Connemara Driving Ponies

Connemara Driving Ponies

Friday, 26 September 2014

Will national societies respond ?

The following is pasted from the HWSD website.

Below is pasted the letter circulated by the ICCPS. The email that the letter accompanies states that the letter "contains information that should be shared with all Connemara Pony Society members and breeders."
To Connemara Pony Stud Book Societies:
Recently, the ICCPS Executive Board has had a number of inquiries from Societies and breeders around the world about the status of the UC Davis Hoof Wall Separation Disease research project. Many Stud Book Societies are following the HWSD research project, very closely. Currently, the US VGL (Veterinary Genetics Laboratory at University of California, Davis) delivers gene test results, all over the world. The Connemara Pony Research Group has made this research possible and breeders from most ICCPS societies are concerned.
We feel that it is important that Connemara Pony breeders may find information through their own Stud Book Society. We know there are Societies preparing to take action on national expert advice.
The following statements are based on information from a number of ICCPS member Stud Books and their contacts with national veterinary and genetic expertise:
• Wait for the research to be scientifically evaluated.
• Do not publish test results for individual ponies until the research and test methods are scientifically recognized.
• The first step, before the Society moves on to any breeding policy, the research should have been published in a peer-review scientific journal.
Dr Carrie Finno from the research team sent the following message on 18th September: “The manuscript is currently being reviewed by co-authors prior to submitting for an official peer-review in a selected journal. As the timelines of journal review vary, I cannot guarantee when the publication will be accepted but I will be happy to forward you the acceptance letter once it has passed peer-review.”
The Executive Board will be happy to forward this information to all Societies, as soon as we get it.
There is a long way from genetic research to a breeding policy. Our veterinary experts suggest that we need to know more about the clinical relevance of the genetic findings in this project, to eliminate sources of error and pitfalls, before heading into breeding programs and policies. The Dutch Society reports they are planning to contact the New Forest Pony Society to learn from their myotonia breeding policy.
As long as there is no breeding policy, the test must be regarded as a strictly private and voluntary business for the breeders. At the same time, information proceeding from the breeding societies is needed. People need to know that the research project is recognized by the Societies as an important knowledge but that a Stud Book Society has to wait until the research is finally accepted scientifically before moving on to a breeding policy. A link from Society websites to UC Davis website for information on the project is suggested:
While waiting for final research results and national expertise advice, we may prepare for the future by considering the following questions (in any order):
• How do we secure the identity (and breeding) of tested ponies in a breeding programme?
• Does the pony have to be DNA-tested for identity at the same time the gene test is carried out?
• How can we publish test results?
• How do we secure the use of samples that are sent to the lab – can they be used for further research without the owner’s permission?
• Can we make it possible to agree within the ICCPS on an international breeding policy?
Please let us know about the situation in your Society regarding the Hoof Wall Separation Disease project. Please share your thoughts, plans and further questions with me, and/or the ICCPS. Email to ICCPS Secretary, Susan McConnell (, will be very much appreciated.
On behalf of the ICCPS Executive Board,
Madeleine Beckman, ICCPS Chair
Hoof Wall Separation Syndrome (HWSS) is an inherited condition seen in Connemara ponies and typified by the dorsal hoof wall splitting away from underlying structures. This hoof defect develops in young foals between one to six months of age. The condition results in afflicted ponies having to supp…

1 comment:

  1. Finola Mulholland6 November 2014 at 01:33

    :- I have voted with sending my samples, firstly at the research phase of the project, when I had my vet draw bloods from 34 ponies, and again with follicular DNA from 5 colts and stallions ( confirming the research results ) since the VGL has offered the HWSD test on a commercial basis. I will test the remainder in time as I can gather the funds. I have my own brain, and my own rights, and choose to test my ponies as I know it is the right way to tackle the HWSD issue. I do not wait for people with vested interests in secrecy telling me what I can or cannot do. Finola, Donegreagh Connemaras. Co.Armagh.


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