Dwarfism in Miniature Horses: New Study Published

Researchers identified found mutations in the gene aggrecan—the major structural protein of cartilage associated with dwarfism in Miniature Horses.
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dwarfism in miniature horses
Dwarf horses have defects that can seriously the health, including breathing problems, malformed mouths that cause eating difficulties, and abnormal bone growth leading to chronic soundness issues. | Photo: iStock

John Eberth, PhD candidate and researcher in the genetics laboratory at the University of Kentucky (UK) Gluck Equine Research Center, published results from work he conducted on dwarfism in Miniature Horses in the July issue of Animal Genetics, an international journal of immunogenetics, molecular genetics, and functional genomics of economically important and domesticated animals.

The study, “Multiple alleles of ACAN associated with chondrodysplastic dwarfism in Miniature horses,” was conducted by Eberth; Katheryn Graves, PhD, professor and director of the Animal Genetic Testing and Research Laboratory; James MacLeod, VMD, PhD, John S. and Elizabeth A. Knight Chair and professor; and Ernest Bailey, PhD, professor, all from the Gluck Center.

Eberth and colleagues found mutations in the gene aggrecan—the major structural protein of cartilage associated with dwarfism in Miniature horses. This research also allowed the team to develop tests to identify dwarfism in Miniature Horses

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