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Today’s topic is very interesting and may arouse a lot of people’s interest. Have you ever thought about why huskies have blue eyes? If yes, then we will discover for you this amazing fact.
A dog DNA startup company that is called Embark, based out of Boston, Massachusetts, and Ithaca, New York, have finally found out the mystery about these cute dogs.
“The study is the first consumer genomics study ever conducted in a non-human model, as well as the largest canine genome-wide association study to date” reports Phys.org.
Why huskies have blue eyes?
The secret is in the dogs’ 18th chromosome. A duplication on chromosome 18, near the ALX4 gene, was discovered to be strongly associated with blue eye color.
According to www.mnn.com “The ALX4 gene plays an important role in mammalian eye development, so this association is not entirely out of left field. And interestingly, the study also found this same genetic quirk in non-merle Australian shepherds, which also tend to have blue eyes”.
[Using genetic data from the pets of our customers, combined with eye colors reported by customers for those same animals, we have discovered a genetic duplication that is strongly associated with blue eye color. This study demonstrates the power of the approach that Embark is taking towards improving canine health,” explained Aaron J. Sams of Embark. “In a single year, we collected enough data to conduct the largest canine study of its kind. Embark is currently pursuing similar research projects in a range of morphological and health-related traits and we hope to continue to use our platform to move canine genetics and health forward in a very real way.]
Researchers used a different kind of panel of 6,070 genetically tested dogs for this new study, which was performed in partnership with Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.