In February 2018 the GSHF and 3 UK breed clubs agreed to fund a number of UK participants in the UC Davis genetic diversity project, since Giants had been added to research phase I. The research maps and assesses the breeds overall genetic diversity, and provides each dog with an individual analysis compared to the rest of the breed. The purpose of the project is to provide an additional tool for breeders to help increase genetic diversity, which may also have an impact on improving health and longevity.
What’s it all about
Inbreeding, bottlenecks and selective breeding in the past are a few factors that can restrict a breed’s gene pool and may eventually lead to increased inherited diseases, weaker immune systems, cancers, reproductive problems, and higher infant mortality. The genetic diversity research provides information on the diversity status of the breed as a whole, so it tells us how related our dogs actually are, and shows the overall level of diversity present within the breed. It will also provide individual dogs with specific data representing their diversity compared with the rest of the breed’s population. The information differs greatly to the Coefficient of Inbreeding (COI), which is a statistical probability of risk, the COI for a litter will be the same for each puppy, whereas the genetic information provided by the DNA may tell a different story, and may help to identify dogs with rare pockets of genes that could be used to improve the gene pool.
Results so far
The full breed analysis report from UC Davis can be found on the following link
Public dogs that have been uploaded to the Better Bred website can be viewed on the link below along with a summary for the breed