AQHA to Host Equine Cloning Forum

The American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) will host a forum on equine cloning at the 2009 AQHA Annual Convention, which will be held March 5-9 at the Grand Hyatt in San Antonio.

Within the past couple of years, a number of horses have been cloned, including American Quarter Horses. However, under Rule 227(a) of the AQHA official handbook, a rule that became effective in 2004, American Quarter Horses produced by any cloning process are not eligible for registration.

At AQHA's 2008 convention, the AQHA Stud Book & Registration Committee was for the first time presented with a proposed change to Rule 227(a) that would allow a live foal produced via a particular type of cloning to be registered if its DNA matches that of a registered American Quarter Horse. At that time, the stud book committee recommended that any decision regarding the proposed change be postponed pending further study to be undertaken at the direction of the committee. As a result, on October 15, representatives from Colorado State University, Texas A&M University and ViaGen, a commercial cloning company, met with the stud book committee in Amarillo to discuss equine cloning.

The proposed change to Rule 227(a) will again be on the Stud Book & Registration Committee agenda at the 2009 AQHA Convention. In an effort to make the most recent information on equine cloning available to AQHA members, AQHA has scheduled an open forum for Friday, March 6, from 2 to 4:30 p.m. at the Grand Hyatt hotel. AQHA anticipates the forum will include presentations by a panel of speakers from the equine industry and educational research institutions. This forum is open to all interested AQHA members.

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