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Title: The genetics of canine atopic dermatitis
Author: Wood, Shona
ISNI:       0000 0004 2701 7355
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2010
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Canine atopic dermatitis (cAD) is a common and severe pruritic, inflammatory skin disease that can be considered a naturally-occurring, spontaneous model of human Atopic Dermatitis (hAD). The genetics of cAD are poorly understood and therefore the aim of this project was to investigate the genetic factors involved in the pathogenesis of cAD and to identify specific gene associations with cAD within and between dog breeds. It was hoped that this study would further strengthen the evidence that dogs are a suitable model hAD. Using dogs as a model to study the genetic basis of AD is advantageous because dog breeds form genetically isolated populations exhibiting strong linkage disequilibrium (LD). In contrast to humans where LD across the genome is weak (10-100 kb), domestic dog breeds have strong LD which extends over long distances (0.8 -5 Mb). This is highly advantageous in genetic studies because fewer genetic markers and smaller sample sizes are needed to find disease associations in dogs. To study the genetic basis of cAD a dual approach of candidate gene association study and genome wide association study (GWAS) was used. This gave not only a novel unbiased approach but also used information from previous studies on which gene selection was based. Therefore increasing the likelihood that the causative genes involved in cAD pathogenesis could be identified. This thesis demonstrated altered mRNA expression in 54 genes out of 22,000 transcripts by mRNA microarray in cAD. Further to this qPCR was used to confirm the microarray results and quantify gene expression in potential cAD candidate genes. This approach identified 11 genes with altered expression in cAD. The qPCR results were further correlated 2 with the clinical outcomes: Canine Atopic Dermatitis and Severity Index (CADESI-03) and number of responses on intra-dermal allergen tests. Eleven novel SNPs and 1 novel microsatellite were identified by transgenomic WAVE analysis. The microsatellite was further typed in 659 dogs and but no association with cAD was found. A GWAS with 22,362 SNPs was performed. The significant results were validated by Sequenom along with the SNPs from the candidate gene study (literature selected genes) in 659 dogs across 8 breeds. In total, 232 SNPs across 54 genes and 41 intergenic regions were genotyped on Sequenom. From this 45 putative associations were found in various breeds. A large number of these associations had relevant functions to AD and/or previous association with hAD.
Supervisor: Carter, Stuart Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: SF Animal culture ; RL Dermatology