The collection of scientific data is of the highest importance;
helping all those invested in canine health to understand the
prevalence and heritability of specific disorders, identify the
genetic status of dogs prior to breeding and to develop effective
treatments. This article aims to provide information on how
the Kennel Club is helping to support and promote research into
Founded in 1987,
The Kennel Club Charitable Trust has, to date, donated
approximately £6.5 million to support, amongst other things, a
diverse range of research projects, including such topics as;
simple inherited canine disorders, oncology, Chiari
Malformation/Syringomyelia, epilepsy, cardiac disease, arthritis
and deafness, to name but a few.
Furthering research at the Animal Health Trust
The Kennel Club Charitable Trust invested £1.2 million in The
Kennel Club Genetics Centre at the Animal Health Trust (AHT),
enabling the collection and storage of DNA for future use (11,000
dogs to date), Genome-wide association studies and the
identification of, and means by which to test for, genetic
mutations found in 29 breeds (38,000 dogs tested to date through
the AHT's DNA testing facility). Five years on, the Kennel
Club Charitable Trust has committed a further £1.6 million to
further the research carried out at the centre.
In 2013, The Kennel Club provided the AHT with an interest-free
loan of £1.5 million to help with the construction and development
of The Kennel Club Cancer Centre at the Animal Health Trust.
The Centre contributes to the AHT's well-established cancer
research programme and brings together the expertise of their
clinical oncology team, molecular scientists and geneticists to
investigate cancers in animals.
To further promote and encourage research and to recognise
innovative scientific investigations, The Kennel Club Charitable
Trust, alongside Vernon and Shirley Hill, founders of Metro Bank,
have created the
International Canine Health Awards, the largest veterinary
awards in Europe. The awards offer a funding programme to
each recipient of the Student Inspiration Award (£10,000), the
International Prize in canine health (£40,000) and the Lifetime
Achievement Award (£10,000).
Promoting studies and helping to recruit
The Kennel Club has recently developed an online communication
resource known as
Bio-acquisition Research Collaboration (BARC), which helps
bring researchers and clinicians together. BARC acts as a central
platform for researchers to request the biological samples they
need to undertake their research.
The Kennel Club has recently developed further means by which to
assist researchers recruit for their studies, via publicity and
promotion through social media (Kennel Club Facebook page and
Twitter account), The Events, Seminars and
Surveys section on the Kennel Club website, BARC, Kennel Scope
and most importantly, by utilising our registration database
collaboratively with appropriate research collaboration to
contact registered owners of particular breeds.
Publication of results
The new Canine Genetics and
Epidemiology journal,launched in April 2014,is a peer-reviewed,
open access, online publication containing research and review
articles relating to all aspects of canine genetics and
epidemiology. This international journal aims to encourage
public understanding of science, with each paper published
including key "take home messages" for non-specialists, bridging
the gap between breeders, clinicians and scientists.
For further information on how the Kennel Club can assist
researchers, please visit the vets and
researchers tab on the Kennel Club website.