RESEARCH INTO EPILEPSY
Research into Inherited Epilepsy in Italian Greyhounds – your help needed
The Italian Greyhound Club is asking all members, and other owners of pure-bred, pedigree Italian Greyhounds, to help with the research being carried out by The Animal Health Trust into Inherited Epilepsy in Italian Greyhounds. The Italian Greyhound Rescue Charity identified the need for this research programme and has contributed financially towards the research.
Inherited Epilepsy, or Idiopathic Epilepsy, is caused by an abnormality in the brain that leads to repeated seizures. It usually develops in affected Italian Greyhounds between the ages of 3½ – 6 years old and is distressing for both the affected Italian Greyhounds and their owners.
The AHT research is aimed at identifying the genes responsible for Inherited Epilepsy, and it’s critical that the AHT build-up a DNA database of Italian Greyhounds in the UK. DNA samples from Italian Greyhounds that are affected by seizures are needed.
If the AHT is successful in identifying the gene responsible for Inherited Epilepsy, it means that we could protect our beautiful breed from this distressing condition in generations to come.
More DNA samples are needed from Italian Greyhounds affected by seizure. You can help by taking a swab from the cheek of your Italian Greyhound, a simple and painless process that takes less than a minute, and sending it in for inclusion in the research programme.
As stated above, in particular the research requires DNA samples from pure-bred, pedigree Italian Greyhounds that are affected by seizures. All research is carried out in the strictest confidence and the AHT does not share genetic information about any dog with anybody except that dog’s owner.
How to take part:
1. Email firstname.lastname@example.org and request a DNA testing kit (supplied free of charge)
2. Take a swab from the cheek of your Italian Greyhound
3. Send the swab to the Animal Health Trust with a copy of the IG’s pedigree and completed health history questionnaire form
4. If your Italian Greyhound is not affected by Epilepsy but develops symptoms in the future, you will need to inform the AHT (details in the testing kit)
Other questions answered:
When will I get the results?
There are no results yet as we are in the process of building up the DNA database in order that the AHT can identify the gene/s responsible. They do know that epilepsy is carried by different genes in different breeds of dogs.
My dogs are already DNA profiled so I don’t need to do anything further?
This is not connected to the epilepsy research and just means that the particular dog can be identified by their genotype making up their DNA profile. Please submit a cheek swab to take part in the research.
Will the research cost me money?
The only cost at the moment is a first class stamp. Unlike other DNA tests that can cost anything from £24-£70.00 and once the research into inherited epilepsy is complete, and a DNA test has been developed, the AHT will happily provide the results of any dogs that were used in the research, free of charge, to that dog’s owners upon request. So it is in your and the your dogs’ best interests to take part now.
How can I find out more information?
Contact Helen Lister at the Italian Greyhound Rescue Charity who is coordinating with the AHT.
Tel: 01539 443343