DNA Testing for Pets and Domestic
- Parentage Verification
- Estimation of Relatedness/Genetic Variation
- Identification of DNA Markers Linked to Performance
Traits or Genetic Disorders
- Registry/Individual Identity
- Breed Differentiation
The ability to address questions of identity in pets and domestic animals is now
dramatically enhanced. The DNA profile test offered by Therion International is more
powerful than conventional blood protein analysis because it detects DNA-sequence
information which is highly variable. This technology provides a sensitive method for
parentage verification, individual identification and the estimation of relatedness. It
can also be used to screen for markers linked to performance traits or genetic disorders.
Following are descriptions of four of the many pet and domestic animal genetics
projects which have been conducted by Therion.
|The DNA profile banding patterns from several
thoroughbred horses are shown to the right. The paternity of the foals was in question as
each mare was bred to the same two stallions (A and B). To complicate matters, stallion B
is the son of stallion A. Several genetic markers that were observed in the DNA profiles
of both foals were not present in the DNA profiles of their respective dams (green bands).
These markers must have been contributed by the sire. Stallion B is therefore clearly
shown to be the true sire of the foals.
|A greyhound bitch was believed to have been
inseminated by two males. To verify sire identity, DNA profiles were produced from the
dam, her pups, and the male to which she had been purposely bred. The DNA probe used was
OPT-05 and a portion of the autoradiograph is shown to the left. Note that a genetic
marker (yellow band) found in the DNA profile of pup 1 appeared neither in the dams
profile nor in that of the alleged sire. This confirmed that the female had been
inseminated by a second male and excluded the preferred male as sire of the pup. Other
genetic markers and additional DNA probe assays corroborated this conclusion.
Estimation of Genetic Relatedness
|A breeder of macaws had recently purchased
three young and allegedly unrelated birds (one male and two females) to add to her
breeding flock. Since the male and female B were constantly observed together, the breeder
wondered whether she should allow these birds to become a mated pair. DNA-profile testing
was conducted to determine the relatedness of the three macaws. The DNA profile results in
the figure to the right show a high proportion of shared bands or genetic markers (blue
arrows) between the male and female B. It was concluded that the male and female B were
probably related (possibly siblings) and therefore should not be paired.
|A private breeder of reptiles needed to
determine the paternities of a clutch of python snakes. The mother of this clutch had been
bred to two males and because multiple paternities are common in reptiles, it was
necessary to identify and partition the offspring into full sibling groups. The results
were generated using probes OPT-03 and OPT-05 and enzyme HinF I. Visual
inspection of the DNA profiles showed two subsets of similar banding patterns among the
young snakes (figure at left). Computation of band-sharing coefficients corroborated that
the clutch of offspring could be separated into these two distinct subsets. The average
percentage of shared bands within both the first subset of offspring (blue bands) and the
second subset of offspring (red bands) was 63%. Between the two groups the average band
sharing was 26%. It was therefore concluded that each subset consisted of a group of full
siblings, each with a different sire.
Non nucleated RBC
0.1 - 2 ml
5 - 10 ml
purple top Vacutainer
overnight on ice packs
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