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Many QTLs with minor additive effects are associated with a large difference in growth between two selection lines in chickens
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Neuroscience.
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2005 (English)In: Genetical Research, ISSN 0016-6723, Vol. 86, no 2, 115-125 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Two growth-selected lines in chickens have been developed from a single founder population bydivergent selection for body weight at 56 days of age. After more than 40 generations of selectionthey show a nine-fold difference in body weight at selection age and large differences in growth rate,appetite, fat deposition and metabolic characteristics. We have generated a large intercross betweenthese lines comprising more than 800 F2 birds. QTL mapping revealed 13 loci affecting growth.The most striking observation was that the allele in the high weight line in all cases was associatedwith enhanced growth, but each locus explained only a small proportion of the phenotypic varianceusing a standard QTL model (1.3–3.1%). This result is in sharp contrast to our previous studywhere we reported that the two-fold difference in adult body size between the red junglefowl andWhite Leghorn domestic chickens is explained by a small number of QTLs with large additiveeffects. Furthermore, no QTLs for anorexia or antibody response were detected despite largedifferences for these traits between the founder lines. The result is an excellent example where alarge phenotypic difference between populations occurs in the apparent absence of any single locuswith large phenotypic effects. The study underscores the need for powerful experimental designs ingenetic studies of multifactorial traits. No QTL at all would have reached genome-wide significanceusing a less powerful design (e.g. approx. 200 F2 individuals) regardless of the nine-fold phenotypicdifference between the founder lines for the selected trait.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2005. Vol. 86, no 2, 115-125 p.
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-97917DOI: 10.1017/S0016672305007767OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-97917DiVA: diva2:173035
Available from: 2009-01-23 Created: 2009-01-23 Last updated: 2009-09-28Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Chicken Genomics - Linkage and QTL mapping
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Chicken Genomics - Linkage and QTL mapping
2009 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis presents results from genetic studies conducted in the chicken (Gallus gallus). The domestication of chicken is believed to have been initiated approximately 7,000 – 9,000 years ago in Southeast Asia. Since that time, selective breeding has altered the appearance of the wild ancestor, creating highly specialized chicken lines developed for egg and meat production.

The first part of this thesis describes a detailed genetic analysis conducted on an F2 intercross between two phenotypically diverse chicken lines. The two parental lines used in this experiment originated from the same base population and have been developed by divergent selection for juvenile body-weight. Selection during forty generations has resulted in an eight-fold difference in body-weight between the High-Weight Selected (HWS) and Low-Weight Selected (LWS) line. In an attempt to identify the genetic factors differentiating the two lines, a large intercross population was bred to map Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) affecting body-weight traits. A linkage map was constructed which included 434 genetic markers covering 31 of the 38 chicken autosomes. Although there is a dramatic phenotypic difference between the two founder lines, the QTL analysis for marginal effect could only identify seven QTL, each with small additive effects, influencing body-weight. We extended the genetic analysis to also include a model testing for pair-wise interactions between loci (epistasis). The analysis revealed 15 QTL pairs that affect body-weight and several of those formed a network of interacting loci. These results suggest that the genetic basis for the large difference in body-weight is most likely a result of a combined effect of multiple genetic factors, including QTL with small additive effects in combination with pair-wise interactions between QTL.

The second part of this thesis presents two linkage maps. The first map constructed was of the chicken Z chromosome, the second used a genome-wide marker set, including 12,945 SNP markers, to build an updated consensus map of the chicken genome. The resulting consensus map includes 9,268 genetic markers and covers 33 chromosomes, still leaving five microchromosomes without marker coverage. The genome average rate of recombination was estimated to 3.1 cM/Mb, but varied considerably between and within chromosomes. A general trend of elevated recombination rates towards telomeric ends and lower rates near centromeres was observed. This was in concordance to previous reports from mammalian species. Recombination rates in chicken were also found to be highly positively correlated with GC-rich sequences.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2009. 44 p.
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Medicine, ISSN 1651-6206 ; 409
chicken, quantitative genetics, linkage map, QTL mapping, recombination, long-term selection, Z chromosome, selective sweep, SNP
National Category
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-9502 (URN)978-91-554-7377-8 (ISBN)
Public defence
2009-01-09, B42, BMC, Husargatan 3, Uppsala, 13:00
Available from: 2009-01-23 Created: 2009-01-23Bibliographically approved

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