SAGE Journals

Precision medicine validation: identifying the MYBPC3 A31P variant with whole-genome sequencing in two Maine Coon cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

Posted on 2018-12-18 - 12:00

The objective of this study was to perform a proof-of-concept experiment that validates a precision medicine approach to identify variants associated with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). We hypothesized that whole-genome sequencing would identify variant(s) associated with HCM in two affected Maine Coon/Maine Coon cross cats when compared with 79 controls of various breeds.


Two affected and two control Maine Coon/Maine Coon cross cats had whole-genome sequencing performed at approximately × 30 coverage. Variants were called in these four cats and 77 cats of various breeds as part of the 99 Lives Cat Genome Sequencing Initiative ( using Platypus v0.7.9.1, annotated with dbSNP ID, and variants’ effect predicted by SnpEff. Strict filtering criteria (alternate allele frequency >49%) were applied to identify homozygous-alternate or heterozygous variants in the two HCM-affected samples when compared with 79 controls of various breeds.


A total of four variants were identified in the two Maine Coon/Maine Coon cross cats with HCM when compared with 79 controls after strict filtering. Three of the variants identified in genes MFSD12, BTN1A1 and SLITRK5 did not segregate with disease in a separate cohort of seven HCM-affected and five control Maine Coon/Maine Coon cross cats. The remaining variant MYBPC3 segregated with disease status. Furthermore, this gene was previously associated with heart disease and encodes for a protein with sarcomeric function.

Conclusions and relevance

This proof-of-concept experiment identified the previously reported MYBPC3 A31P Maine Coon variant in two HCM-affected cases. This result validates and highlights the power of whole-genome sequencing for feline precision medicine.


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