German Warmblood Associations Include Testing for EquiSeq Genetic Variants in Genotyping Platform


Albuquerque, New Mexico

The International Association of Future Horse Breeding (IAFH), a group of five German Warmblood associations, has developed a large-scale genotyping platform (a SNP array) for breed improvement. They have added tests for the variants in EquiSeq’s Myopathy Panel to the array. Results will be available to horse owners through Generatio GmbH – Center for Animal Genetics, which holds the exclusive license for EquiSeq’s tests in the EU and the UK.

Below is a translation of their press release.

Horse breeders have health in mind

The health of the riding horses is important for every breeder. The International Association of Future Horse Breeding (IAFH) is dedicated to it. The focus is also on hereditary diseases such as PSSM2. The IAFH provides fundamental scientific work that leads to breeding measures to ensure the health of horses in the future.

With the availability of differentiated molecular genetic laboratory analysis, the possibilities to assess the genetic predisposition of individual horses are growing. This applies to all characteristics that have been influenced by hereditary factors in their form, regardless of whether they follow simple or complex inheritances and whether they relate to performance, appearance, or health. Especially for the monitoring of hereditary diseases, this means an extension of studies that enable genetic or genomic screening and thus represent a significant improvement.

At the turn of the year, a groundbreaking course was taken in this direction: by switching the routine pedigree check to a technology that relies on genetic markers (so-called single nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs for short), which are spread over the entire genetic material of the horse. This provides the basis for answering scientific questions and in-depth studies. In doing so, the IAFH’s close contacts and proven cooperation with partners from academia and business ensure that they make full use of the opportunities offered and thus fully assume their responsibilities towards their members. 

This includes a solid refurbishment based on carefully planned and long-term in-depth studies, which are particularly essential for late-stage and multi-layered hereditary diseases such as PSSM 2 (Polysaccharides Storage Myopathy Type 2). And it is precisely this complex of hereditary muscular diseases that is already in the sights of breeding: In conjunction with the holder of the European patent for the PSSM2 test panel, Generatio GmbH – Center for Animal Genetics, the IAFH is dedicated to the urgent issues that need to be clarified in order to secure and specifically support breeding decisions. In the strong network of IAFH shareholders, the riding horse breeders’ associations of the Oldenburg, Westphalia, Trakehner, Holsteiner and Oldenburg show jumping horses as well as the data centre VIT, the breeders are well equipped to be able to provide themselves with reliable information in the future.

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