Thursday, July 27, 2017

Gene in Dogs Helps Researchers Identify a Rare Genetic Disorder

An article has been published on a rare skin disorder called dermatomyositis, which affects about 10 in 1 million people. The disorder is characterized by patches of exposed skin, lesions across the face, and expressionless eyes. It has also been identified in dogs, specifically in collie and Shetland breeds, making it likely a genetic disorder. The research in dogs who have the disorder may give insight about what triggers the disease, such as environmental influences paired with genetics. Dogs who have the disease can produce normal offspring if the correct environmental conditions are present. This might give us clues about how the disease occurs in humans and may even allow us to eradicate the disease completely if we know the risk factors in dogs. However, it is a rather complex disorder affecting many genes rather than just one dominant or recessive gene, making it very hard to pinpoint. There is, furthermore, evidence that suggests a strong correlation between variations on chromosomes 10 and 31. If this is true, then eventually we will be able to breed out the disease i collies and Shetland breeds and perhaps eradicate the disease in humans as as well.

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