Afghan Hound DNA Research

The Animal Health Trust UK stores DNA from various breeds for future research purposes and they have agreed to store DNA of the Afghan Hound, this can only be for the good of the breed in the future as samples can be collected from healthy and sick dogs. We would like to extend our thanks to the AHT for coming up with this amazing offer and we are well on the way with collecting funds for the Afghan Hound Health Fund, an online auction wll be coming soon and please feel free to suggest any other fundraising events as it appears that the Kennel Club will donate quite a high percerntage of funds if we can show we are serious in helping with the funding of DNA health research and start to raise money, and who knows it may not even too far in the distant future when they can start working and coming up with specific DNA health tests for afghan hounds

We will ask the payment of £5 a swab kit when this is provided as the AHT would prefer to have the donations and swab kits returned in bulk, we have made an intitial order of 40 swab kits but we think they will be in high demand, if anyone would like to pre-order a swab kit please contact myself Pam Croft Email: or Telephone 01424 439246 or Muriel Boydell 01424 420595

The AHT are producing a letter on their headed notepaper detailing everything which we will make available to anyone who would like to see a copy and obviously details given would be confidential, if you need any more information please feel free to contact me

Below quote from Cathryn Mellersh PhD

Dear Pam,

We do store DNA from various breeds now, for future research purposes, and we would be happy to do that for the Afghan Hound.

We can store DNA collected either as blood samples (collected fom UK dogs only when the dog is having blood drawn for a veterinary purpose) or from cheek swabs.  The amount of DNA we can extract from cheek swabs is usually sufficient for our purposes, providing owners follow the instructions we provide.

We can provide cheek swab kits - these include 4 cheek swabs, full instructions an a submission form that each owner must sign giving the AHT permission to use the sample in future research.  The submission form details the information we need to collect for each dog sampled.  Brief details will be asked on the form or any current conditions

Because we currently do not have any funds in place to cover our costs we would ask for a donation of £5 per swab kit.  We can supply swab kits to individuals, or (our prefernce) to a willing volunteer from the Afghan community who would be happy to give out the kits.  The AHI have volunteered and been accepted as the point of contact for co-ordinating the supply and return of the supply kits to the AHT

Upon receipt of each sample we will log the details of each dog into our database, and will store the DNA in our freezers.

Each quarter, upon request, I will provide a brief progress report, in terms of the number of samples we have received and any research being carried, to anybody who requests a copy.

If, at any time in the future, we were in a position to initiate a research project using the samples we had collected we would need to seek additional funds to cover that research - the £5 donation requested for each swab kit covers only the logging of sample details and the sample storage.

Best wishes


Cathryn Mellersh PhD
Canine Genetics Research Group Leader
Animal Health Trust

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