Archive for the ‘Irish Setter Health’ Category


January 26, 2013 @ 3:12 pm posted by michelle
Right now we are gathering more samples from Irish Red Setters with idiopathic epilepsy and for the research we are also gathering samples from over 7 year old healthy dogs and dogs with epilepsy in the close family. Adjoining the samples, we also gather general health information with a form and illness descriptions from the dogs with idiopathic epilepsy with a separate epilepsy questionnaire.
Instructions for taking the sample and sending it to us can be found at:
The epilepsy questionnaire can be found here in several different languages:
At the moment we have samples from 134 Irish Red Setters in our data base and six out of these have epilepsy. We have seven samples from Irish Red and White Setters. We have however done preliminary research in identifying epilepsy genes with samples from our partner in the United States of America. That research consisted of 75 dogs (40 with epilepsy and 35 comparison dogs). This also included samples from six Finnish dogs. With this set of samples we couldn’t find genes predisposing to epilepsy and we are now continuing our research by collecting new samples.
The Dutch Irish Setter Club has been in contact with us earlier and we have agreed on a sample collection with them. Our partner veterinarians from the University of Utrecht are coordinating the local sample collection. Samples from other countries can be sent directly to us.
Unfortunately I cannot say for certainty how many samples we need in this breed to find the genes causing epilepsy. On top of the actual amount of samples many other things have an influence, such as how “unified” the genetic background for epilepsy is in this breed. If the genes don’t play a major part or there are several genes behind the illness we need a lot more samples than if there was only one gene determining a majority of the illness. If the epilepsy symptoms are very mild or seizures are rare, it might be difficult for the owner to recognise the illness and thus there could be affected dogs among the healthy comparison group. That is another reason why the sample amount should be as high as possible so these aberrations wouldn’t play such an important role in the results.
Finding the gene is a sum of many things, e.g. the amount of samples, the amount of predisposing factors for epilepsy in the breed and the accuracy and reliability of the information related to the dogs in the research. Our goal could be to gather up samples from 80 to 100 dogs with idiopathic epilepsy and continue the research with this material.
Best regards
Lotta Koskinen
Lotta Koskinen, PhD
Folkhälsan Institute of Genetics,
Research Program for Molecular Neurology,
Department of Medical Genetics,
Department of Veterinary Biosciences
Biomedicum Helsinki 1 (room B322b)
P.O. Box 63, 00014 University of Helsinki


January 13, 2013 @ 3:41 pm posted by michelle


Announcing the official launch of the Canine Epilepsy Network web site!

This devastating problem can affect any breed. It is our hope that this site
can provide information for those who have an epileptic dog, or have produced
this problem and the research will help concerned breeders, to eliminate this
problem from their breed, while keeping all the good traits breeders strive

This site, sponsored by the University of Missouri College of Veterinary
Medicine, provides a resource for breeders, owners, veterinarians and
researchers concerned with canine epilepsy.

The site includes:

Basic epilepsy information

An invitation to participate in Canine Health Foundation funded research into
the genetics of inherited epilepsy

Updates on the research

A discussion panel

And links to additional information

We invite you to visit the site at:

We would welcome your comments.

If you need additional information not provided in this site, or have any
questions, please contact me. Thank you in advance for sharing this
information with others in your breed!

Liz Hansen
Co-ordinator of Veterinary Information
Dr. Gary Johnson’s Lab-Dept. of Vet. Path.
209A Connaway Hall
College of Veterinary Medicine
University of Missouri
Columbia, MO 65211
573-884-3712 (office)
573-884-5414 (department fax)


@ 3:37 pm posted by michelle



The Animal Health Trust in Newmarket, Suffolk, have a DNA Archive for Epilepsy and also other health problems.

If you or anyone you know, has an Epileptic dog, or a dog with any other health problem, then please click on the link below to find out how to obtain your kit to produce a DNA swab.


These are different kits to those provided for LOPRA rcd4 DNA swabs


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