This test is based on an association study in which multiple DNA variants in close proximity to the usp31 gene on chromosome 6 were discovered that are related to Early Adult Onset Deafness (EAOD) in Border Collies. Each DNA variant is a “risk factor”. VHLGenetics tests only for those variants that have been published with the "highest risk".
The test could have potential benefits for breeders whose dogs have deafness somewhere in their pedigree, for assist in making a breeding choice. It is described in the literature that the presence of deafness in the pedigree greatly increases the chances that these risk variants are associated with the causal mutation for EAOD, which has not been discovered yet.
In case of a CARRIER/AFFECTED result for the 4 variants, this test indicates that the dog has an increased risk on whether or not to develop EAOD. It is not known how great this increased risk is, it could be entirely possible that your at risk dog is not carrying the causal mutation at all. If your dog's test results come back as CARRIER/AFFECTED, this information could be used to make sure the dog you breed him/her to is CLEAR for the respective variants.