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Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2007 Aug;1109:109-16.

Veterinary autoimmunity: autoimmune diseases in domestic animals.

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Department of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, One Shields Ave., Davis, CA 95616, USA.


The first spontaneous animal model of autoimmunity was the New Zealand black mouse, discovered in 1959. Interestingly, although several models of induced autoimmunity were demonstrated in a variety of rodents, the recognition of autoimmune disease in dogs came somewhat later. Dog breeding and selection of traits within certain dog breeds have become an important enterprise with intensive husbandry and selection criteria being applied to each breed standard. This has resulted in breeding for specific phenotypic characteristics. This selection has inadvertently led to the propagation of a number of autoimmune diseases in dogs. For example, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), autoimmune hemolytic anemia and thrombocytopenia, autoimmune myasthenia gravis, and diabetes mellitus are now fairly common. In the final analysis, the appearance of autoimmunity in dogs reflects their breeding selection and illustrates the importance of genetics in the development of autoimmune disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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