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Discussion Starter #1
I just got my embark dna test back and my puppy is carrier free and clear on the 160 genectic defects which have caused doberman owners hearache for many years. Futher more if our litter is clean I have to assume my male and female are also clean. Is any one familar with the embark test? Is any breeders offering embark tested dobe puppies? When will we clean up the mess the greedy breeders have chosen to do to our breed. We all have to stand together and demand clean genectics thru these new tests. Thanks for any comments
 

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They test for the one known potential DCM contributor gene, the DCM2 has not been released from NC State yet, so that's the only place you can get that one done. Unfortunately neither of these genes is predictive of health, or illness as relates to DCM. I think for a while we're going to have to do things the old fashioned way, hips, elbows thyroid function, CERF and annual heart function testing. Watch our pedigrees for diversity and try to avoid linebreeding on early death or other illness, it can be done, it just takes commitment from all breeders across the board, and a willingness to look generations down the road, instead of being concerned with producing our next big winner in whatever venue we prefer
 

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Actually, it looks like they just throw out a bunch of random tests. I seriously doubt that a Dobe would inherit something specific to Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. :rolleyesww:

Some health testing in Dobes is strictly genetic, like vWd. The genetics of that are pretty simple. The dog is one of three results, genetically clear, genetically a carrier, or genetically affect (which does not necessarily mean the dog is clinically affected).

Doberman DCM, on the other hand, has tests available for two out of an unknown number of markers. The PDK4 test came first, and the DCM2 test has just been released. Some dogs testing negative (clear) for the PDK4 marker were still dying from DCM, and some dogs that tested positive (affected) were unaffected by DCM. I've also heard (second, third, or possibly even fourth hand) that the test isn't accurate for European dogs. However, unscrupulous breeders were testing their dogs for PDK4, and advertising them as "cardio clear" without ever doing the recommended Holters and echoes, which can help catch early stage DCM.

So, people simply doing a $200 scatter-shot test won't "clean up the mess the greedy breeders have chosen to do to our breed". Instead, all it will do is encourage the same "greedy breeders" who tout their "Cadio clear, PDK4 negative" dogs to tout their "Embrace testing clear" dogs.
 

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^^ yup. i feel like this test was a waste of $200 (lol WOW).
 

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In hindsight it is not fair to say that "greedy breeders" caused the Cardio issues this breed find itself in today. Genetic testing is only giving a partial view and with out knowing all the facets of what is causing the issue, breeders are limited on what they can do to make large strides in cleaning the breed.
 

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And I just noticed my typo... I wrote "Embrace", like the insurance company, not "Embark"....
 

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I'll have to go look this one up but it looks about as useful from what's posted above as the incredibly inaccurate "genetic" tests for what breeds contributed to your pound puppy.

Too many people wanting an "easy" answer and when it comes to genetics there really aren't any easy answers.
 

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I'll have to go look this one up but it looks about as useful from what's posted above as the incredibly inaccurate "genetic" tests for what breeds contributed to your pound puppy.

Too many people wanting an "easy" answer and when it comes to genetics there really aren't any easy answers.
Hey! Those things are always 100% right. Ilka is clearly a Bulldog cross.

2016-5-30 Dogs & Yard DSC_0189 by Rosemary Elwell, on Flickr

:rolleyesww: (Hmmm... I might have strained an eyeball muscle there....)
 

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Hey! Those things are always 100% right. Ilka is clearly a Bulldog cross.

2016-5-30 Dogs & Yard DSC_0189 by Rosemary Elwell, on Flickr

:rolleyesww: (Hmmm... I might have strained an eyeball muscle there....)
BWAHAHAHAHA!!! Yeah, sure, Rosemary--and have I told you about this bridge I have for sale?

I remember when you first posted the results for Ilka--made me spit coffee all over the monitor screen...
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The embark dna test is a step in the right direction. Having 3 sets of dobes in the past 30 years I would rather have the dna test then none at all. I would like to know if dcm is possible and start my testing early then have my dog drop dead at 8 and not know! I'm not saying they are a 100% correct but it gives us a chance to get in front the medical problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
To the member that feels the test is a waste of money: I feel if it gives me a chance for early diagnostic testing resulting in early treatment its worth its weight in gold. Or would you rather not know of the possibility of dcm and have your dog drop dead unexpectedly?
 

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Dogs that test homozygous negative for both of the known markers for DCM in Dobes can still develop DCM. There are an unknown number of markers (humans have like 30). That's why annual holters and echoes are so important.
 

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At this point in time, both of the DNA tests that are available for DCM markers are really more for research purposes because they are not proving to be really indicative of the chances of getting DCM or not. It is nice to get the information, but there are too many unscrupulous breeders out there claiming "cardio free/clear" when that is not what the test means at all.
I don't know anything about the catchall DNA test you did - as it is not something that reputable breeders are using as far as I know. We study pedigrees for longevity and causes of death, do all the recommended testing, and then cross our fingers and pray. DCM is in every bloodline in every country they are bred in. We are nowhere close to being able to 100% predict the disease no matter what we do.
I test my dogs using cardiac ultrasound and 24 hour holters on a regular basis and have still lost 2 to sudden death (age 9 & 11).

So to me, the greedy breeders are the ones who do a quick DNA test and claim that their dogs don't have/won't get cardio. Shame on them!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
That's some great input thank you. I still feel having as much medical info on my boy is important as I just orders dcm2 test from nc state. One of the members mentioned the vmd type 1 test embark missed could someone explain what that is? I plan to call embark and ask them to include that and the dcm2 test if possible. They really are great people the haters should read more about them.
 

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Howdy, Sophie here! I noticed a couple of claims here that I wanted to clear up. First, let me say, we firmly believe that the best cure for a disease is prevention, and that's why we created our non-profit, The Doberman Diversity Project. To prevent a genetic disease, we need to know the genetics involved. Now, out of ALL the genetic testing possibilities in the world, we specifically chose to align with Embark because: #1 they offer the highest resolution DNA results on market #2 they graciously agreed to partner with us as a research initiative, which allows all Doberman owners enrolled in the Doberman Diversity Project to purchase tests at a discounted rate, making genetic testing much more affordable and lowering the barrier for Dobe owners/breeders #3 their quality control demands that they do not include anything on their panel unless it has >99% call rate, 100% specificity/sensitivity when a genotype is called. If you understand sensitivity/specificity, these are high standards! #4 they've agreed to take on Dobermans as a special project and help generate a Genome Wide Association Study to further explore the genetic underpinnings of Dobe-specific diseases. This is a golden key to understanding Doberman genetic diseases, like DCM. SO, with that all said, I think this helps to explain a couple of the issues brought up here:
1) All Dobermans are run on chips with vWD1. Due to Embark's high quality control (see above), they were still validating vWD1 at the time of their listing with OFA. Now that they've done that, all Dobes are run on chips with it.
2) DCM2 is not on the chips because the results of DCM2 haven't yet been published and cannot yet be validated by the scientific community. Remember, it's all about truth and quality control!
3) Is it only good for research? Nope. In addition to receiving your individual dog's gene-carrier status, you will also receive detailed analyses of your dog's inbreeding, including a karyogram (graphic of your dog's chromosomes) showing you exactly where in the DNA is your dog more or less inbred compared to the breed.

You know how folks always say: You can make an incredibly outbred dog with 2 inbred dogs? This is how. Dobe breeding has never been this smart. AND every dobe contributes to the Genome Wide Association Study for overall Dobe health research.
4) Breed mix ancestry: In the past, genetic testing labs were using a limited number of genetic markers, and it is possible, in the past with other companies, that breed mixes were misidentified. However, Embark is probably the most accurate identification tool because of its resolution and detail (see above). For more info on genetic markers and such, we hope to have answered it on our FAQs page: FAQs - THE DOBERMAN DIVERSITY PROJECT

As always, questions/concerns/ideas? I'm always here to chat!
 

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I assume you are referencing Fitzmar's post with this?

3) Is it only good for research? Nope. In addition to receiving your individual dog's gene-carrier status, you will also receive detailed analyses of your dog's inbreeding, including a karyogram (graphic of your dog's chromosomes) showing you exactly where in the DNA is your dog more or less inbred compared to the breed.
At this time, with a still as yet unknown number of markers for DCM, and with dogs testing clear for the two known who still develop DCM, I really don't see how testing for DCM can be considered anything but research at this point. And people who tout their dogs as being "DNA clear for cardio", but don't do holters and echoes on their dogs are doing puppy buyers a disservice, IMO.
 

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Sorry--I just don't feel the Embark gene test is sufficiently breed specific to be valuable for Dobes. The explanation offered about the cardio (DCM specifically) tests also really leave the situation wide open for the less than knowlegable and/or sleazy breeder to make these ridiculous claims about dogs who tested negative for two genes which are the only two known to have an effect on cardio in Dobermans being "clear".

This isn't accurate and since DCM is clearly a polygenetic disease it tends to lull folks who don't have a fairly good understanding of genetics into a very false sense of security.

I test my dogs as new test become available ONLY for their value as research tools (which also why I test all my dogs for all of the new tests as they become available--gives breeders a better look at laterals in their pedigrees as well as the direct lines) but I have a fairly good understanding of genetics in general and genetics in the Doberman in particular.

I think the money is better spent on Doberman specific gene tests (where available) and in proactive testing for things that aren't (like DCM) by doing Holters and echos regularly so that early cases can be treated appropriately.
 
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