Canine problem behaviors represent a major burden on society and an unmet clinical need. Until very recently, there was essentially nothing known about common genetic variations associated with dog temperament. This presentation shows how crowd-sourcing of the C-BARQ owner-reported canine behavior questionnaire was used to break that log jam. The findings have biological implications and suggest potential for therapeutic advances for dogs and humans.
About the Speaker
Dr. Carlos E. Alvarez is Associate Professor in The Ohio State University Colleges of Medicine & Veterinary Medicine. He began his career as a research technician in immunogenetics and trans/plantation at Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Boston. He earned his PhD from Harvard University for neuroscience studies in fruit flies and mice in the lab of Walter
Gilbert. He was postdoctoral fellow at The Scripps Research Institute and UCSD, where he studied psychiatric genetics in rodent models and humans using molecular biology, genomics and bioinformatics. Dr. Alvarez’s first independent position was as lab head of target discovery in neuroscience and ophthalmology, Novartis research (Basel, Switzerland). He is inventor on Novartis patents involving cell growth, neuroprotection and angiogenesis. Dr. Alvarez developed a program on molecular and statistical canine genomics at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and The Ohio State University. He has received funding from NIH, DoD, DHS, Arnerican Kennel Club, Morris Animal Foundation, and the Scottish Deerhound Club of America. Dr. Alvarez’s long term interest is in canine-human comparative genomics, with the ultimate goal of medical translation. His current focus areas include problem behavior and bone cancer, as well as understanding genetic variations that have effects on related and seemingly-unrelated traits (pleiotropy).