Epilepsy Disease Study

*Belgian Tervuren*Belgian Sheepdog*English Mastiff*Giant Schnauzer*Miniature Poodle*Standard Poodle*Toy Poodle*

 


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DNA Sample Submission for Epilepsy Disease

Blood Submission Instructions and Questionnaire

 

Request a Buccal Swab Kit

 

 


What is Epilepsy?

 

A seizure is a convulsion caused by abnormal bursts of electrical activity in the brain. They may last from seconds to minutes.  Some characteristics of seizures will include jerking of the limbs, anxiety, salivation, vocalizing, and loss of bodily functions (urination/defecation).   Epilepsy can be caused by metabolic disorders, infectious diseases, brain injury, toxins, or brain tumors.  A genetic seizure condition can occur in dogs called idiopathic (of unknown cause) or inherited epilepsy.  Since a dog with idiopathic epilepsy shows no recognizable abnormalities, it is assumed to be an inherited condition in most breeds and demonstrated to be heritable in some breeds.  Treatment of seizures is usually two-fold which includes treatment of the underlying problem (infection, tumor, injury) and reducing or eliminating the seizure episodes with anticonvulsant medication. The FAQs link will answer many of your questions regarding the study.  We appreciate your support and interest in the study. 

 

The following link is a video that demonstrates a generalized seizure in an English Mastiff.  This generalized seizure exhibits the epileptic phenotype that we are looking for in the epilepsy breeds under study (Belgian Sheepdog, Belgian Tervuren, English Mastiff, Giant Schnauzer, Standard, Mini and Toy Poodles). We thank the owners of the English Mastiff for helping with this research.  We understand it is difficult to witness but their commitment to health is remarkable.

Generalized Seizure Video

 

For detailed information about canine epilepsy and seizures, please visit the following link to Understanding Your Pet’s Epilepsy from Dr. Dennis O’Brien at the University of Missouri, College of Veterinary Medicine:

 

 http://www.canine-epilepsy.net/BASICS/basics_main.html

 


A Note Regarding Submission of Blood Samples

 

Although we continue to collect DNA from buccal swab samples, newer research technologies prefer DNA extracted from blood samples.  Thus, we are seeking blood samples from affected and unaffected dogs.  Affected dogs with veterinary diagnosis can be submitted from dogs of any age.  For unaffected dogs, we especially need samples from dogs over the age of 7 years old that are free from the disease.

 

There is no fee for participating in this study although the owner bears the cost of blood collection and shipping of the sample to the laboratory. Some veterinarians may collect and ship samples at no charge for research purposes – please check with your veterinarian. 

   

In the event that your dog’s DNA from the blood sample is used directly in the development of a commercially available diagnostic test developed by this laboratory, the results of the test for that dog will be provided at no cost upon your written request following the availability of that commercial test.

 

Please note UC Davis Campus Holidays and Closures when sending a blood sample.


All disease information referenced from:

 UC Davis Book of Dogs

A Complete Medical Reference Guide for Dogs and Puppies

by the Faculty and Staff, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California at Davis ; 

edited by Mordecai Siegal, consulting editor, Jeffrey E. Barlough. 1st ed. New York : HarperCollins Publishers, 1995.