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DNA testing schemes approved for English setters
NCL is a severe inherited disease that causes gradual degeneration of the nervous system.
Kennel Club approves PRA and NCL schemes 

New DNA testing schemes have been approved for two conditions in English setters, the Kennel Club has announced.

The tests screen for progressive retinal atrophy (PRA-rcd4) and neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL).

A number of dog breeds are predisposed to PRA, which is characterised by bilateral degeneration of the retina. This causes progressive loss of vision, eventually leading to total blindness.

There is no treatment for PRA, so dog breeders are advised to use DNA tests to screen their animals and factor the results into their breeding programmes.

NCL is a severe inherited disease that causes gradual degeneration of the nervous system. Signs and symptoms are variable but generally include dementia, loss of vision and epilepsy.

A list of laboratories from which the Kennel Club can record results can be found on its website.

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Pair of endangered Amur leopard cubs born at Colchester Zoo

News Story 1
 Keepers at Colchester Zoo are hailing the arrival of a pair of critically endangered Amur leopard cubs.

The cubs were born to first-time parents Esra and Crispin on the 9 September. This is the first time the Zoo has bred Amur leopard cubs on-site.

Amur leopards originate from the Russian Far East and north-east China. In the wild they are threatened by climate change, habitat loss, deforestation and the illegal wildlife trade.

The cubs are said to be “looking well” and are expected to emerge from their den in a few weeks.  

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RCVS names Professor John Innes as chair of Fellowship Board

Professor John Innes has been elected chair of the 2019 RCVS Fellowship Board, replacing Professor Nick Bacon who comes to the end of his three-year term.


Professor Innes will be responsible for making sure the Fellowship progresses towards fulfilling its strategic goals, determining its ongoing strategy and objectives, and reporting to the RCVS Advancement of the Professions Committee on developments within the Fellowship.