Genetic trend of the junctional epidermolysis bullosa in the German shorthaired pointer in Italy

Vet Rec Open. 2021 Aug 19;8(1):e15. doi: 10.1002/vro2.15. eCollection 2021 Dec.


Background: Epidermolysis bullosa (EB) is a hereditary heterogeneous group of mechanobullous disorders caused by mutations in several structural skin proteins observed in both humans and animals. In this work, we report the incidence and the genetic trend of the junctional epidermolysis bullosa (JEB), a major type of EB, in the Italian German Shorthaired Pointer (GSPs) population in a 10 years span.

Methods: In this study, we monitored the genetic trend of JEB in the Italian population of the GSPs from 2009 to 2018 in 750 animals. The studied mutation was the insertion (4818+207 ins 6.5 kb) of repetitive satellite DNA within intron 35 of the LAMA3 gene.

Results: Allele frequencies showed a reduction of the mutated (C) allele during the years, with the only exception of 2017, when 13 dogs were diagnosed as carrier for the genetic pathology. A regression logistic analysis was performed, including sex, coat colour and their interaction. Our results showed that there was a statistically significant association with coat colour.

Conclusions: The simplicity and the low cost of the analysis for the detection of this pathology suggests that a deeper identification of carrier dogs will allow better breeding strategies and management, leading to a rapid JEB eradication.

Keywords: JEB; disease control; dog; molecular genetics.