Exciting news in the dog world!
The genome of the Basenji, which sits at the base of the dog breed family tree, makes an excellent unbiased reference for future comparisons between dog breeds and evolutionary analysis of dogs.
“Before this paper, it was difficult to interpret differences between the dog reference genomes and non-domesticated dogs, such as dingoes, jackals, coyotes, wolves and foxes.”
“Big changes could be the result of recent artificial selection during creation of the specific reference breed.”
“By adding such a high-quality genome at the base of the domestic dog family tree, we have provided an anchor point for studies that can help establish the timing and direction of genetic changes during domestication and subsequent breeding.”
“As Basenjis are a very old breed, they provide the perfect comparison to more modern breeds to explore how breeds were developed, the process of domestication and assist in studies looking for disease genes,” said Dr. Kylie Cairns, a researcher in the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of New South Wales.