We are very pleased to announce the launch of a DNA test for Juvenile Brain Disease (also known as Juvenile Encephalopathy or Juvenile Epilepsy) in Parson Russell Terriers.

This DNA test is based on research performed in Professor Hannes Lohi’s canine genetics research laboratory at the University of Helsinki and Folkhälsan Institute of Genetics, Helsinki, Finland with the work funded by Wisdom Health and Genoscoper Laboratories, providers of the MyDogDNA® (Europe) / Optimal Selection™ (United States) test.

Juvenile Encephalopathy is a severe brain disorder, with an early onset of around 6-12 weeks. Affected dogs suffer from epileptic seizures, with the disease progressing rapidly causing irreversible brain damage.

As part of the study leading to the research discovery, about 400 Parson Russell Terriers were screened indicating a recessive mode of inheritance and a breed carrier frequency of 17% for the novel discovered mutation. The research project continues with further functional studies and the results will be published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal in the future. Details of the study and the discovered mutation will then be publicly available.

This gene discovery has enabled the development of a genetic test for the disease in Parson Russell Terriers, which is offered pre-publication to allow management of this lethal and fairly common condition in breeding programs.

For Parson Russell Terriers, the MyDogDNA® test includes not only the Juvenile Encephalopathy DNA test, but also screening for spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA), late onset ataxia (LOA), primary lens luxation (PLL), hyperuricosuria (HUU) and Autosomal Recessive Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (ARSCID). Additional test results for inherited traits (e.g., coat color, coat type and body size) and genetic diversity level are also included. Testing for degenerative myelopathy (DM) is additionally available in the United States (Optimal Selection™).

For test ordering, and to learn more about genetic testing for your dog and its breed, please visit: (Europe) or (United States).