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Labrador Retrievers with Exercise Induced Collapse have a faulty gene

EIC, or exercise-induced collapse, is an ailment that afflicts Labrador Retrievers while exercising. Symptoms include weakness in the hind limbs, collapse and even death.This ailment affects 3-5% of Labradors, the most common dog breed in the world.

Researchers at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine have identified a mutation in the dynamin 1 gene as being highly associated with EIC. The dynamin 1 protein helps maintain normal function of the nerves that drive the muscles, especially during exercise. The mutation of this gene results in faulty communication between the nerves and muscles, leading to weakness and collapse.

Researchers are excited about this finding, as it is the first naturally occurring mutation in this particular gene that has ever been discovered.Two of the researchers involved, Dr. Shelton and Dr. Taylor, have been searching for the cause of EIC for 13 years, not knowing whether it was caused by an abnormality in the cardiovascular, muscular or nervous system.

These same researchers estimate that up to 30% of Labrador Retrievers carry this gene and a simple blood test can help prevent breeders from breeding two animals that carry the mutated gene. Chesapeake Bay Retrievers and Curly Coated Retrievers also carry the dynamin 1 mutation. Pet owners can have their dogs tested by asking their veterinarian to submit blood to the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

University of Minnesota (2008, September 22). Gene Linked To Common Ailment In Labrador Retrievers Identified. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 29, 2008.

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Veterinary Technical Services Department

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