If your dog has DNA banked in the CHIC DNA Repository and has had any significant health status changes since filling out the original phenotypic health survey, please remember to email the OFA with updates.  Include the dog’s name/number, as well as any updated diagnosis. As the number of researchers interested in this resource continues to increase, it is important to keep the health histories up to date, as that is typically the primary selection criteria for supplying samples to a given research proposal.  Email updates to: ofa@offa.org. Thank You!

Frequently Asked Questions about the CHIC DNA Repository

Mission Statement

The CHIC DNA Repository collects and stores canine DNA samples along with corresponding genealogic and phenotypic information to facilitate future research and testing aimed at reducing the incidence of inherited disease in dogs.

Objectives

  • Facilitate more rapid research progress by expediting the sample collection process.
  • Provide researchers with optimized family groups needed for research.
  • Allow breeders to take advantage of future DNA-based disease tests as they become available.
  • Foster a team environment between breeders/owners and the research community, improving the likelihood of genetic discovery.

Submission by Blood Sample

Blood is the gold standard for genetic material; the yield of DNA is sufficient for all research methods, including technologies on the horizon. Moreover, the stability and purity of the DNA is of the highest caliber, which offers many benefits. The drawback of banking blood samples is cost — drawing, shipping, storing, and extracting DNA from blood are more expensive endeavors than the alternative.

Submission by Cheek Swab

Cheek swab-derived DNA is a viable option for DNA banking. Although the yield and purity of this DNA is inferior to that obtained from blood, the material is suitable for most genetic approaches. The swabs are inexpensive, and the samples can be taken by the owner of the dog without the necessity of a veterinary office call. Swabs are easily shipped in standard envelopes using postal mail, and they can be stored for at least a decade at room temperature, so long as they are stored under conditions of low humidity. The success rate for obtaining DNA from a swab in the laboratory is roughly 98%, so multiple swabs should be submitted for each dog to ensure representation in the archive.

Laboratories

To establish and maintain the DNA Repository, the OFA has partnered with the Veterinary Genetics Lab at the University of California–Davis and the Animal Molecular Genetics Lab at the University of Missouri. UC Davis will receive and store all swab samples, and Missouri will receive and store all blood samples.

To participate in the DNA Repository, complete the application and submit it to the OFA. You will receive the appropriate swab or blood collection kit in the mail. The Health Survey portion can be completed online, printed, and mailed to the OFA with the DNA samples.