In March, veterinary ophthalmologists at Cornell University zeroed in on the gene that causes a form of blindness in dogs. In so doing, they also found that the gene map closely matches one on the human genome.
The research was no anomalyfor humans or for Fido. The scientists were working on the dog genome project, which is similar to its larger cousin, the Human Genome Project. They aim to map out the 78 canine chromosomes and pinpoint those genes that cause certain diseases, physical attributes, and possibly even behaviors (such as a love for swimming in Newfoundlands and particular attentiveness in Border collies).