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Etalon and APHA partner to offer genetic tools to Paint breeders

Put genetics on your side when it comes to breeding Paint Horses by taking advantage of Etalon Diagnostics’ broad-spectrum DNA genetic testing panel, thanks to a new partnership between the biotech company and APHA.

Specializing in equine genetic diagnostics, Etalon will make its DNA testing panel available through APHA, the world’s second-largest equine breed association; the test provides a detailed and comprehensive profile of a horse’s genetic makeup.

Genetic testing can help breeders produce horses that excel in a particular discipline, improve probability of getting prized Paint patterns and identify a horse’s genetic health. Trainers, riders and owners can also use Etalon’s genetic tests to better understand their horses’ capabilities and limitations.

A thorough assessment of a horse’s predispositions once required multiple tests from different vendors, and piecing together a useful profile was time-consuming and expensive. Available soon through the APHA website, Etalon’s comprehensive panel provides results on more than 40 traits—including disease markers, color and pattern characteristics, abilities and performance qualities—for a single, affordable package price. The panel includes many traits that have been unavailable commercially until recently.

“We’re a strongly research-focused company,” Etalon CEO Christa Lafayette said. “We pride ourselves on innovation, precision and providing horse people with the information they want and need. Combining horses and technology just makes sense, as does listening to those who know and love horses best: owners, riders, breeders and trainers. No one knows and loves Paint Horses like the folks at APHA.”

DNA testing is simple, requiring only hair from the horse’s mane or tail. After purchasing the test through APHA, the sample is mailed to Etalon Diagnostics. After laboratory analysis is complete, results are provided by email, including detailed explanations of each result and links to reference material for further understanding. APHA will continue to offer DNA genetic testing through and accept test results from its longtime partner, the University of California–Davis, as well.

“The uniqueness of our breed demands that we learn all we can to enhance those defining qualities,” APHA Executive Director Billy Smith said. “That’s why we’re so excited about the innovations Etalon Diagnostics is putting to work for Paint Horses. Color coat genetics is the key to maintaining our unique position in the equine community.”

“Our service makes it easier to know a horse inside and out,” Christa said. “The better we understand our horses, the more capable we’ll be of protecting their health, making them successful in their disciplines and preserving their unique beauty. We’re proud to sponsor APHA, and we look forward to working together to serve these magnificent animals and the people who love them.”

Watch apha.com for more information about Etalon genetic testing, available soon.


[Reprinting all or part of this news release is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provided back to apha.com.]

About APHA

The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded. APHA creates and maintains programs that increase the value of American Paint Horses and enriches members’ experiences with their horses.

About Etalon

Etalon, Inc. is a biotech company dedicated to creating and refining meaningful, useful, and scientifically valid methods for improving the lives and health of performance, service, and companion animals. It is through the close collaboration of scientists and equine owners, riders, and breeders that genetic discovery can be accelerated to better the equine experience and lifestyle. The Etalon Diagnostics team includes scientists, geneticists, biologists, tech experts, professional equestrians, and animal lovers from Silicon Valley as well as universities and laboratories around the United States. For more information, visit us on Facebook, Twitter and etalondx.com, or contact us via email.