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Genetics Selection Evolution

Open Access

Effect of linkage on the control of inbreeding in selection programmes

  • Blanca Fernández1,
  • Enrique Santiago2,
  • Miguel A. Toro3 and
  • Armando Caballero1Email author
Genetics Selection Evolution200032:249

Received: 29 June 1999

Accepted: 14 February 2000

Published: 15 May 2000


Selection and mating methods for controlling inbreeding in selection programmes are based on relationships obtained from pedigrees. The efficiency of these methods has always been tested by studies using genetic models of independent loci. However, under linkage the rate of inbreeding obtained from pedigrees can be different from the probability of identity by descent of genes. We simulated a quantitative trait under artificial selection controlled by a large number of genes spread on genome regions of different sizes. A method to control inbreeding based on minimising the average coancestry of selected individuals with a restriction in the loss of selection response, and a mating procedure to control inbreeding were applied. These methods, that use coancestry relationships, were not effective in controlling inbreeding when the genome sizes were smaller than five morgans or so. However, for larger genome sizes the methods were sufficiently efficient. For very tight linkage, methods that utilise molecular information from markers should be used. We finally discuss the effects of the selection of individual major genes on the neutral variability of adjacent genome regions.


inbreedingeffective population sizegenetic driftheterozygosityBLUP

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Authors’ Affiliations

Departamento de Bioquímica, Genética e Inmunología, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Vigo, Vigo, Spain
Departamento de Biología Funcional, Facultad de Biología, Universidad de Oviedo, Oviedo, Spain
Departamento de Mejora, Genética y Biotecnología, INIA, Madrid, Spain


© INRA, EDP Sciences 2000