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2007 Canine Health Foundation National Parent Club Canine Health Conference St. Louis, Missouri October 19-21, 2007 Pro PowerPoint Presentation
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2007 Canine Health Foundation National Parent Club Canine Health Conference St. Louis, Missouri October 19-21, 2007 Proceedings and Summary. The Story So Far. Founded in 1995 Seventh biennial Parent Club Conference More than $20 million in research grants

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2007 Canine Health Foundation National Parent Club Canine Health Conference St. Louis, Missouri October 19-21, 2007 Pro

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2007 Canine Health Foundation

National Parent Club

Canine Health Conference

St. Louis, Missouri

October 19-21, 2007

Proceedings and Summary

the story so far

The Story So Far

  • Founded in 1995
  • Seventh biennial Parent Club Conference
  • More than $20 million in research grants
  • More than 2,000 researchers from Netherlands to California

The Canine Health Foundation

the story so far1

The Story So Far

  • American Kennel Club
  • Nestlé Purina PetCare Company
  • Canine Health Information Center (CHIC)
  • Orthopedic Foundation for Animals

Alliances Make It Happen

the story so far2

The Story So Far

  • Mission: To develop significant resources for basic and applied health programs with emphasis on canine genetics to improve the quality of life for dogs and their owners.

The Canine Health Foundation

the story so far3

The Story So Far

  • OAK grants
    • $12,000 to $250,000 in value + 8% overhead
    • Assessed annually and peer reviewed
    • $1.8 million in annual funding
  • ACORN grants
    • Maximum $12,000 + 8% indirect costs
    • More than 100 approved
    • $400,000 annual budget

Two funding categories

the story so far4

The Story So Far

  • Prevention
    • 78% of major grant money
    • Includes genomics research
  • Treatment
    • 13% of grant money
  • Cure
    • Stem cell treatments to reverse the effects of disease

Three areas of research

the story so far5

The Story So Far

  • “…Don’t eradicate good dogs from your breeding programs because they’re carriers…But that means knowing who is and who isn’t a carrier.”

Basic prevention principle

the story so far6

The Story So Far

  • Genetically, dogs and humans are about 85% similar
  • Breeding practises are responsible for many canine diseases
  • Research on Dobermans with narcolepsy has led to tests of a therapy that, if effective in dogs, could help 250,000 Americans

The human/canine connection

genetics primer
Genetics primer

The Story So Far

  • Phenotype is an animal’s appearance
  • Genotype is its genetic characteristics
  • The genotype is determined by animal’s DNA
  • Genes are regions on a DNA strand that govern the specifics of the genotype, like hair length
  • DNA strands are made of nucleotide bases that combine to form the template of a gene
genetics primer cont d
Genetics primer cont’d

The Story So Far

  • Canines have more than two billion nucleotide bases, and 20,000 unique genes, packaged in 76 DNA regions called chromosomes
  • Chromosomes come in pairs
  • Within the chromosomes, the two copies of each gene are called alleles
  • Each pair of genes is called a diploid, and each is responsible for a specific trait, like hair color

The Story So Far

  • Dogs have two alleles in each chromosomal pair
  • Alleles can be identical or different, dominant or recessive
  • In meiosis, a puppy receives one randomly selected allele from the pair of each of its parents, forming a new combination


  • There are about 400 domestic dog breeds, from 100-1,000 years old
  • Comparison of distantly related breeds that share a disease but little genetic information can reveal the most likely genetic source of the disease
  • Population studies allow researchers to learn a great deal from just one generation

Breeds and genetic study

recommendations for healthy breeds
Recommendations for

healthy breeds


  • Breed away from harmful alleles, before breeding for diversity
  • Overuse of one sire spreads harmful genes and eliminates positive ones from other good dogs
  • Genetic disease is controlled by reducing the frequency of dogs with defective genes
  • Genetic diversity is breeder diversity; we need a healthy range of opinions on the ideal dog


  • Strategies to encourage or discourage particular traits in dogs:
    • Inbreeding
    • Line breeding
    • Phenotypic breeding
    • Outcross breeding
    • Compensatory breeding

Approaches to breeding



  • Samples are the key to research
  • A central tissue sample repository will advance research rapidly
  • Collection sites are already established at:
    • Ohio State University
    • Colorado State University
    • University of Wisconsin-Madison

Canine Oncology and Genomics




  • Spaying and neutering prevent overpopulation
  • 56% of litters are unplanned
  • Neutering males reduces the risk of some diseases, increases the incidence of cruciate ligament injury
  • Spaying females reduces common, frequently fatal diseases, but increases the frequency of urinary incontinence

Canine reproduction



  • Immunity is part innate, part acquired
  • The acquired immune system remembers every antigen or organism it encounters
  • Vaccines stimulate the acquired immune system

Canine vaccination



  • Infectious vaccines:
    • Modified live vaccine
    • Vector vaccine
  • Non-infectious vaccines:
    • Inactivated or killed vaccine
    • Recombinant subunit vaccine

Canine vaccination cont’d

Canine Influenza Virus (CIV)

West Nile Virus



Infectious disease

  • Rabies
  • Intestinal Parasites
  • Brucellosis
  • Tularemia
  • Leptospirosis


  • CHF is helping to fund research projects for two eye diseases:
    • Ocular melanosis in Cairn Terriers
    • Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)

Canine ophthalmology



  • Signs that arthritis may cause canine cruciate rupture:
    • Roughening at edges of bone
    • Excess fluid within joint
    • Inflammatory cells in joint fluid
    • Bacteria present in many affected dogs

Cruciate rupture and arthritis



  • A genetic test for PHPT was successfully developed thanks to:
    • Samples from a variety of owners
    • Funding from CHF
    • Availability of technology

Hyperparathyroidism in Keeshonds

nutritional treatment

Nutritional Treatment

  • Four stages of intervention:
    • Basic feeding of a complete, balanced diet
    • Adding nutrients like vitamin D, copper, selenium
    • Adding probiotics and whey protein
    • Tailoring the diet to the dog’s individual needs

Nutrition and the

immune system

nutritional treatment1

Nutritional Treatment

  • Positive components in an active dog’s diet:
    • High fat
    • High protein
    • Antioxidants
    • Glucosamine
    • Omega-3 fatty acids

Nutrition for the active dog

nutritional treatment2

Nutritional Treatment

  • Good bacteria help the body by:
    • Improving overall nutrition
    • Promoting a healthy immune system
    • Helping to treat diarrhea

Benefits of a balanced GI tract

closing in on a cure

Closing in on a Cure

  • Stem cell research is being conducted for such diverse conditions as
    • Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM)
    • Spinal cord injuries
    • Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF)
    • Lipoprotein lipase (LPL) deficiency


closing in on a cure1

Closing in on a Cure

  • Adult stem cells exist in bone marrow, the liver, and the heart
  • Bone marrow stem cells have the potential to become nervous tissue, bone, or heart muscle
  • Tests show that stem cells injected into the heart remain there

Cardiology and stem cells

closing in on a cure2

Closing in on a Cure

  • Existence of cancer stem cells has been demonstrated
  • Cancer stem cells can self-renew, reproduce
  • Mutated stem cells may resist therapy, then metastasize
  • Better knowledge may lead to treatment

Canine cancer and

stem cells

closing in on a cure3

Closing in on a Cure

  • Golden Retrievers have…
    • A high rate of cancer
    • Predominance of specific cancers
    • A high rate of immune-mediated diseases
  • … indicating an inherited disposition for cancer.

Cancer at the breed level

closing in on a cure4

Closing in on a Cure

  • FACT: Even incurable cancers can be treated or managed
  • FACT:A “wait and see” attitude leads to tumors that are larger and likely to spread
  • FACT: Chemotherapy has few side effects and risks
  • FACT: Age is not a factor in treatment
  • FACT: Radiation rarely has side effects

Responding to canine cancer myths

closing in on a cure5

Closing in on a Cure

  • Much to learn about the effect of stem cells on cancer
  • Research funding is weighted toward prevention
  • Support of dog owners is needed

Are we ready for cytotherapeutics?

what s next

What’s Next?

  • Open Health Database and DNA repository
  • Uses test protocols set by Parent Clubs
  • Allows breeders to take advantage of future DNA tests
  • Enjoys enormous participation in sample submission

Canine Health Information Center

what s next1

What’s Next?

Orthopedic Foundation for Animals

  • Online survey
  • Current pilots: Labrador Retriever and Australian Cattle Dog
  • Gives Parent Clubs access to technological expertise
  • First come, first served
what s next2

What’s Next?

  • AKC Veterinary Outreach
    • Scholarships
    • College seminars
    • Internship program
  • AKC Veterinary Network
    • Bridges clubs and veterinary community
  • Public education
    • Provides resources to individuals, clubs

American Kennel Club Update

what s next3

What’s Next?

  • Dangerous dog laws
  • Cruelty to animals
  • Tethering
  • Breeding restrictions
  • Guardianship
  • AKC Canine Legislation Dept. can help! (919) 816-3720;

Canine Legislation

what s next4

What’s Next?

  • We need your support
    • Contributions
    • Volunteers to tell the story
  • Jeff Sossamon
  • (888) 682-9696

AKC-CHF Fundraising