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Dog breeds and conformations predisposed to osteosarcoma in the UK: a VetCompass study

O'Neill, Dan, Edmunds, Grace, Urquhart-Gilmore, Jade, Church, David, Rutherford, Lynda, Smalley, Matthew ORCID: and Brodbelt, David 2023. Dog breeds and conformations predisposed to osteosarcoma in the UK: a VetCompass study. Canine Medicine and Genetics 10 , 8. 10.1186/s40575-023-00131-2

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Background: Osteosarcoma is a malignant bone neoplasia that has high welfare consequences for affected dogs. Awareness of breed and canine conformational risk factors for osteosarcoma can assist with earlier diagnosis and improved clinical management. Study of osteosarcoma in dogs also offers translational value for humans. Anonymised clinical data within VetCompass on dogs under primary veterinary care in the UK were searched for osteosarcoma cases. Descriptive statistics reported overall and breed-specific prevalence. Risk factor analysis used multivariable logistic regression modelling. Results: From 905,552 study dogs, 331 osteosarcoma cases were confirmed yielding a one-year period prevalence of 0.037% (95% CI: 0.033-0.041). Breeds with the highest annual prevalence were the Scottish Deerhound (3.28%, 95% CI 0.90-8.18), Leonberger (1.48%, 95% CI 0.41- 3.75), Great Dane (0.87%, 95% CI 0.43- 1.55) and Rottweiler (0.84%, 95% CI 0.64-1.07). The median age at diagnosis was 9.64 years (IQR: 7.97-11.41). Following multivariable modelling, 11 breeds showed increased odds of osteosarcoma compared with crossbred dogs. Breeds with the highest odds included Scottish Deerhound (OR 118.40, 95% CI 41.12-340.95), Leonberger (OR 55.79, 95% CI 19.68-158.15), Great Dane (OR 34.24, 95% CI 17.81-65.83) and Rottweiler (OR 26.67, 95% CI 18.57-38.29). Compared with breeds with mesocephalic skull conformation, breeds with dolichocephalic skull conformation (OR 2.72, 95% CI 2.06-3.58) had increased odds while breeds with brachycephalic skull conformation showed reduced odds (OR 0.50, 95% CI 0.32-0.80). Chondrodystrophic breeds had 0.10 times the odds (95% CI 0.06-0.15) compared with non-chondrodystrophic breeds. Increasing adult bodyweight was associated with increasing odds of osteosarcoma. Conclusions: The current study cements the concept that breed, bodyweight and longer leg or longer skull length are all strong risk factors for osteosarcoma in dogs. With this awareness, veterinarians can update their clinical suspicion and judgement, breeders can select towards lower-risk animals, and researchers can robustly define more useful study populations for fundamental and translational bioscience.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
Q Science > QL Zoology
Publisher: Springer Nature
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 27 June 2023
Date of Acceptance: 22 May 2023
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2023 15:29

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