Gerbil Genetics

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Gerbil Genetics

Gerbils: Chimeras & Mosaics

chimerapromo.jpgOn rare occasions, a coat colouring can grab the attention of the gerbil community and usually these coats with their unusual markings involve mosaicism or chimerism. These animals are usually bi-coloured or tri-coloured when combined with Spotting.  Significantly, their markings are usually distinct and their coat patterns are unlike those seen in all other white marked gerbils.

Gerbil genetics for the beginner

genepromo1.jpgSeveral of the existing genetics guides at eGerbil have now been updated with new information on both the old and new genes in circulation, and these pages have been redesigned with the beginner in mind.  Each section has been taken from our existing genetics section and has been completely re-edited,updated, and compiled as an introduction into the basic concepts of gerbil genetics.

For anyone interested in the coat mutations of the Mongolian gerbil, our mutation timeline gives you accurate and up to date chronological information on each mutation since the gerbil was introduced as a pet, and the date when they were first discovered.  Each section also gives you a potted history on each gene in question and also when it gained the interest of the scientific community.

Odd-Eyed Gerbils

Heterochromia Iridum in the Mongolian gerbil

oddeyethumb.jpgThis strange occurence of odd-eyed animals which although rare, can be found documented in many domestic species including dogs, cats, horses, cattle and rodents.  It can also be observed in humans too.

Recently with the appearance of a new spotting gene known as Semidominant lethal spotting, odd-eyed gerbils have begun to appear in breeding lines when this new gene is combined with the well known Dominant spotting gene.  The gerbils in question didn't appear to have any related problems with this eye condition and appeared quite healthy, however these breeding lines that are the  result of combining the two spotting genes are more predisposed to neurological problems....

Semi-Dominant Lethal Spotting in the Mongolian Gerbil

rblitterthumba.jpgRead about the new spotting gene that first appeared in the Czech Republic and nearby countries around 2000, and despite its known health problems it has since migrated to virtually everywhere in Europe and is now appearing in pet shops around the U.K.   The articles deals with this spotting gene in depth and includes breeding studies,health data and the subsequent identification of the gene.

In 2008, a thread started on the eGerbil forum telling members that Pets@Home petshop chains were then selling what looked like Extreme White and White paws gerbils at a few of their outlets.  To explain further, White paws gerbils are carrying a single dominant lethal spotting gene, so in effect this type of lethal spotting is said to be in its heterozygous state, if it were homozygous...

Gerbil Mutation timeline has been revised & updated!

muttimepromo.jpg Have a look at the new revised gerbil mutation timeline and see how mutations in the gerbil gene pool have allowed breeders to create all the stunning coat colours we see in our pet gerbils today.  When the gerbil first became a household pet, no colour mutations existed, however since the animal has been kept in captivity many unusual coat mutations have arisen all of which helps our little furry friend remain one of the most attractive and sought after small animals when choosing a pet today.

The Underwhite Gene, a new Mutation in the Mongolian Gerbil

Over the years it has been the mouse coat colour genes that have played a significant role in the understanding of the basic aspects of mammalian genetics. This holds true for the Underwhite locus which encodes for the MATP (membrane-associated transporter protein) protein, which has been used repeatedly as a coat colour marker in gene linkage and mapping studies. For many years, it was the phenotypic marker of choice for locating genes on chromosome 15....


To read the full article either click on the photo link above or here