PROGRESSIVE RETINAL ATROPHY
WHAT IS PROGRESSIVE RETINAL ATROPHY (PRA-b)?
Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA-b) (Bengal) is a genetic condition specific to Bengals affecting the eyes, causing an autosomal recessive blindness. The disease causes the destruction of the cells that register light (photoreceptors) in the back of the eye (the retina). The research for this condition found the loss of eyesight to begin around 7 weeks of age to 2 years of age.
Cats blinded by PRA-b tend to have more difficulty at night, sometimes becoming more vocal and more attached to their owners. Affected cats typically have more dilated pupils and tend to carry their whiskers in a more forward position.
There are genetic screenings for PRA-b that is quick and easy to obtain. Responsible breeders will have their breeding cats tested and provide the test results.
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Ofri, R., Reilly, C.M., Maggs, D.J., Fitzgerald, P.G., Shilo-Benjamini, Y., Good, K.L., Grahn, R.A., Splawski, D.D., & Lyons, L.A. (2015). Characterization of an early-onset, autosomal recessive, progressive retinal degeneration in Bengal cats. Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science, 56(9), 5299-5308. doi: 10.1167/iovs.15-16585
Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA-b) (Bengal). (n.d.). UC Davis Veterinary Medicine Veterinary Genetics Laboratory. Retrieved from https://vgl.ucdavis.edu/test/pra-bengal