Osteosarcoma Project

New Osteosarcoma Project:

We did it — $14,000 raised!

Fundraising ideas for schools, churches, and youth sports teams

The Health & Genetics Committee is very excited to announce a new (yet long-awaited) osteosarcoma project!

In 2013, a group of researchers published an article entitled “Genome-wide analyses implicate 33 loci in heritable dog osteosarcoma, including regulatory variants near CDKN2A/B.” This article talks about osteosarcoma in three breeds: Greyhounds, Irish Wolfhounds, and Rottweilers.

As you may remember, Dr. Guillermo Couto, one of the co-authors of this article, came to the 2012 National Specialty and took blood from more than 80 dogs for his research on normal blood values in Deerhounds. Dr. Couto was also interested in osteosarcoma, and he and a geneticist, Dr. Carlos Alvarez, were working together on this problem in Greyhounds, some of the results of which are published in the article above. Of course, after Dr. Couto talked to people at the 2012 specialty, he and Dr. Alvarez were interested in this problem in Deerhounds as well.

Since then, Dr. Couto has retired, but we have kept in regular contact with Dr. Alvarez, waiting for his work in Greyhounds to get to a point where he could look at Deerhound DNA and compare it to what they have learned and see whether any of those 33 loci play a role in Deerhound osteosarcoma. This proposal does just that, as well as looks at seven other loci not covered in the article.

Dr. Alvarez still has that DNA from 2012, and we will update the health records on those dogs to get started. There are other sources of DNA we will have access to as well in addition to the CHIC DNA Bank, and we have also made provision in the grant to ship fresh samples, if necessary.

Nationwide Children’s Hospital will accept tax-deductible donations* towards the project.

You can read the entire project proposal and find more detail on the project here.

The total for all of this work is $12,137. We are very fortunate that we have already received pledges for $6000 towards this project, so we are fundraising for the balance of $6,137 now. Osteosarcoma strikes about 10% of all Deerhounds, so we want to keep working to understand this disease in Deerhounds. This project is an important step forward. PLEASE GIVE AS GENEROUSLY AS YOU CAN!

We are also fundraising for a cystinuria project, and please note that all fundraising activities must be completed by December 31, 2016, so don’t delay!


Tax-deductible donations*: Thanks to several generous donors, Nationwide Children’s Hospital now has all the money it needs for this project, so please do not donate directly to them anymore. However, we made the initial payment to Nationwide for the project from the Bunnie Austin Fund, so we would like to replenish the Bunnie Austin Fund if we can. That’s what is reflected in the thermometer above. So osteosarcoma project donations to the Bunnie Austin Fund are still very welcome (please note: donations to the Bunnie Austin Fund are not tax-deductible).

To donate to the Bunnie Austin Fund, you can “send money” via PayPal to the SDCA Treasurer: deerhound.ah “at” comcast “dot” net; just be sure to put “Osteosarcoma Study” in the notes section.

You can also make a BA Fund donation through the Deerhound Store.

Or you can mail a check, made payable to the SDCA, to

Miranda Levin
486 Rowe Mountain Road
Bradford, NH 03221

Please make sure to tell me it’s for the osteosarcoma project.

If you would still like to make a tax-deductible donation and still donate to the osteosarcoma project, then please consider sending a donation of any amount to the Bunnie Austin Fund, so you can be credited as donating to the osteo project (there is no minimum to be included on our thank-you list), and then make a tax-deductible donation of whatever amount works for you to the cystinuria project. You’ll be credited as donating to both projects.

We are also selling some beautiful clothing to help raise money for these projects.

Unless you prefer to remain anonymous, which will of course be respected, if your donation is received by December 31, 2016, it will be acknowledged in the March/April 2017 issue of the Claymore. You are welcome to donate in honor or memory of a person or a dog.

Remember: All fundraising activities end on December 31, 2016.

If you have any more questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to ask — use the contact form below.

SDCA Health & Genetics Committee

* Gifts are tax-deductible as allowed by law; please consult your tax advisor.