Direct Genetic Test Now Available for Equine Dun Gene

Dun stallion

Animal Genetics is pleased to announce that Rolf de Kloet has uncovered the specific point mutation that produces the Dun dilution in horse coat color.  Mr. de Kloet’s research is significant because the specific genetic mutation responsible for Dun dilution had not previously been discovered.

The identification of this mutation now allows Animal Genetics to offer a direct DNA test for the Dun gene.  Our test does not rely on genetic markers/ zygosity to indirectly identify the presence of the Dun gene.  Instead, we are able to determine if your horse has zero, one or two copies of the genetic mutation with a simple, straight forward test. Animal Genetics is the first genetic testing lab to be able to test directly for Dun coat color in horses.

“The intensive research conducted in our lab is a valuable contribution to the study of equine genetics, said Arne de Kloet, president of Animal Genetics, Inc. “We are proud to offer our customers the first true test for Dun coat color.”

The Dun gene is dominant, so only one copy is needed to produce color dilution. A horse that has the Dun mutation will have a lightened coat depending on the color of the base coat. A Dun horse will usually also have darker stripes or darkened areas, such as legs, mane and tail, which reflect the underlying base coat color.  A classic or bay Dun horse has a tan coat color with a dark dorsal stripe and a darker mane, tail and legs.  Duns can also be red, with an underlying red or chestnut base coat or blue, with an underlying black coat.

For more information on our new Dun genetic test, please see our Dun Coat Color Testing page.

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