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Transferring QTL technology to the pig breeding industry (PigQTech) - a demonstration project
Andersson, Leif
IRTA. Recerca i Tecnologia Agroalimentàries; Comissió de les Comunitats Europees
The aim of the project has been to demonstrate how the farm animal breeding industry can utilise gene mapping technology to accelerate genetic improvement. Previous theoretical studies had suggested that the use of marker assisted selection could potentially increase the annual improvement for quantitative traits like backfat with about 10% and for more difficult traits such as meat quality and reproduction by as much as 40-60% compared with existing technology. The work has comprised two major tasks: 1. Commercially relevant populations have been screened for segregation at QTLs identified in experimental populations. The aim has been to establish optimal strategies for QTL detection in commercial pig populations and the extent to which QTLs explaining major phenotypic differences between divergent lines used in experimental studies also explain quantitative variation within commercial lines. The results are important for specifying future strategies for finding economically valuable QTLs. 2. Marker assisted backcrossing has been used to demonstrate how a QTL allele can be introgressed from one breed to another. The work has focused on the major fatness QTL on pig chromosome 4 previously identified in a wild pig/Large White intercross. The end result was not designed to be a commercially viable product in its own right, but the process has validated a number of points of major importance for the exploitation of QTLs in livestock.
Porcs -- Genètica
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