Western wins grant for endangered species breeding study

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Western wins grant for endangered species breeding study

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Oct 05, 2009
By dvm360.com staff
Pomona, Calif. -- Researchers at Western University’s College of Veterinary Medicine landed a $100,000 grant to work on improvements to captive endangered species’ breeding programs.

The National Leadership grant, from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, will allow a team at the school to study how genetics can be used to maximize diversity and robustness in breeding endangered species. The study will focus on snow leopards, but researchers believe the findings could be applied to other endangered species in the future.

The research team at Western University will collect DNA samples from snow leopards and form a draft of its genome, which will be used to identify specific genes associated with immune function.

Oregon State University, the Great Plains Zoo & Delbridge Museum of Natural History and the Snow Leopard Species Survival Plan also will be involved in the study.