a unique modified twin study approach in an effort to determine the mode of inheritance and locate the causative gene(s). Full‐sibling littermates will be identified, where one puppy has normal hearing and one is deaf. Like human twins, full siblings should have very similar DNA, which will reduce the variability of the DNA samples when compared to studies of unrelated dogs. The study of pairs of English Setters will be added to an ongoing study examining differences in Dalmatian and Australian Cattle Dog pairs. Identifying candidate deafness genes will be an important breakthrough to understanding deafness in dogs and people, with a goal to establish a genetic test to reduce or eliminate deafness in these canine populations.
 
Funding for the research is provided through the collaborative efforts and generosity of the English Setter Association of America. The AKC Canine Health Foundation supports the funding of this effort and will oversee administration of funds and scientific progress reports.

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