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The use of historical health records at The Seeing Eye in genome-wide association studies for canine health traits presented by Katy M. Evans

A dataset of over 220 thousand genetic markers spanning the canine genome has been compiled for over 1,000 dogs to date at The Seeing Eye with the intention of using genomic markers to inform selection and management decisions. Dogs genotyped include current and former breeders, birth cohorts of individual breeds (German Shepherds, Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers and Labrador/Golden Retriever crosses) and cases and controls of some specific conditions. These genotypes were used in genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for health traits for which dogs could confidently be assigned as cases or controls. GWAS for 37 health traits were performed, the breakdown of which is: dental (13), ocular (8), dermatologic (7), orthopedic (2), gastrointestinal (4), connective tissue (1), cartilaginous (1), and muscular (1).  Genomic principal component analysis was conducted to validate individual breed designation and overall population structure. Of the traits passing multiple testing corrections, 9 were dental, 7 were ocular, 1 was orthopedic, 4 were dermatologic, 1 was muscular, and 1 was cartilaginous.  Pseudo-heritability estimates ranged from 0 to 0.62 across the varying traits with a mean of 0.16 and median of 0.09.  In all, 62% of the health traits showed significant genetic association and are being explored further for candidate genes and considered for fine mapping.  The current GWAS highlighted SNPs potentially influencing traits in multiple breeds whereas future studies will seek breed specific associations. These findings increase our knowledge of the genetics of these health traits and provide a foundation for future genomic selection programs

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