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Mol Vis. 2007 Jan 31;13:125-32.

Evaluation of three canine gamma-crystallins (CRYGB, CRYGC, and CRYGS) as candidates for hereditary cataracts in the dachshund.

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  • 1Institute for Animal Breeding and Genetics, University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Foundation, Hannover, Germany. <>



We analyzed the gamma-crystallin genes CRYGB, CRYGC, and CRYGS in the dog and tested single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) for linkage and association with primary noncongenital cataract (CAT) in the dachshund, a popular dog breed. The crystallin genes may be involved in the pathogenesis of canine CAT as shown in humans and mice.


We sequenced all exons and their flanking intronic regions of the CRYGB, CRYGC, and CRYGS genes and in addition, the complete cDNA of these three genes using lens tissue from CAT-affected and unaffected dogs of several breeds. After examining BLASTN analyses, we compared the gene structure with the predicted genes in the current dog genome assembly and the orthologs of humans and mice.


The search for SNPs within these crystallin genes revealed a total of five polymorphisms. As both CAT-affected and unaffected dogs shared identical haplotypes, there was no cosegregation of the SNP alleles with the affected animals. Expression did not differ among CAT-affected and unaffected dogs.


The polymorphisms reported for CRYGB, CRYGC, and CRYGS can be excluded as causative mutations for the CAT phenotype in the wire- and smooth-haired dachshund. The canine cataract gene orthologs described here may serve as a valuable resource for further studies in other dog breeds to develop a canine model. Many different dog breeds are affected by CAT. The use of the SNPs presented in this paper can facilitate the screening of more dog breeds.

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