Cranial cruciate ligament rupture (CCLR) is a leading cause of pelvic limb lameness in dogs. About 6% of Labs suffer from this orthopedic problem and since this breed is one of the most popular in the U.S., Michael Conzemius, DVM, PhD, DACVS, and Molly McCue, DVM, MS, PhD, DACVIM,  with the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine decided to collaborate on a study to determine the disease’s heritability in Labrador Retrievers and they wanted to measure the extent to which CCLR is associated with genetics in this breed.

Cruciate ligaments, connecting the femur to the tibia bones, are called cranial and caudal in quadrupeds, such a dogs; the cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) is analogous to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in humans. These ligaments are prone to rupture, in humans, dogs, horses and, in other species.

Previous work has shown that approximately 2.5%…

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