Berner Christmas Boxes 2010
to benefit Berner Cancer Research

Proceeds from the sale of these boxes will be donated to

the AKC CHF Berner Lover’s fund.

Where the money goes!

Everyone is so generous when we have our fundraisers to raise money to help our wonderful breed. We have raised a lot of money over the years to fight cancer, and it has all gone to reaearch cancer in Bernese Mountain Dogs. We have raised money through our Willem Wijnberg AKC CHF Cancer Fundraisers and other fundraisers specifically for fighting cancer in our Berners. On October 30, 2010 I authorized Erika Werne, from the AKC Canine Health Foundation to take $25,000 from our Berner Lovers' Donor Advised Fund in support of Grants #1410A and 1410B being done by Elaine Ostrander at the National Human Genome Research Institute in the USA and Catherine Andre at the University of Rennes in France. I asked Elaine and Catherine to write something that I could share with Berner Lovers about their research. I just got this note from them:


Lay Summary Nov 23rd 2010

Elaine Ostrander, Ph.D. and Catherine Andre, Ph.D.

While rare in the general canine population, histiocytic cancers occur at a high incidence in a small number of breeds, most notably Bernese mountain dogs (BMD) and flat-coated retrievers (FCR). Primarily through the generosity of grants funded by the AKC-CHF, we have identified two genomic regions that associate with histiocytic cancer in the BMD and two regions similarly associated in the FCR. This represents a major step forward in our understanding of the disease and is likely to shed light on similar conditions in humans as well.

Critical to the next stage of the study will be our efforts to pinpoint the exact mutations that cause the disease in both breeds, and to get that work published as quickly as possible. From our work a better understanding of the gene families involved in developing histiocytic cancers as well as the underlying pathology, will evolve. In addition, we hope to identify the source of tissue specificity in the disease. That is, why do dogs with specific mutations get histiocytic cancers as opposed to other kinds of cancer? We have also collected a large pedigree and surveyed large litters of BMD. This epidemiological analysis indicates that Bernese mountain dogs are affected by many types of cancers. The work that we are doing on histiocytic sarcoma will help in understanding additional cancer susceptibilities such as lymphomas or mast cell tumors which arise from related cell types. Finally, we hope that genetic tests will eventually develop from the foundations laid by this work so that healthier, more long-lived dogs can be bred.

In the next and final stages of our work we sincerely hope that the breed clubs will remain valuable and important partners, both in the United States and Europe. We truly could not make progress without you. We will continue to accept samples from affected dogs and ask, as we have in the past, that you provide detailed pedigrees and clinical information with the samples. We also ask that, whenever feasible, you provide us with tumor samples. We believe that this final push will take us across the finish line in terms of understanding how this terrible disease is inherited. We have come so far and made so much progress, now let’s work together to get across the finish line! Thank you!

In the United States samples may be sent to:

Gretchen Carpintero-Ramirez
50 South Drive, Building 50, Room 5347
Bethesda, MD 20892-8000

In France, please contact:

Catherine Andre, Ph.D.
Genetique et Development
2 Avenue du Professeur Leon Bernard
35043 Rennes Cedex, FRANCE
Tel:(33) 2 23 23 45 09
FAX (33) 2 23 23 44 78


For more information

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to benefit Berner Cancer Research

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