Genetic Diversity in a Small Chicken Population Inferred from Microsatellite Polymorphism

Ryo Tadano; Yukari Kataoka
July 2014
Journal of Poultry Science;Jul2014, Vol. 51 Issue 3, p242
Academic Journal
Neutral genetic variation is believed to provide useful information for conservation of farm-animal genetic resources. The aim of the present study was to assess genetic diversity in a small native chicken population composed of 4 groups, using neutral microsatellite markers. High within-group molecular coancestry coefficients ranging from 0.670 to 0.740 indicated that mating of closely-related individuals occurred within each group. The contribution of each group to genetic diversity was quantified to determine conservation priorities for the groups. The result suggested that 2 of the 4 groups represent greater reservoirs of genetic diversity and carry relatively large number of unique alleles that are missing in the other groups. Thus, these 2 groups were expected to play an important role in future conservation efforts. Genetic clustering analyses based on genotypes of individuals revealed that individuals belonging to 1 of the 4 groups were genetically distant from the others. To avoid inbreeding, future mating plans were designed by estimating molecular coancestry coefficients between candidate males and females. Appropriate mating patterns to maintain genetic diversity were established. Genetic characterization based on neutral molecular variations has the potential to provide valuable information for conservation of rare or endangered chicken breeds.


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