With the objective of mapping quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for performance and carcass traits, an F2 chicken population was developed by crossing broiler and layer lines. A total of 2063 F2 chicks in 21 full-sib families were reared as broilers and slaughtered at 42 days of age. Seventeen performance and carcass traits were measured. Parental F(0) and F1 individuals were genotyped with 80 microsatellites from chicken chromosome 1 to select informative markers. Thirty-three informative markers were used for selective genotyping of F2 individuals with extreme phenotypes for body weight at 42 days of age (BW42). Based on the regions identified by selective genotyping, seven full-sib families (649 F2 chicks) were genotyped with 26 markers. Quantitative trait loci affecting body weight, feed intake, carcass weight, drums and thighs weight and abdominal fat weight were mapped to regions already identified in other populations. Quantitative trait loci for weights of gizzard, liver, lungs, heart and feet, as well as length of intestine, not previously described in the literature were mapped on chromosome 1. This F2 population can be used to identify novel QTLs and constitutes a new resource for studies of genes related to growth and carcass traits in poultry.
An F(2) resource population, derived from a broiler x layer cross, was used to map quantitative trait loci (QTL) for body weights at days 1, 35 and 41, weight gain, feed intake, feed efficiency from 35 to 41 days and intestinal length. Up to 577 F(2) chickens were genotyped with 103 genetic markers covering 21 linkage groups. A preliminary QTL mapping report using this same population focused exclusively on GGA1. Regression methods were applied to line-cross and half-sib models for QTL interval mapping. Under the line-cross model, eight QTL were detected for body weight at 35 days (GGA2, 3 and 4), body weight at 41 days (GGA2, 3, 4 and 10) and intestine length (GGA4). Under the half-sib model, using sire as common parent, five QTL were detected for body weight at day 1 (GGA3 and 18), body weight at 35 days (GGA2 and 3) and body weight at 41 days (GGA3). When dam was used as common parent, seven QTL were mapped for body weight at day 1 (GGA2), body weight at day 35 (GGA2, 3 and 4) and body weight at day 41 (GGA2, 3 and 4). Growth differences in chicken lines appear to be controlled by a chronological change in a limited number of chromosomal regions.
An F(2) population established by crossing a broiler male line and a layer line was used to map quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting abdominal fat weight, abdominal fat percentage and serum cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations. Two genetic models, the line-cross and the half-sib, were applied in the QTL analysis, both using the regression interval method. Three significant QTL and four suggestive QTL were mapped in the line-cross analysis and four significant and four suggestive QTL were mapped in the half-sib analysis. A total of five QTL were mapped for abdominal fat weight, six for abdominal fat percentage and four for triglyceride concentration in both analyses. New QTL associated with serum triglyceride concentration were mapped on GGA5, GGA23 and GG27. QTL mapped between markers LEI0029 and ADL0371 on GGA3 for abdominal fat percentage and abdominal fat weight and a suggestive QTL on GGA12 for abdominal fat percentage showed significant parent-of-origin effects. Some QTL mapped here match QTL regions mapped in previous studies using different populations, suggesting good candidate regions for fine-mapping and candidate gene searches.
Chicken genotyping is becoming common practice in conventional animal breeding improvement. Despite the power of high-throughput methods for genotyping, their high cost limits large scale use in animal breeding and selection. In the present paper we optimized the CornellGBS, an efficient and cost-effective genotyping by sequence approach developed in plants, for its application in chickens. Here we describe the successful genotyping of a large number of chickens (462) using CornellGBS approach. Genomic DNA was cleaved with the PstI enzyme, ligated to adapters with barcodes identifying individual animals, and then sequenced on Illumina platform. After filtering parameters were applied, 134,528 SNPs were identified in our experimental population of chickens. Of these SNPs, 67,096 had a minimum taxon call rate of 90% and were considered ‘unique tags’. Interestingly, 20.7% of these unique tags have not been previously reported in the dbSNP. Moreover, 92.6% of these SNPs were concordant with a previous Whole Chicken-genome re-sequencing dataset used for validation purposes. The application of CornellGBS in chickens showed high performance to infer SNPs, particularly in exonic regions and microchromosomes. This approach represents a cost-effective (~US$50/sample) and powerful alternative to current genotyping methods, which has the potential to improve whole-genome selection (WGS), and genome-wide association studies (GWAS) in chicken production.
White striping (WS) is one of the most common myopathies identified in broiler chickens leading to substantial production losses, where the incidence reaches 12% in commercial chickens. It occurs primarily in heavier chickens being a modification of the breast muscle characterized by the presence of pale parallel streaks in the same orientation of the muscle fibers. Since the WS etiology remains unclear, we aimed to identify the biological and genetic mechanisms involved in its occurrence through the whole transcriptome analysis of WS in affected and unaffected chicken breast muscles. A total of 11,177 genes were expressed in the pectoralis major muscle. Out of those, 1,441 genes were differentially expressed (FDR ≤ 0.01) between the two analyzed groups, being, respectively, 772 genes upregulated and 669 downregulated in the WS affected group. A total of 36 significantly overrepresented GO terms related to WS myopathy were enriched, and the most relevant biological processes were activation of immune system, angiogenesis, hypoxia, cell death, and striated muscle contraction. The unbalance of those biological processes may trigger the occurrence of the WS phenotype in broilers. The possible lack of capillary blood supply homogeneously in the muscle triggers the hypoxia, following the activation of glycolysis, calcium signaling and apoptosis related genes facilitating the tissue damage and WS incidence.
BackgroundGenetic improvement in livestock populations can be achieved without significantly affecting genetic diversity if mating systems and selection decisions take genetic relationships among individuals into consideration. The objective of this study was to examine the genetic diversity of two commercial breeds of pigs. Genotypes from 1168 Landrace (LA) and 1094 Large White (LW) animals from a commercial breeding program in Brazil were obtained using the Illumina PorcineSNP60 Beadchip. Inbreeding estimates based on pedigree (Fx) and genomic information using runs of homozygosity (FROH) and the single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) by SNP inbreeding coefficient (FSNP) were obtained. Linkage disequilibrium (LD), correlation of linkage phase (r) and effective population size (Ne) were also estimated.ResultsEstimates of inbreeding obtained with pedigree information were lower than those obtained with genomic data in both breeds. We observed that the extent of LD was slightly larger at shorter distances between SNPs in the LW population than in the LA population, which indicates that the LW population was derived from a smaller Ne. Estimates of Ne based on genomic data were equal to 53 and 40 for the current populations of LA and LW, respectively. The correlation of linkage phase between the two breeds was equal to 0.77 at distances up to 50 kb, which suggests that genome-wide association and selection should be performed within breed. Although selection intensities have been stronger in the LA breed than in the LW breed, levels of genomic and pedigree inbreeding were lower for the LA than for the LW breed.ConclusionsThe use of genomic data to evaluate population diversity in livestock animals can provide new and more precise insights about the effects of intense selection for production traits. Resulting information and knowledge can be used to effectively increase response to selection by appropriately managing the rate of inbreeding, minimizing negative effects of inbreeding depression and therefore maintaining desirable levels of genetic diversity.
An F2 experimental population, developed from a broiler layer cross, was used in a genome scan of QTL for percentage of carcass, carcass parts, shank and head. Up to 649 F2 chickens from four paternal half-sib families were genotyped with 128 genetic markers covering 22 linkage groups. Total map length was 2630 cM, covering approximately 63% of the genome. QTL interval mapping using regression methods was applied to line-cross and half-sib models. Under the line-cross model, 12 genome-wide significant QTL and 17 suggestive linkages for percentages of carcass parts, shank and head were mapped to 13 linkage groups (GGA1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 14, 18 and 27). Under the paternal half-sib model, six genome-wide significant QTL and 18 suggestive linkages for percentages of carcass parts, shank and head were detected on nine chicken linkage groups (GGA1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 12, 14, 15 and 27), seven of which seemed to corroborate positions revealed by the previous model. Overall, three novel QTL of importance to the broiler industry were mapped (one significant for shank% on GGA3 and two suggestive for carcass and breast percentages on GGA14 and drums and thighs percentage on GGA15). One novel QTL for wings% was mapped to GGA3, six novel QTL (GGA1, 3, 7, 8, 9 and 27) and suggestive linkages (GGA2, 4, and 5) were mapped for head%, and suggestive linkages were identified for back% on GGA2, 11 and 12. In addition, many of the QTL mapped in this study confirmed QTL previously reported in other populations.
BackgroundExcess fat content in chickens has a negative impact on poultry production. The discovery of QTL associated with fat deposition in the carcass allows the identification of positional candidate genes (PCGs) that might regulate fat deposition and be useful for selection against excess fat content in chicken’s carcass. This study aimed to estimate genomic heritability coefficients and to identify QTLs and PCGs for abdominal fat (ABF) and skin (SKIN) traits in a broiler chicken population, originated from the White Plymouth Rock and White Cornish breeds.ResultsABF and SKIN are moderately heritable traits in our broiler population with estimates ranging from 0.23 to 0.33. Using a high density SNP panel (355,027 informative SNPs), we detected nine unique QTLs that were associated with these fat traits. Among these, four QTL were novel, while five have been previously reported in the literature. Thirteen PCGs were identified that might regulate fat deposition in these QTL regions: JDP2, PLCG1, HNF4A, FITM2, ADIPOR1, PTPN11, MVK, APOA1, APOA4, APOA5, ENSGALG00000000477, ENSGALG00000000483, and ENSGALG00000005043. We used sequence information from founder animals to detect 4843 SNPs in the 13 PCGs. Among those, two were classified as potentially deleterious and two as high impact SNPs.ConclusionsThis study generated novel results that can contribute to a better understanding of fat deposition in chickens. The use of high density array of SNPs increases genome coverage and improves QTL resolution than would have been achieved with low density. The identified PCGs were involved in many biological processes that regulate lipid storage. The SNPs identified in the PCGs, especially those predicted as potentially deleterious and high impact, may affect fat deposition. Validation should be undertaken before using these SNPs for selection against carcass fat accumulation and to improve feed efficiency in broiler chicken production.Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article (10.1186/s12864-018-4779-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
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