Identifying bovine haplotypes associated with healthy beef is our goal. We developed haplospecific markers spanning 14Mb-16Mb on Bota Chromosome 19 known to influence fat metabolism and muscle growth. Haplotypes, assigned by segregation over 3-generation pedigrees, can be identified in different cattle breeds and are therefore species ancestral haplotypes, while other ancestral haplotypes are breed-specific. Previous work on the human major histocompatibility complex (MHC) established the relevant unit of inheritance is not the allele but the ancestral haplotype inherited faithfully from remote ancestors. Comparing haplotype frequencies between Simmental, Angus and Wagyu reveals breed-specific ancestral haplotypes distinguishing most Wagyu from Angus. Ancestral haplotypes are associated with traits characteristic of the breed and can be used for marker-assisted selection of favourable breed-specific characteristics or blend desired traits of different breeds. We offer our conclusions for selective breeding strategies as recommendations based on the new “quantal genomics” paradigm. 

Edward J Steele, Sally S Lloyd, Susan Lester, Joseph F Williamson, Dominic Bayard, Roger L Dawkins

Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume Genetic Improvement Programs: Selection using molecular information (Posters), , 465, 2014
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