Genetic improvement of hip-extended scores in 3 breeds of guide dogs using estimated breeding values: Notable progress but more improvement is needed.
ABSTRACT: Two hip quality phenotypes-a hip-extended score assigned by a board certified radiologist and the PennHIP distraction index-were analyzed to estimate genetic parameters and to calculate estimated breeding values used for selecting replacement breeders. Radiographs obtained at 12-18 months of age were available on 5,201 German Shepherd Dogs, 4,987 Labrador Retrievers and 2,308 Golden Retrievers. Obtained by fitting a two-trait model using Bayesian techniques, estimates of heritability for the hip-extended score were 0.76, 0.72, and 0.41 in German Shepherd Dogs, Labrador Retrievers, and Golden Retrievers, respectively, while estimated heritabilities for distraction index were 0.60, 0.66 and 0.59, respectively. Genetic correlations between the two hip quality measures were -0.28 in German Shepherd Dogs, -0.21 in Labrador Retrievers, and -0.29 in Golden Retrievers. Genetic selection for improved hip quality based upon the hip extended score phenotype began in 1980. Among first generation puppies, 34% of 273 German Shepherd Dogs, 55% of 323 Labrador Retrievers, and 43% of 51 Golden Retrievers had an Excellent hip extended score. After 8 generations of selection, mostly based on estimated breeding values derived from the hip extended score, over 93% of 695 German Shepherd Dogs, 94% of 528 Labrador Retrievers, and 87% of 116 Golden Retrievers received an Excellent hip extended score. With respect to PennHIP distraction index values among these same dogs, median values were at or above 0.30 for all 3 breeds meaning that half or more of dogs possessing the Excellent hip-extended-score phenotype remained susceptible to developing the osteoarthritis of canine hip dysplasia. Genetic improvement of the hip-extended-view phenotype to its desired biological endpoint left a surprising proportion of dogs expressing sufficient joint laxity to place them in an osteoarthritis at-risk state as they age. Only by directly applying selection pressure to reduce distraction index was marked reduction in joint laxity noted.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Canine hip dysplasia (HD) is a common polygenic trait characterized by hip malformation that results in osteoarthritis (OA). The condition in dogs is very similar to developmental dysplasia of the human hip which also leads to OA. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:A total of 721 dogs, including both an association and linkage population, were genotyped. The association population included 8 pure breeds (Labrador retriever, Greyhounds, German Shepherd, Newfoundland, Golden retriever, Rottweiler, Border Collie and Bernese Mountain Dog). The linkage population included Labrador retrievers, Greyhounds, and their crosses. Of these, 366 dogs were genotyped at ?22,000 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) loci and a targeted screen across 8 chromosomes with ?3,300 SNPs was performed on 551 dogs (196 dogs were common to both sets). A mixed linear model approach was used to perform an association study on this combined association and linkage population. The study identified 4 susceptibility SNPs associated with HD and 2 SNPs associated with hip OA. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE:The identified SNPs included those near known genes (PTPRD, PARD3B, and COL15A1) reported to be associated with, or expressed in, OA in humans. This suggested that the canine model could provide a unique opportunity to identify genes underlying natural HD and hip OA, which are common and debilitating conditions in both dogs and humans.
Project description:Our recent study on the effects of neutering (including spaying) in Golden Retrievers in markedly increasing the incidence of two joint disorders and three cancers prompted this study and a comparison of Golden and Labrador Retrievers. Veterinary hospital records were examined over a 13-year period for the effects of neutering during specified age ranges: before 6 mo., and during 6-11 mo., year 1 or years 2 through 8. The joint disorders examined were hip dysplasia, cranial cruciate ligament tear and elbow dysplasia. The cancers examined were lymphosarcoma, hemangiosarcoma, mast cell tumor, and mammary cancer. The results for the Golden Retriever were similar to the previous study, but there were notable differences between breeds. In Labrador Retrievers, where about 5 percent of gonadally intact males and females had one or more joint disorders, neutering at <6 mo. doubled the incidence of one or more joint disorders in both sexes. In male and female Golden Retrievers, with the same 5 percent rate of joint disorders in intact dogs, neutering at <6 mo. increased the incidence of a joint disorder to 4-5 times that of intact dogs. The incidence of one or more cancers in female Labrador Retrievers increased slightly above the 3 percent level of intact females with neutering. In contrast, in female Golden Retrievers, with the same 3 percent rate of one or more cancers in intact females, neutering at all periods through 8 years of age increased the rate of at least one of the cancers by 3-4 times. In male Golden and Labrador Retrievers neutering had relatively minor effects in increasing the occurrence of cancers. Comparisons of cancers in the two breeds suggest that the occurrence of cancers in female Golden Retrievers is a reflection of particular vulnerability to gonadal hormone removal.
Project description:The purpose of this study was to use high accurate mass metabolomic profiling to investigate differences within a phenotypically diverse canine population, with breed-related morphological, physiological and behavioural differences. Previously, using a broad metabolite fingerprinting approach, lipids appear to dominate inter- and intra- breed discrimination. The purpose here was to use Ultra High Performance Liquid Chromatography-High Resolution Mass Spectrometry (UHPLC-HRMS) to identify in more detail, inter-breed signatures in plasma lipidomic profiles of home-based, client-owned dogs maintained on different diets and fed according to their owners' feeding regimens.Nine dog breeds were recruited in this study (Beagle, Chihuahua, Cocker Spaniel, Dachshund, Golden Retriever, Greyhound, German Shepherd, Labrador Retriever and Maltese: 7-12 dogs per breed). Metabolite profiling on a MTBE lipid extract of fasted plasma was performed using UHPLC-HRMS.Multivariate modelling and classification indicated that the main source of lipidome variance was between the three breeds Chihuahua, Dachshund and Greyhound and the other six breeds, however some intra-breed variance was evident in Labrador Retrievers. Metabolites associated with dietary intake impacted on breed-associated variance and following filtering of these signals out of the data-set unique inter-breed lipidome differences for Chihuahua, Golden Retriever and Greyhound were identified.By using a phenotypically diverse home-based canine population, we were able to show that high accurate mass lipidomics can enable identification of metabolites in the first pass plasma profile, capturing distinct metabolomic variability associated with genetic differences, despite environmental and dietary variability.
Project description:Valued for trainability in diverse tasks, dogs are the primary service animal used to assist individuals with disabilities. Despite their utility, many people in need of service dogs are sensitive to the primary dog allergen, Can f 1, encoded by the Lipocalin 1 gene (LCN1). Several organizations specifically breed service dogs to meet special needs and would like to reduce allergenic potential if possible. In this study, we evaluated the expression of Can f 1 protein and the inherent variability of LCN1 in two breeds used extensively as service dogs. Saliva samples from equal numbers of male and female Labrador retrievers (n?=?12), golden retrievers (n?=?12), and Labrador-golden crosses (n?=?12) were collected 1 h after the morning meal. Can f 1 protein concentrations in the saliva were measured by ELISA, and the LCN1 5' and 3' UTRs and exons sequenced.There was no sex effect (p?>?0.2) nor time-of-day effect; however, Can f 1 protein levels varied by breed with Labrador retrievers being lower than golden retrievers (3.18?±?0.51 and 5.35?±?0.52 ?g/ml, respectively, p?<?0.0075), and the Labrador-golden crosses having intermediate levels (3.77?±?0.48 ?g/ml). Although several novel SNPs were identified in LCN1, there were no significant breed-specific sequence differences in the gene and no association of LCN1 genotypes with Can f 1 expression.As service dogs, Labrador retrievers likely have lower allergenic potential and, though there were no DNA sequence differences identified, classical genetic selection on the estimated breeding values associated with salivary Can f 1 expression may further reduce that potential.
Project description:Neutering (including spaying) of male and female dogs in the first year after birth has become routine in the U.S. and much of Europe, but recent research reveals that for some dog breeds, neutering may be associated with increased risks of debilitating joint disorders and some cancers, complicating pet owners' decisions on neutering. The joint disorders include hip dysplasia, cranial cruciate ligament tear or rupture, and elbow dysplasia. The cancers include lymphoma, mast cell tumor, hemangiosarcoma, and osteosarcoma. In previous studies on the Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever and German Shepherd Dog, neutering before a year of age was associated with increased risks of one or more joint disorders, 2-4 times that of intact dogs. The increase was particularly seen with dogs neutered by 6 months of age. In female Golden Retrievers, there was an increase in one or more of the cancers followed to about 2-4 times that of intact females with neutering at any age. The goal of the present study was to expand and use the same data collection and analyses to cover an additional 29 breeds, plus three varieties of Poodles. There were major breed differences in vulnerability to neutering, both with regard to joint disorders and cancers. In most cases, the caregiver can choose the age of neutering without increasing the risks of these joint disorders or cancers. Small-dog breeds seemed to have no increased risks of joint disorders associated with neutering, and in only two small breeds (Boston Terrier and Shih Tzu) was there a significant increase in cancers. To assist pet owners and veterinarians in deciding on the age of neutering a specific dog, guidelines that avoid increasing the risks of a dog acquiring these joint disorders or cancers are laid out for neutering ages on a breed-by-breed and sex basis.
Project description:Canine hip dysplasia is one of the most prevalent developmental orthopedic diseases in dogs worldwide. Unfortunately, the success of eradication programs against this disease based on radiographic diagnosis is low. Adding the use of diagnostic genetic tools to the current phenotype-based approach might be beneficial. The aim of this study was to develop a genetic prognostic test for early diagnosis of hip dysplasia in Labrador Retrievers. To develop our DNA test, 775 Labrador Retrievers were recruited. For each dog, a blood sample and a ventrodorsal hip radiograph were taken. Dogs were divided into two groups according to their FCI hip score: control (A/B) and case (D/E). C dogs were not included in the sample. Genetic characterization combining a GWAS and a candidate gene strategy using SNPs allowed a case-control population association study. A mathematical model which included 7 SNPs was developed using logistic regression. The model showed a good accuracy (Area under the ROC curve = 0.85) and was validated in an independent population of 114 dogs. This prognostic genetic test represents a useful tool for choosing the most appropriate therapeutic approach once genetic predisposition to hip dysplasia is known. Therefore, it allows a more individualized management of the disease. It is also applicable during genetic selection processes, since breeders can benefit from the information given by this test as soon as a blood sample can be collected, and act accordingly. In the authors' opinion, a shift towards genomic screening might importantly contribute to reducing canine hip dysplasia in the future. In conclusion, based on genetic and radiographic information from Labrador Retrievers with hip dysplasia, we developed an accurate predictive genetic test for early diagnosis of hip dysplasia in Labrador Retrievers. However, further research is warranted in order to evaluate the validity of this genetic test in other dog breeds.
Project description:Hip dysplasia is an important and complex genetic disease in dogs with both genetic and environmental influences. Since the osteoarthritis that develops is irreversible the only way to improve welfare, through reducing the prevalence, is through genetic selection. This study aimed to evaluate the progress of selection against hip dysplasia, to quantify potential improvements in the response to selection via use of genetic information and increases in selection intensity, and to prepare for public provision of estimated breeding values (EBV) for hip dysplasia in the UK. Data consisted of 25,243 single records of hip scores of Labrador Retrievers between one and four years old, from radiographs evaluated between 2000 and 2007 as part of the British Veterinary Association (BVA) hip score scheme. A natural logarithm transformation was applied to improve normality and linear mixed models were evaluated using ASREML. Genetic correlations between left and right scores, and total hip scores at one, two and three years of age were found to be close to one, endorsing analysis of total hip score in dogs aged one to three as an appropriate approach. A heritability of 0.35±0.016 and small but significant litter effect (0.07±0.009) were estimated. The observed trends in both mean hip score and mean EBV over year of birth indicate that a small genetic improvement has been taking place, approximately equivalent to avoiding those dogs with the worst 15% of scores. Deterministic analysis supported by simulations showed that a 19% greater response could be achieved using EBV compared to phenotype through increases in accuracy alone. This study establishes that consistent but slow genetic improvement in the hip score of UK Labrador Retrievers has been achieved over the previous decade, and demonstrates that progress may be easily enhanced through the use of EBVs and more intense selection.
Project description:The dog is considered to be a useful biomedical model for human diseases and disorders, including obesity. One of the numerous genes associated with human polygenic obesity is MC4R, encoding the melanocortin 4 receptor. The aim of our study was to analyze polymorphisms and methylation of the canine MC4R in relation to adiposity. Altogether 270 dogs representing four breeds predisposed to obesity: Labrador Retriever (n?=?187), Golden Retriever (n?=?38), Beagle (n?=?28) and Cocker Spaniel (n?=?17), were studied. The dogs were classified into three groups: lean, overweight and obese, according to the 5-point Body Condition Score (BCS) scale. In the cohort of Labradors a complete phenotypic data (age, sex, neutering status, body weight and BCS) were collected for 127 dogs. The entire coding sequence as well as 5' and 3'-flanking regions of the studied gene were sequenced and six polymorphic sites were reported. Genotype frequencies differed considerably between breeds and Labrador Retrievers appeared to be the less polymorphic. Moreover, distribution of some polymorphic variants differed significantly (P?<?0.05) between small cohorts with diverse BCS in Golden Retrievers (c.777T>C, c.868C>T and c.*33C>G) and Beagles (c.-435T>C and c.637G>T). On the contrary, in Labradors no association between the studied polymorphisms and BCS or body weight was observed. Methylation analysis, using bisulfite DNA conversion followed by Sanger sequencing, was carried out for 12 dogs with BCS?=?3 and 12 dogs with BCS?=?5. Two intragenic CpG islands, containing 19 cytosines, were analyzed and the methylation profile did not differ significantly between lean and obese animals. We conclude that an association of the MC4R gene polymorphism with dog obesity or body weight is unlikely, in spite of the fact that some associations were found in small cohorts of Beagles and Golden Retrievers. Also methylation level of this gene is not related with dog adiposity.
Project description:Background:Dogs have human-directed social skills that allow them to communicate and cooperate with humans. We have previously identified two loci on chromosome 26 associated with human contact-seeking behaviors during an unsolvable problem task in laboratory beagles (Persson et al., 2016). The aim of the present study was to verify the single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in additional dog breeds. We also studied how the allele frequencies have changed during domestication and recent selection. Methods:Dogs of two breeds, 61 golden retrievers and 100 Labrador retrievers, were phenotyped and genotyped, and 19 wolves were genotyped. The Labrador retrievers were divided into common and field type by pedigree data to make it possible to study the effects of recent selection. All dogs were tested in an unsolvable problem task where human-directed social behaviors were scored. DNA from dogs (buccal swabs) and wolves (blood or brain tissue) was analyzed for genotype on two of the previously identified SNP markers, BICF2G630798942 (SNP1) and BICF2S23712114 (SNP2), by pyrosequencing. Results:There was genetic variation for SNP1 in both dog breeds whereas the wolves were fixed for this polymorphism, and for SNP2 there was variation in both dogs and wolves. For both SNPs, Labrador retriever types differed significantly in allele frequencies. We found associations between SNPs and human-directed social behavior in both dog breeds. In golden retrievers, SNP1 was associated with physical contact variables, for example, with the duration of physical contact with the owner (F 2,56 = 4.389, p = 0.017). SNP2 was associated with several behavioral variables in both breeds, among others owner gazing frequency in both golden retrievers (F 2,55 = 6.330, p = 0.003) and Labradors (F 1,93 = 5.209, p = 0.025). Discussion:Our results verify the association between the previously identified SNPs and human-directed social behavior scored in an unsolvable problem task. Differences in allele frequencies suggest that these loci have been affected by selection. The results indicate that these genomic regions are involved in human-directed social behavior in not only beagles but in other dog breeds as well. We hypothesize that they may have been important during dog domestication.
Project description:Dog breeds are a consequence of artificial selection for specific attributes. These closed genetic populations have metabolic and physiological characteristics that may be revealed by metabolomic analysis.To identify and characterise the drivers of metabolic differences in the fasted plasma metabolome and then determine metabolites differentiating breeds.Fasted plasma samples were collected from dogs maintained under two environmental conditions (controlled and client-owned at home). The former (n = 33) consisted of three breeds (Labrador Retriever, Cocker Spaniel and Miniature Schnauzer) fed a single diet batch, the latter (n = 96), client-owned dogs consisted of 9 breeds (Beagle, Chihuahua, Cocker Spaniel, Dachshund, Golden Retriever, Greyhound, German Shepherd, Labrador Retriever and Maltese) consuming various diets under differing feeding regimens. Triplicate samples were taken from Beagle (n = 10) and Labrador Retriever (n = 9) over 3 months. Non-targeted metabolite fingerprinting was performed using flow infusion electrospray-ionization mass spectrometry which was coupled with multivariate data analysis. Metadata factors including age, gender, sexual status, weight, diet and breed were investigated.Breed differences were identified in the plasma metabolome of dogs housed in a controlled environment. Triplicate samples from two breeds identified intra-individual variability, yet breed separation was still observed. The main drivers of variance in dogs maintained in the home environment were associated with breed and gender. Furthermore, metabolite signals were identified that discriminated between Labrador Retriever and Cocker Spaniels in both environments.Metabolite fingerprinting of plasma samples can be used to investigate breed differences in client-owned dogs, despite added variance of diet, sexual status and environment.