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Congenital stationary night blindness is associated with the leopard complex in the miniature horse


Address communications to:
L. S. Sandmeyer
Tel.: (306) 966-1336
Fax: (306) 966-7174


Objective  To determine if congenital stationary night blindness (CSNB) exists in the miniature horse in association with leopard complex spotting patterns (LP), and to investigate if CSNB in the miniature horse is associated with three single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the region of TRPM1 that are highly associated with CSNB and LP in Appaloosas.

Animals studied  Three groups of miniature horses were studied based on coat patterns suggestive of LP/LP (n = 3), LP/lp (n = 4), and lp/lp genotype (n = 4).

Procedures  Horses were categorized based on phenotype as well as pedigree analysis as LP/LP, LP/lp, and lp/lp. Neurophthalmic examination, slit-lamp biomicroscopy, indirect ophthalmoscopy, and scotopic flash electroretinography were performed on all horses. Hair samples were processed for DNA analysis. Three SNPs identified and associated with LP and CSNB in the Appaloosa were investigated for association with LP and CSNB in these Miniature horses.

Results  All horses in the LP/LP group were affected by CSNB, while none in the LP/lp or lp/lp groups were affected. All three SNPs were completely associated with LP genotype (χ2 = 22, P << 0.0005) and CSNB status (χ2 = 11, P < 0.0005).

Conclusions  The Miniature Horse breed is affected by CSNB and it appears to be associated with LP as in the Appaloosa breed. The SNPs tested could be used as a DNA test for CSNB until the causative mutation is determined.