George Lust, PhD
Professor of Physiological Chemistry
The Albert C. Bostwick Foundation Laboratory
Our research has addressed the genetics, diagnosis, pathogenesis and treatment of hip dysplasia and osteoarthritis in dogs. This disease has a complex inheritance with contributions of several genes and environmental factors, e.g. food consumption, that affects the rate of growth. Signs of disease occur not only in hip joints, but similar pathologic changes also appear in shoulder and knee joints and in lumbar vertebral joints.
We are searching for a nucleotide sequence of DNA that can be the basis of a blood test for either normal or abnormal dorsolateral subluxation (DLS) of femoral heads, which is a component of hip joint stability. We have produced a pedigree that includes both disease-free and dysplastic dogs, and we are using the polymorphic microsatellites and linkage analysis to characterize quantitative trait loci (QTL) and fine mapping in an attempt to identify the genes related to trait expression together with coworkers Nancy Burton-Wurster and Rory Todhunter. We would like to identify the pertinent genes and ultimately the biochemical mechanisms responsible for development of hip dysplasia and osteoarthritis.