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Molecular Genetic Study of Inherited Cataracts in the Miniature* and Toy* Poodle

The Poodle Club of America Foundation, Inc

and

Gustavo Aguirre, VMD, PhD
University of Pennsylvania

and

OptiGen, LLC

Background 

The Poodle Club of America Foundation, Inc has funded a three year research study to be carried out at the University of Pennsylvania and OptiGen, LLC to identify the molecular genetic basis of inherited cataracts, and develop a DNA-based diagnostic test that can be used to identify dogs that are genetically normal, carriers or affected. By judiciously using the DNA test information, breeders can minimize the risk of producing affected dogs while maintaining the genetic diversity of the breed.

In the Miniature and Toy Poodle some types of cataracts are an inherited condition which is characterized by loss of transparency in the lens when dogs are young adults/adult. Although some individuals use the term 'Juvenile Cataracts" to imply a genetically inherited defect, the appropriate term for the disease is Inherited Cataracts. Dogs with inherited cataracts are born with normal lenses, which then proceeds to degenerate over time, leading to visual impairment and then blindness later in life. The age range generally is variable, and the disease begins sometime between 2-5 years of age, and progresses; the rate of progression and severity of the disease can vary between affected dogs. About 6% of all Poodles are diagnosed with inherited cataracts. The mode of inheritance is not known, although autosomal recessive inheritance is likely; there are no gene-based tests available. We propose to carry out a focused study on inherited cataracts in Miniature and Toy Poodles with the aim of identifying the gene/mutation responsible for the disease.

Your help is needed 

To carry out this study we need the assistance of dog owners/breeders, as well as board certified veterinary ophthalmologists (ACVO, ECVO) so that samples for the research study can be definitively ascertained. We are very grateful for your interest in participating in the present research study. Please make sure that only one form is used for each study dog.

 

A research form for submitting samples and information for this study can be found by clicking Inherited Cataracts in Poodles Research Form.  The owner should complete the first section of owner and dog information. The second section of the form requests the examining ophthalmologist to provide brief clinical descriptions and, if possible, clinical photographs. Along with the completed form, we need a copy of the dog’s pedigree (5-6 generations), any current/previous eye exam records, and 3-5 ml of whole unclotted blood in EDTA to be sent to OptiGen 767 Warren Rd. Ithaca NY 14850. Please call OptiGen 607-257-0301 or email genetest@optigen.comwith any questions on sample submission.

 

 

NOTE: all the information provided for this study is CONFIDENTIAL and will not be disclosed.

* Please note we have focused this study in Miniature and Toy Poodles because it is in these varieties that inherited cataracts are more frequently found. However, if there are Standard Poodles diagnosed with inherited cataracts, we would be delighted to include samples from them as well for the research work.

 

 


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OptiGen®, LLC · Cornell Business & Technology Park · 767 Warren Road, Suite 300 · Ithaca, New York 14850
Tel: 607 257 0301 · Fax: 607 257 0353 · email: genetest@optigen.com or optigen@clarityconnect.com
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