A host of companies promote dog genetic tests to pet parents, breeders, and veterinary healthcare providers. The number of choices can be overwhelming. A new database will make the choice easier.
The recent proliferation of laboratory tests analyzing canine DNA has opened up a world of new information for researchers, breeders, veterinarians, and pet parents. But there are no harmonized, mandatory standards for the diagnostic laboratories running veterinary tests. Accreditation via different agencies is voluntary. Without harmonized quality standards, the performance of tests from different labs may be very different, and some tests may not be reliable.
The invention of testing methods has also outpaced the availability of the underlying research to the general public. As a result, pet parents, breeders, and veterinarians may not have all the information they need to make a decision about which tests to use and how to interpret the results.
In order to help the animal health community make informed decisions about genetic testing, the International Partnership for Dogs (IPFD) has created a database of 18 genetic testing providers (GTP) and 300 specific genetic tests. The database provides information about the quality standards, accreditation, and expertise of providers. Users of the database will also find detailed information about the clinical use and background for each specific genetic test. The database will help the user to understand the science that supports the genetic tests.
How it works
Users of the database may search by breed, by specific test, or by laboratory provider. The IPFD recommends that you get familiar with the site before running your first search. On the left of the home screen (circled in the screenshot below) you will find links to information about how to use the database, types of accreditation, breed-specific health recommendations, and basics of genetic testing.
Dog genetic tests have great potential to improve the health and well-being of dogs. Knowledge about genetic mutations in individual dogs can lead to better preventive medicine, more effective treatments, and responsible breeding practices. The IPFD is working to harmonize quality standards to make the promise of genetic testing for dogs a reality.
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