The GPRA-project August 2010

Status from the GPRA-project, august 2010.

As many of you are aware of, the research to find the gene which cause GPRA in shelties has started.

The Norwegian Veterinarian High School (NVH) has employed the researcher, Anne Caroline Wiik, only for this project. It is her job just to find the sick gene that develops into GPRA if it is doubled (i.e. from both the mother and the father). The Norwegian Exploratory Council have, together with the money already collected for this Project, given enough money for further research for the period needed to find the gene.

Anne Caroline Wiik already has a doctorate on finding the gene for dayblindness in the Dachshound, she is therefore very much qualified for this job since she has experience about research in eyes.

Professor Frode Lingaas will still be the main responsible person for this Project.

There also will be cooperation with DVM, PhD Ernst-Otto Ropstad, employed at NVH, a specialist in eye diseases, and also Swedish eye specialists.

As earlier mentioned, retinopathy can be a present eye disease in Shelties. This disease easily can be mixed up with GPRA. There are several different diagnoses of retinopathy. This research will also include retinopathy, since it is important to survey the likeness between these two diseases. Swedish study on retinopathy will be included as they have experience in this.

Breeders responsibility

At the Norwegian Shetland Sheepdog Club's Annual meeting in 2000 it was decided that the Norwegian Shetland Sheepdog Club should start collecting money for research, and also collecting bloodsamples from GPRA-dogs and their closest family. It is obvious that breeders must be willing to eyetest both their breeding stock and older Shelties, in particular if any suspicion of reduced sight. Only eye testing of dogs can help us to get an answer about this disease.

The GPRA-project will, together with the Club's Breeder council, in the future ask that shelties from a few lines get eye tested, and we assume this will be accepted with a positive attitude.

When the gene is identified, there will be a test that will tell if a dog is carrier of the GPRA-gene or not. Such a test will make breeding much easier for everyone, with a larger selection to choose from for breeding.

Please don't hesitate to take contact with the GPRA-committee if any questions.

August 2010:

The Norwegian Shetland Sheepdog Club's GPRA-Committee

Account number to the GPRA-project in Norway:
Address for bank transfer from abroad:
The PRA-Project, Norsk Shetland Sheepdog Club
Den Norske Bank, Farmannsgaten 2, N-1600 Fredrikstad, Norway
Account number: 5010.05.65517 - Swift-address: DNB ANO KK FRE

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