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The all-in-one test for breeders

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As any conscientious dog breeder will attest, an intimate understanding of a breeding dog’s qualities and faults-- and how a potential sire or dam of a litter can best contribute to the improvement of a breed -- is a time-honoured and worthy goal. When it comes to assessing whether or with whom to breed a dog, the relatively recent access we now have to a wealth of genetic information provides breeders with a powerful addition to their decision-making toolkit. Many dog breeders in mainland Europe and the UK, and indeed across the globe, are already familiar with the MyDogDNA™ panel of tests that reveals an unparalleled view of inherited factors that contribute to a litter’s health and appearances.

 MyDogDNA™, part of the Wisdom Panel™ family of genetic testing products, has been a leader in the canine genetics testing field for a decade. The MyDogDNA™ panel of genetic tests is built on years of scientific expertise by a dedicated team of academic researchers, veterinarians and strong partnerships with kennel clubs, canine health registries and breed clubs across the world. With over 200 tests for inherited disorders, including many of the most widely distributed canine disorders such as prcd-PRA, Collie Eye Anomaly, and MDR1 Medication Sensitivity included in the MyDogDNA™ panel, it provides one of the most cost effective and powerful tools a breeder could ask for.

The panel of tests available on MyDogDNA™ is ever expanding as, through our own discoveries as well as through partnership with academic research teams, we add tests for new genetic variants that can provide dog breeders with even greater understanding of their dog’s genetic makeup. Our scientific team is devoted to working closely with dog breeders in a quest to identify as many underlying genetic factors as possible that contribute to the health and wellbeing of our canine companions and to this end, we encourage all of our dog breeding clients to complete the short health and behavior surveys. Our aim in this is to help move the field of canine genomics even further towards preventing inherited disorders as well as understanding more fully how these wonderful creatures come to display the unique sets of traits and behaviors that differentiate them all. Through your participation and intimate knowledge and expertise as a breeder, you can help provide us with unique insights and help us to discern underlying genetic patterns in these areas.

We at MyDogDNA™ adhere to the highest standards in laboratory quality and test validation. All MyDogDNA™ tests include multiple replicates of each test to ensure the highest confidence in every reported test result. Our tests are validated using reference controls of samples known to contain 0, 1 or 2 copies of the genetic variant being assayed. These reference controls are typically obtained directly from the research teams that identified the specific genetic variants being tested and thus provide the highest confidence that the specific genetic assay is being accurately performed. In the event that control samples are not available such as for very rare or likely eradicated diseases, we use synthetically generated control samples.

 Access to reliable genetic information and helping to educate breeders on the significance and interpretation of genetic test results is a high priority for us at MyDogDNA™. Our test results are recognised by all canine health registries. In addition to the interactive online reports, a pdf formatted “Technical Report” identifying the specific “copy number” of the gene variant as well as its interpretation (“Clear” for 0 copies, “Notable” for 1 copy of a recessive condition and “At Risk” for 2 copies of a recessive condition – or 1-2 copies of a dominant condition) is provided. Disorders that are known to be significant to the specific breed being tested are segregated to the top of the technical report. This portion of the report may be easily printed or shared electronically with health registries and others.

The family of Wisdom Panel products, including MyDogDNA™, has now tested over one million dogs and this has yielded exceptional insights into the distribution of hundreds of genetic disorders across breeds—as described in a recent article by the MyDogDNA™ team of scientists: Genetic prevalence and clinical relevance of canine Mendelian disease variants in over one million dogs. This paper represents the largest-ever single study of dogs to date and in addition to disease variant frequencies, it explores the relationship between genetic diversity across breeds and mixed breed populations. Our scientific team continues to explore ever more complex genetic variations in dogs with the aim of someday helping breeders prevent some of the more intractable disorders such as cancer, hip dysplasia and epilepsy. Historically, breeders and their clubs’ health and genetics committees have been crucial partners in fostering canine genetic discoveries. We welcome all dog breeders to join us in this scientific journey!