Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Illinois study seeking biomarkers of canine diabetes, other diseases

07.10.2003


Even as the genetic blueprint for Shadow the poodle was being completed in Maryland, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign had been engaged in a long-term study that they hope will add functional gene information to the dog genome as well as benefit both canine and human health.



The still-in-progress Illinois study, in which researchers are measuring the effects of diet on gene expression in both weanling and geriatric dogs, is described in a paper in the October issue of the Journal of Nutrition. The scientists use their study as an example of how the use of emerging molecular tools, in general, will unlock the functional aspects of the genes being mapped in a variety of genomes.

"Genome sequencing allows us to understand health across animals," said Lawrence B. Schook, a professor of animal sciences and veterinary pathobiology at Illinois. "Dogs, like humans, get diseases associated with lifestyles. Thus not exercising and over-eating can result in obesity and diabetes. Information about human diseases can be used to treat dogs, and understanding dog diseases can be used to treat humans."


The dog-human bond goes deeper than mutual admiration. In a paper published last month in Science, researchers at the Institute for Genomic Research in Maryland scientists reported that their genome map of Shadow reveals 18,473 genes that correspond to the 24,567 annotated human genes. They also noted that the dog’s genome had more genetic similarities with humans than does the mouse -- the most-often used mammal for human health studies.

Schook and colleagues say in their paper that the cat-genome map available to date is even more similar to humans genetically than the dog. To date, Schook said, 263 feline and 451 canine genetic diseases have been identified.

Causes for diseases associated with a single gene can be uncovered with current biological techniques, Schook said, but finding the source of diseases associated with multiple genes "is a much more daunting task."

The emergence of mammal genomes provides fundamental gene-placement information, but now researchers are able to pursue functional genomics to unlock the mysteries of RNA and protein expression. Such research, Schook and colleagues write, will enhance our knowledge of metabolism and improve companion animal nutrition and health.

The dog, they say, "may be a very useful model, as many of the most common diseases of purebred dogs are also major health concerns in humans." They cite arthritis, cancer, deafness, heart disease, blindness, epilepsy and chronic metabolic diseases.

In the Illinois study, a diet of mostly high-quality animal-based ingredients is being compared with a mainly plant-based diet. Researchers are analyzing ribonucleic acid (RNA) samples to generate gene expression profiles of some 384 genes associated with metabolism and immune function. They also are monitoring digestion, fetal microbes and concentrations of fermented end products to measure the effects of dietary changes.

Illinois scientists hope the project will identify biomarkers that can predict diabetes, a disease that is appearing among the 40 percent of aging overweight dogs and cats in the United States, and other medical issues.

The general study of metabolic profiles of cells, tissues and organisms is designed to identify molecular markers that reflect nutritional and/or health status. Eventually, Schook said, such studies could result in animal feed that includes functional ingredients to help prevent and treat diseases in general or to target breed-specific genetic problems.

Schook’s collaborators are George Fahey, professor of animal sciences, and Kelly Swanson, a postdoctoral fellow in animal sciences. Pyxis Genomics of Chicago supports their research. Schook is a member of the board of directors of the privately held company that focuses on genetic research on natural disease resistance in food animals, preventive medicine for dogs and cats, food safety and security, and human therapeutics.

Jim Barlow | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.uiuc.edu/

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New technology for mass-production of complex molded composite components

23.01.2017 | Process Engineering

Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

23.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

The interactome of infected neural cells reveals new therapeutic targets for Zika

23.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>