Friday, May 23, 2014

Canine Hip Dysplasia

TiHo scientists unravel genes responsible for canine hip dysplasia. Canine hip dysplasia (CHD) plays a central role in the selection of breeding animals ever since modern dog breeding began. This inherited condition is common in all dog breeds as well as in mongrels. Researchers at the Institute for Animal Breeding and Genetics at the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover Foundation (TiHo), has identified important genetic variants and their interrelated pathways for the pathogenesis of CHD in German Shepherds. The scientists genotyped more than 1000 German Shepherds and screened a large number of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) for their association with CHD. Professor Dr. Ottmar Distl and his doctoral student Lena Fels have published their research results in the international online journal.

CHD is caused by a malformation and instability of the hip joints. The first attempts to breed against CHD started at the end of the 1960s due to the severity of this disease and its general significance for the health of dogs. The sole basis of the breeding programs was X-rays of both hip joints. Dogs with significant and severe changes were excluded from breeding. Systematic preventative programs have been established by most dog breeding associations and have become an integral part of the selection programs in purebred dog breeding.

The genetic mechanisms responsible for CHD involve the formation of cartilage and bone. The metabolic pathways show significant similarities with osteoarthritis and chondrodysplasia in humans. “Research of CHD is of fundamental importance in terms of understanding the processes that can lead to osteoarthritis in humans”, says Distl, head of the Institute for Animal Breeding and Genetics at TiHo Read the entire article

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