AKC Canine Health Foundation Parent Club Health Conference

Report of the Health Committee – 2010

While it did not occur in 2010 the big news has been the release of the long awaited research report on the association of the “meatmouth” mutation copy number with FSF. Validation studies are currently underway to verify the usefulness of a genetic blood test to (1) predict the potential risk for FSF in a particular individual and (2) to help breed away from the “meatmouth” mutation. The article, “A Novel Unstable Duplication Upstream of HAS2 Predisposes to a Breed-Defining Skin Phenotype and a Periodic Fever Syndrome in Chinese Shar-Pei Dogs” was published in PLoS Genetics in the March 2011 issue, Vol.7, Issue 3 and involved research groups in the United States, Sweden and Spain and 24 individual researchers including our own Dr. Linda Tintle. The article is available online at www.plosgenetics.org.

The breed health survey is continuously running

I recently returned from the AKC Canine Health Foundation 2011 National Parent Club Canine Health Conference held in St. Louis, Missouri, August 12-14. Topics included research updates on inflammatory bowel disease, degenerative myelopathy, molecular genetics of cancer, cytogenetics of cancer, canine-derived antibody fragments for targeted therapy of cancer, use of Vitamin D in cancer treatment, and the genetics of several canine heart problems – dilated cardiomyopathy, arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy and subaortic stenosis. A major theme was the One Health concept and Translational Medicine. By this the emphasis is on the very many similarities between dogs and humans in terms of their diseases, genetics, and treatments for disease – what is uncovered in human research can often be applied to the canine and vice-versa. There also were discussions about the funding of canine health research, the Canine Health Information Center (CHIC), the OFA, the use of genetic tests, the use of breed health surveys and opportunities for us breed-health representatives to dialog with AKC Canine Health Foundation personnel, the funded researchers and with each other. Lee Arnold, the Chairman of the CSPCA Charitable Trust was there in his capacity as the Chairman of the AKC Canine Health Foundation. We are so fortunate to have individuals such as Lee in our parent club who do such a great service to dog people and their dogs. The entire weekend conference was hosted by Purina and was a great time. The AKC Canine Health Foundation has a great web site at www.akcchf.org which provides info and links on canine research studies, genetic testing, and other projects.

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