Pfizer Animal Genetics now running Osteopetrosis test

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (June 30, 2009)—Pfizer Animal Genetics is now offering a diagnostic test for the genetic defect Osteopetrosis (OS). Additionally, Pfizer Animal Genetics has been approved by the Red Angus Association of America (RAAA) as an OS testing laboratory.

The gene mutation responsible for OS has been identified and a diagnostic test has been developed and validated in collaboration with Dr. Jon Beever at the University of Illinois and the following organizations:

• University of Nebraska-Lincoln

• University of Wyoming

• University of Maryland

• U.S. Department of Agriculture Meat Animal Research Center

• U.S. Department of Agriculture Beltsville Agricultural Research Center

• Red Angus Association of America

"Our team understands the importance of a validated OS test made simple for Red Angus breeders through a convenient sample submission process," says Nigel Evans, Vice President of Pfizer Animal Genetics, a business unit of Pfizer Animal Health. "Collaborating with industry partners has allowed us to offer the OS-defect test to help producers make critical breeding and management decisions relating to suspect animals."

For each animal tested for OS before September 30, 2009, producers will earn a $10 credit towards future GeneSTAR® MVPTM testing. These credits must be redeemed before December 15, 2009.* GeneSTAR MVPs are molecular value predictions for the economically relevant traits of feed efficiency, marbling and tenderness.

Producers are encouraged to visit for details about OS sample submission or to download an order form. Additional questions may be answered by Customer Service at 1-877-BEEF DNA (1-877-233-3362).

A lethal genetic defect, OS influences Red Angus cattle. Affected calves are most often born 10 – 30 days premature and dead; those born alive will live for less than 24 hours and have a short lower jaw and impacted molars. The long bones on the affected calves are fragile and can be broken with ease. The gene is inherited as a simple recessive. Click here to access a list of animals that have already been tested for OS.

Pfizer Animal Genetics is a business unit of Pfizer Animal Health, a world leader in discovering and developing innovative animal vaccines and prescription medicines. Pfizer Inc. is the world's largest research-based pharmaceutical company.

*OS credits may not be combined with other credits and one animal may be tested per credit.