Neuroaxonal Dystrophy

Section: Genetic Testing

Fee: $63.00 - $110.00 (see additional information)

Turnaround Time: 1 – 2 Weeks

Days Test Started: Monday

Species: Canine




Minimum Amount

Cheek Swab

Paper Envelope

Whole Blood

EDTA Tube, Purple - Top

2 - 3 mL


Leak-proof Container

1/4 to 1/2 mL

Dew Claw and Tail

Sealed, Leakproof Container or Whirlpak

Collection Information

Select the appropriate Sample Collection Protocol based on the sample type that will be submitted.
Cheek Swab
Dew Claw and Tail Docking

Shipping Information

A completed submission form and receipt of payment must be included in the package with any samples before any testing will begin.

Please include all samples for a given order IN THE SAME SHIPMENT. If you are unable to submit a sample from one or more dogs, please submit a separate order for those dogs once the samples are ready to be shipped.

Please follow specific shipping instructions provided in the Sample Collection Protocols linked above.

If the samples will be shipping from out of the USA, please follow these USDA Importation Procedures and include the required completed documents.

Additional Information
The Neuroaxonal Dystrophy Test is a genetic test looking for the presence of genes associated with Neuroaxonal Dystrophy in Miniature American Shepherds.

Sample Submission Requires a Completed Submission Form and Online Payment
Download and complete the Canine Genetic Testing Submission Form from the ADDL website. One submission form will need to be completed for each dog unless the test is for a litter. In the case of a litter, you may complete the Canine Genetic Testing Litter Submission Form.
Include a printed copy of the completed submission form and paid receipt with the sample submission. Testing will NOT begin until payment has been received in full. You will receive a copy of the receipt in the confirmation email once the checkout process has completed.

Individual Tests:
1-3 Dogs: $70.00 for each dog
4 or more: $63.00 for each dog
Combo of Two Tests:
1-3 Dogs: $110.00 for each dog
4 or more: $95.00 for each dog

Once the submission form(s) has been completed, please go to the ADDL Genetic Testing Payment website to submit payment PRIOR TO SHIPPING ANY SAMPLES. Please note, the payment website will timeout if inactive for 15 minutes without saving/submitting information. You will need to enter the name and sex of each dog as one of the online form steps. Please have this information ready to prevent a system timeout from occurring.

Select the name of the correct testing option for payment based on individual vs combo test and quantity of dogs getting that specific test order. Individual tests are to be used if it is the only test that a specific dog will be tested for. Combo tests are to be used when a specific dog will get tested for the combination of tests included with that combo. To ensure price breaks work accurately, please chose the 1-3 dogs testing option or the 4+ dogs testing option based on the number of dogs you are submitting samples for on that specific testing option. For questions, please contact the ADDL by phone at 765-494-7440 or email

Please view the Neuroaxonal Dystrophy Result Interpretation page for information explaining the meaning of report results.

Condition Information

Neuroaxonal Dystrophy (NAD)

An inherited neurological disease termed Neuroaxonal Dystrophy (NAD) has been reported in Miniature American Shepherd, Miniature Australian Shepherd, and Toy Australian Shepherd dogs in the United States and Europe. Cases have been confirmed by post-mortem examination by board certified veterinary neuropathologists.

The age-of-onset is typically in young adult dogs (2-4 years of age), which is unfortunate, because dogs may have been bred before they are known to be affected. Clinical signs begin very mildly, including a wide rear stance and intermittent abnormal gait, beginning in the pelvic limbs. They may have difficulty climbing stairs or jumping onto heights that shouldn’t normally be a problem. The signs will progress and worsen slowly, but insidiously, over time. Pelvic limbs may drag, resulting in wounds to the top of the foot. Eventually the dog will demonstrate an abnormal gait all the time, and the thoracic limbs will also become affected. The thoracic limbs typically exhibit a “high stepping” gait. Other clinical signs can include: head tremors, mental dullness, vision issues, urinary and fecal incontinence (periodic progressing to permanent), laryngeal paralysis, and others. The speed and severity of progression of these signs ultimately dictate the dog’s quality of life, and may necessitate humane euthanasia if the dog cannot walk on its own.

Necropsy of the neurological system reveals pathological changes throughout the brain (including the cerebrum and cerebellum) and spinal cord.

Research carried out at Purdue University, in parallel with researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Bern (in Switzerland), indicates that this disease is inherited in an autosomal recessive manner. We have identified a mutation within a disease-associated gene, and all affected dogs have two copies of this mutation. We are now offering a genetic test which allows owners to determine their dog’s status for this mutation (clear, carrier, or affected) in order to diagnose affected dogs and to guide future breeding decisions. Carriers do not need to be removed from the breeding population; however, they should only be bred to clear mates to avoid producing affected offspring.

Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine, 625 Harrison Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907, 765-494-7607

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