Arginine to glutamine variant in olfactomedin-like 3 (OLFML3) is a candidate for severe goniodysgenesis and glaucoma in the Border Collie dog breed

Carys Pugh, Lindsay Farrell, Ailsa Carlisle, Stephen Bush, Adam Ewing, Violeta Trejo-Reveles, Oswald Matika, Arne de Kloet, Caitlin Walsh, Stephen Bishop, James Prendergast, Jonathan Rainger, Jeffrey Schoenebeck, Kim Summers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Goniodysgenesis is a developmental abnormality of the anterior chamber of the eye. It is generally considered to be congenital in dogs (Canis lupus familiaris), and has been associated with glaucoma and blindness. Goniodysgenesis and early-onset glaucoma initially emerged in Border Collies in Australia in the late 1990s and has subsequently been found in this breed in Europe and the USA. The objective of the present study was to determine the genetic basis of goniodysgenesis in Border Collies. Clinical diagnosis was based on results of examinations by veterinary ophthalmologists of affected and unaffected dogs from eleven different countries. Genotyping using the Illumina high density canine Single nucleotide variant (SNV) chip was used to identify a candidate genetic region. There was a highly significant peak of association over chromosome 17, with a p-value of 2 x 10-13. Expression profiles and evolutionary conservation of candidate genes were assessed using public databases. Whole genome sequences of three dogs with glaucoma, three severely affected by goniodysgenesis and three unaffected dogs identified a missense variant in the olfactomedin like 3 (OLFML3) gene in all six affected animals. This was homozygous for the risk allele in all nine cases with glaucoma and 12 of 14 other severely affected animals. Of 67 reportedly unaffected animals, only one was homozygous for this variant (offspring of parents both with goniodysgenesis who were also homozygous for the variant). Analysis of pedigree information was consistent with an autosomal recessive mode of inheritance for severe goniodysgenesis (potentially leading to glaucoma) in this breed. The identification of a candidate genetic region and putative causative variant will aid breeders to reduce the frequency of goniodysgenesis and the risk of glaucoma in the Border Collie population.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)943-954
JournalG3: Genes | Genomes | Genetics
Issue number3
Early online date29 Jan 2019
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2019
EventCompanion Animal Genetic Health (CAGH) conference 2018: - University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 14 May 201815 May 2018
Conference number: 1


  • Glaucoma
  • Goniodysgenesis
  • canine
  • GWAS
  • whole genome sequencing

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