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Where did you learn about syringomyelia?

This is the first time I have heard of it
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"It is a brilliant book to give to parents/family who don't really understand what this is all about."

-Annabelle G

Genome Research Update


FTLOO is helping to find the gene/s for Chiari-like Malformation (CM) and Syringomyelia (SM).

Zoha Kibar (CHU Sainte-Justine Research Centre, Montreal) and Dr Clare Rusbridge and Penny Knowler (StoneLion Veterinary Hospital, Wimbledon London) are collaborating to find the genetic basis of  CM in the Griffon Bruxellois breed and SM in Cavalier King Charles in order to identify and characterise gene defects for Chiari in humans. 

CMSM is a complex genetic trait which makes the task of identifying individual genes involved very difficult. Fundamental to the genetic research is the collection of DNA from dogs with and without the condition. FTLOO helped to fund every step of the investigations by funding the cost of MRIs which are the only means of diagnosing CM and SM. Accurate interpretation of the images provides the essential phenotypic information required for genotyping. Read more about this here

Syringomyelia is a progressive/and or late onset condition –
FTLOO with the help of the Cavalier Club of Canada and the Matheson MRI Centre Mississauga Ontario funded the ‘Over 6 year ‘ MRI project which provided valuable information about the incidence of SM in older dogs and helped breeders identify suitable clear lines.   


Photos Compliments of Marybeth Squirel


Unfortunately virtually all Cavaliers have CM so it is not possible to use this breed to find the genes associated with this condition. CMSM has been identified in the Griffon Bruxellois but not all dogs have CM. FTLOO funding helped the initial research into CM in this breed. This investigation focused on finding families of Griffons with different degrees of affectedness to further understand the inheritance of CM and SM as well as providing essential DNA. Radiographs were taken of the dogs in addition to MRIs and analysis of data has suggested a possible hypothesis for CM.  Read more about this here

Photos Compliments of Lee Pieterse

A summary and update of research  in CMSM given by Dr Rusbridge in a talk to the CKCS Club last fall can be found  here

An update of the genetic research into canine chiari can be found here


Many thanks to Penny Knowler for contributing this page.

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