Genetic diversity of eleven European pig breeds

  • Guillaume Laval1Email author,

    Affiliated with

    • Nathalie Iannuccelli1,

      Affiliated with

      • Christian Legault2,

        Affiliated with

        • Denis Milan1,

          Affiliated with

          • Martien AM Groenen3,

            Affiliated with

            • Elisabetta Giuffra4,

              Affiliated with

              • Leif Andersson4,

                Affiliated with

                • Peter H Nissen5,

                  Affiliated with

                  • Claus B Jørgensen5,

                    Affiliated with

                    • Petra Beeckmann6,

                      Affiliated with

                      • Hermann Geldermann6,

                        Affiliated with

                        • Jean-Louis Foulley2,

                          Affiliated with

                          • Claude Chevalet1 and

                            Affiliated with

                            • Louis Ollivier2

                              Affiliated with

                              Genetics Selection Evolution200032:187

                              DOI: 10.1186/1297-9686-32-2-187

                              Received: 8 July 1999

                              Accepted: 14 January 2000

                              Published: 15 March 2000

                              Abstract

                              A set of eleven pig breeds originating from six European countries, and including a small sample of wild pigs, was chosen for this study of genetic diversity. Diversity was evaluated on the basis of 18 microsatellite markers typed over a total of 483 DNA samples collected. Average breed heterozygosity varied from 0.35 to 0.60. Genotypic frequencies generally agreed with Hardy-Weinberg expectations, apart from the German Landrace and Schwäbisch-Hällisches breeds, which showed significantly reduced heterozygosity. Breed differentiation was significant as shown by the high among-breed fixation index (overall F ST = 0.27), and confirmed by the clustering based on the genetic distances between individuals, which grouped essentially all individuals in 11 clusters corresponding to the 11 breeds. The genetic distances between breeds were first used to construct phylogenetic trees. The trees indicated that a genetic drift model might explain the divergence of the two German breeds, but no reliable phylogeny could be inferred among the remaining breeds. The same distances were also used to measure the global diversity of the set of breeds considered, and to evaluate the marginal loss of diversity attached to each breed. In that respect, the French Basque breed appeared to be the most "unique" in the set considered. This study, which remains to be extended to a larger set of European breeds, indicates that using genetic distances between breeds of farm animals in a classical taxonomic approach may not give clear resolution, but points to their usefulness in a prospective evaluation of diversity.

                              genetic diversity molecular marker conservation pig European breed

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                              Authors’ Affiliations

                              (1)
                              Laboratoire de génétique cellulaire, Institut national de la recherche agronomique
                              (2)
                              Station de génétique quantitative et appliquée, Institut national de la recherche agronomique
                              (3)
                              Wageningen Institute of Animal Science, Wageningen Agricultural University
                              (4)
                              Department of Animal Breeding and Genetics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
                              (5)
                              Division of Animal Genetics, the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University
                              (6)
                              Department of Animal Breeding and Biotechnology, Universität Hohenheim

                              Copyright

                              © INRA, EDP Sciences 2000

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