DNA Testing POLICY CHANGE as of July 21, 2008 - In order to focus more attention on our research projects and the development of new DNA tests for a variety of inherited diseases, we are in the process of transferring our diagnostic testing service work to the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA). The newly developed Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) testing for many breeds is offered through OFA, and we have transferred the Neonatal Encephalopathy with Seizures (NEwS) test for Standard Poodles, as well as the Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis (NCL) test for American Bulldogs. Over the coming months we intend to transfer most of our other diagnostic services to the OFA.

Tests offered through OFA will not require a blood sample, but can be run using DNA collected using a kit which can be ordered online. DNA is collected using a special swab to gather cells from the buccal surface - the moist inner surface of the cheek inside the mouth. After collecting the cells, the swab is pressed onto a card with a specially treated surface which transfers the DNA to the card and makes it very stable at normal temperatures. The card is then sent by regular mail to the address supplied in the kit. After the test is run, results are emailed to you and a certificate is mailed. Although the cost of the test has increased to $65, the overall cost for most owners will be lower than it had been previously because there will no longer be the cost to collect and send blood samples requiring special handling and overnight delivery. In addition, the new testing fee includes automatic listing on the OFA website at no additional charge - previously, owners paid $15 to list results with OFA after receiving their results from us.